Episode #38: Coming Out Through Writing, Living Authentically, Dashing Religious Restraints and the F*ck It Mentality with Luanne Smith, Author and Editor

INTRODUCTION:

Luanne loves unpacking tough subject matter that others may find hard to discuss. She’s drawn to gritty realism and believes there are others out there who share her curiosity about taboo topics. Luanne has a witty sense of humor and loves finding ways to connect with other people. 

 

Luanne is originally from Kentucky and spent her career as a creative writing and film professor at West Chester University outside Philadelphia. She has published literary fiction and poetry in journals, and she continues to write her own work as well as editing these three anthologies: Runaway, Taboos and Transgressions: Stories of Wrongdoings and the one we are currently working on, Muddy Backroads: Stories From Off the Beaten Path. Luanne likes gritty writing, and she champions women writers who are often criticized for tackling darker subjects in fiction. Her fiction has appeared in Puerto del Sol, The Texas Review, Oxford Magazine and other literary journals and anthologies. She has published poetry and nonfiction as well. Luanne has hosted well-received AWP Conference panels focused on women writers and the challenges women face writing gritty material and bad-ass female characters. She last presented a panel on the double-standard women writers encounter compared to men when writing sexual content. Luanne still has her Kentucky accent and her blue collar upbringing stays with her in spite of over 30 years as an academic. The lady has a good sense of humor, even if she prefers gritty writing, and she has way more tattoos than what her mother approved of.

 
INCLUDED IN THIS EPISODE (But not limited to):

·      An Argument in Favor of Tattoos

·      The Importance of Living True to Yourself 

·      Insight Into the Writing Process

·      Coming Out Through Writing

·      My Advice to Republicans

·      The True Meaning of Freedom

·      Is God a Stickler for Rules?

·      Jerry Falwell Jr. Fuckery

·      Challenging Religious Bullshit

·      Why We Need to Get Over Pastors and Church Leadership

CONNECT WITH LUANNE:

 

Website: https://luanne-smith.com

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/luanne.smith.562

 

CONNECT WITH DE’VANNON:

 

Website: https://www.SexDrugsAndJesus.com

YouTube: https://bit.ly/3daTqCM

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/SexDrugsAndJesus/

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/sexdrugsandjesuspodcast/

Twitter: https://twitter.com/TabooTopix

LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/in/devannon

Email: DeVannon@SexDrugsAndJesus.com

 

DE’VANNON’S RECOMMENDATIONS:

·      Pray Away Documentary (NETFLIX)

https://www.netflix.com/title/81040370

TRAILER: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tk_CqGVfxEs

 

·      Upwork: https://www.upwork.com

 

·      FreeUp: https://freeup.net

 

·      Disabled American Veterans (DAV): https://www.dav.org

 

·      American Legion: https://www.legion.org

 

 

INTERESTED IN PODCASTING OR BEING A GUEST?:

·      PodMatch is awesome! This application streamlines the process of finding guests for your show and also helps you find shows to be a guest on. The PodMatch Community is a part of this and that is where you can ask questions and get help from an entire network of people so that you save both money and time on your podcasting journey.

https://podmatch.com/signup/devannon

 

TRANSCRIPT:

[00:00:00]

You’re listening to the sex drugs and Jesus podcast, where we discuss whatever the fuck we want to! And yes, we can put sex and drugs and Jesus all in the same bed and still be all right at the end of the day. My name is De’Vannon and I’ll be interviewing guests from every corner of this world as we dig into topics that are too risqué for the morning show, as we strive to help you understand what’s really going on in your life.

There is nothing off the table and we’ve got a lot to talk about. So let’s dive right into this episode.

De’Vannon: Hey everyone. And welcome back to the sex drugs and Jesus podcast. I’m so thankful to have you with me again. One more week today, I’m talking with a lady by the name of Luanne Smith and she is an author and an editor and she’s here to tell us all about her newest book, taboos and transgressions stories of wrongdoings, a title like that. It really speaks for itself. Does it not? 

Now this conversation is gritty. It is real. It is loving. It [00:01:00] is everything you needed to be in so much more. And this episode, we’re going to get into an argument in favor of tattoos. We’re gonna talk about the importance of living true to yourself, and then talk about whether or not God is really a stickler for the rules, like conservatives, try to make him seem. And then the most darling story is shared with us by Luanne about how her former students. Came out through writing and storytelling and it is just the cutest thing I’ve ever heard. And I cannot wait for you to hear it. I just know you’re going to get a lot out of this episode. Well, hello, Luanne darling. Welcome to the sex jugs in Jesus 

pod. 

Luanne: Dan, how are ya? 

De’Vannon: I’m fucking fantastic. How about yourself? 

Luanne: Doing great. Doing great. 

De’Vannon: Yeah, like we were talking before we press that we’re card button then I’m. I’m jealous of you bitch. Cause you were in fucking Florida or Donnie and knife and I’m in goddamn Baton Rouge, Louisiana at a high today [00:02:00] is like 43 fucking whole degrees.

Luanne: I think I like we’re getting up to 75 today, so I’m in the t-shirt and shorts, so, 

De’Vannon: If it weren’t for this pandemic, I might be recording from Miami or at least

Luanne: that would be so nice. Wouldn’t. 

De’Vannon: our Los Angeles. My favorite city is Los Angeles. Baton Rouge is not, is not going to do it for me. I cannot wait to move back to California, but here we are today. We’re going to be talking about some of your writing. Now you’ve gifted the world with three books. One’s called runaway. The other one is taboos and transgressions stories of wrongdoings.

And I think there’s one in the works called I think like muddy Backroads or something like, 

Luanne: yeah. Just finishing it up now. 

De’Vannon: so tell us tell us about your, your history and why you’re drawn to [00:03:00] these taboo books.

Luanne: I’m not sure. I grew up working class in Kentucky and, and I kinda like work that’s down and dirty myself to read you know, and, and has a little grip to. And so when I started a work editing these books.

I wanted the stories. I liked to read the ones that have a little grit to them. And, and the runaway story kind of had a funny or runaway book kind of had a funny beginning because I was telling a story about running away.

When I was a kid, my grandfather told me that I would that five-year-olds will get arrested if they cross the street. And so I was afraid to cross the street when I ran away from home and I would just walk up and down, back and forth across the front of the yard. When I ran away and somebody was laughing about that and said, you should do a book on runaway stories.

 So it, it, it got more gritty than it did from that little. Funny story. You [00:04:00] know and so we I worked with Lee Zacharias and Michael gills, and we put that book together and then I was listening to a podcast or listening to a masterclass online and with Joyce, Carol Oates, and she was talking about writing taboos and I thought, what a great idea you know, and so it just kind of evolved all of them just kind of evolved, but they’re the kind of stories I like to read and, and try to write myself so. 

De’Vannon: okay, so you, I’m sorry. You had to away from home. Tell me what was going on that makes you feel like you couldn’t stay.

Luanne: Oh, I actually, I had a pretty good childhood. It’s not like that. It’s but it’s I was a stubborn little kid and I’m still a stubborn little adult now. You know, and I always wanted my way. And so I, I would run away from home every now and then just to, you know, because I get mad at mom.

 And, and so I’d take off [00:05:00] you know, so that story’s not gritty unfortunately, or fortunately, I guess is the better word to say it, but you know you know, it’s just me being a, a little brat more than anything else. 

De’Vannon: So, so when you would run away, how long would you stay gone? Where would you go?

Luanne: I would go?

to the edge of the yard as close as I could get to the street. I had a dog that would let me get very close to the street cause she’d had a puppy that got run over. So she would stay between me and the street and run away with me. And she’d push against me if I got too close to the street for her taste and, and push me back into the yard.

 And so I just walked back and forth with my little barbecue is filled with the you know, and, and it, it wasn’t running away, running away. It was just me as a kid thinking I was running away more than anything else. 

De’Vannon: [00:06:00] Okay. So then the people who you find for these books that are this, all all true stories or is any of it fiction?

Luanne: Mostly it’s fiction?

mostly it’s fiction, we’re taboos. We’ve got a couple of true stories in there about, for the most part they’re fictional stories. And we just that’s what I write and that’s what I taught for a long time. And so that’s what I leaned towards. You know, but we did have a couple of a true stories coming in for taboos and, and that in particular was a good addition to the piece.

I think we had one or two true stories with runaway and we’re, we definitely got a couple in Murray Backroads that are true stories as well. So. 

De’Vannon: Okay. So for the ones who were the truth stories Did you find that they, did they say that they got out of the stories as either they achieve any [00:07:00] sort of like emotional release from.

Luanne: Oh, absolutely. Yeah, absolutely. They got a emotional release or psychological release from.

being able to write their stories and share it. They also wanted to reach out to people who had had similar stories you know, and, and let them know that you can get through it whatever it happens to be.

And, and you can survive it. You know, even if it’s something of your own making that is a taboo that you broke. But you know, you can, can. Manage it. And so they definitely wanted to exercise their own demons as same time that they wanted to reach out and make other people feel what they had been through to some extent 

De’Vannon: Hmm. So then I’m curious though, the two that we’re going to be talking about later in particular, that stood out to me as one that’s called from, from the taboos and transgressions book at one is called exit stage [00:08:00] by I think it was Chavis woods. And then the other one is the towel of good families by Sonata, Kamala, or either one of those are true story that you remember.

Luanne: the one from Komal is a true story. Yeah. The what does it fall Tao 

of? 

De’Vannon: towel of good families.

Luanne: Good families. Yeah. And yeah, that one is, is a non-fiction all the way through. So that was her story, her experience. 

De’Vannon: Yeah. Read it, read it very real. And I was very, very drawn to that. So I can’t wait to, to dive into that one. So all of all the books that you’ve come across in written of the true stories that you’ve heard, what, what, which one was the darkest one or the one that stood out to you the most. Yes.

Luanne: Well that one is that one’s an empowering story. The one you mentioned before I think that the the darker ones are the ones where they’re dealing with sexual abuse in some way you know, or, or Parental abandonment you know, that type of [00:09:00] thing. And a lot of those stories people write into memoir.

They haven’t necessarily sent into this particular, these particular anthologies. But you know, I think I don’t know if a should awards PR piece on exit stage is true or not, but I know that she grew up in a small. Middle America town as a gay punk kid. And so she had it rough for a while, you know, with, with that sort of being judged situation.

 And so I think that the story exit stage hits close to home. So I don’t know that it is true. I think it hits close to home in terms of what her life was, was like growing up in middle America outwardly gay and outwardly you know, with the shaved hair and you know, trying to deliver a life authentically as she wanted to.

 You know, but she would [00:10:00] go into St. Louis. To, to find people like her you know, herself, and then she would deal with the bullies when she got back home. And so it was a tough, tough existence, I think. And that’s a very common thing, unfortunately. I think you know, and so I think that writing is something that’s very important.

She’s got a couple of books out and I think they’re very important in terms of the statement they make about the, trying to grow up a little bit different. So.

De’Vannon: No worries. Do you find people to submit. There are true stories for these books. Is there a, like some sort of forum or a hub, or it’s just like through word of mouth or.

Luanne: A lot of social media, a lot of word of mouth there’s a, a big conference of writers called AWP that happens every spring course with COVID, it’s been virtual, but that’s where you connect up with a lot of people and get the word [00:11:00] out that you’re looking for stories. And then I also solicited some stories.

 I solicited the piece asked, Chavisa to send me a piece she would. And she sent in exit stage. And I, I have asked Louis Alberto urea is giving us one for Back roads that I’m working on. Now that’s a true story and it’s a funny story, but it’s a true story about trying to find lake Walden and, and ended up with a cow pond and said you know, and so it’s, it’s combination combination of asking writers that I know writers that I’m interested in.

And then also just getting word out through social media as much as possible that we’re looking for manuscripts. And, and what are we S we do a little write-up to tell everybody what we’re looking for. And then they decide whether or.

not to submit based on that. [00:12:00]

De’Vannon: Okay. Now when you, yeah, I heard you used the word gritty a couple of times. So 

Luanne: Yeah. 

De’Vannon: what, what, what is, what is gritty to you? Like what, what do you mean by that? Exactly.

Luanne: Doesn’t pull conscious, you know, it doesn’t back off of the tough subjects. Doesn’t back off of anything, you know, makes a point of going on through and telling the story, whether the story is hard to tell or hard to read or disturbing in some way, we certainly have a couple of stories in taboos that are disturbing stories.

Certainly not feel good stories at all. You know, and, and that’s the kind of stuff I like to read. It’s as a Southern writer, myself, there’s a air. Of Southern writing that’s referred to as Brit lit and grit lit is, is the tougher side of a writing. And that’s where you find Dorothy, Alison and [00:13:00] writers like that, that right.

 Sort of sometimes the poor experience growing up in the cell sometimes you know, the experience of, of just trying to survive in a rural environment without having much to live on. And you know, the, the grit lit is what I gravitate towards because in some ways I had a great childhood, I did grow up blue collar and I did grow up without a lot of things.

And it’s just something that speaks to me a little bit. I think. 

De’Vannon: That’s thinking of when you were growing up. I read about when I was researching you, I read about you where you felt like you had more tattoos than your mother approved of 

Luanne: Yeah, 

De’Vannon: when did you start to start to get tattoos or what age?

Luanne: I was, I was about 30, I think when I got my first one, but that would have been 1989. So I kind of hit it just as a trend was [00:14:00] starting, I think you know, though I was older than most of the people that were getting tattoos at that time. And I got my first one and now I’ve got to. 10 to 12, including a sleeve on one arm.

And just got a new one on the wrist about two months ago. So I tend to keep going you know, with those tattoos now. Yeah, and that was a little bit of a different thing to do if you’re a college professor. But you know, that’s assists who I am and I, I appreciate anybody who lives authentically and is true to themselves.

And I’ve tried to live my life that way as well. Sometimes you, you rub people the wrong way when you do that. You know, but that’s tough. That’s this is me. This is who I am. Kind of thing.

De’Vannon: Yeah. So going with the tattoos, there was some sort of issue that you had in the early [00:15:00] nineties. As I understand that there was some problems with like the students and the staff at a university, like he just said, it’s not really a thing. A college professor does. What sort of controversy happened over your tattoos at work?

Luanne: They had a little bit of an issue with me being tattooed with having specifically having tattoos that show that didn’t feel like it was a very professional thing. And, and it was mentioned to me a few times nobody ever came down on me in terms of I might lose my job or something like that, but it was kind of one of those sideways conversations that I had with people that were over me in terms of you know, who they are.

And then you have most of the time the students were cool with it. They didn’t. You know, but the, the staff that wanted me to look professional and, and you know, that type of thing, I wore jeans and t-shirts and sneakers and had tattoos. I never looked professional a day in my life, as far as I know.

 You know, cause [00:16:00] it’s just me. But I think when you teach creative writing, need to be a little bit more informal because the students are critiquing each other’s work. And, and it’s gotta be a comfortable environment for them. So for me to be there living my life, the way I choose to live it, it brought out there.

Possibilities for living their own lives. I saw that in somebody that was an authority figure and I think it helped a couple of students you know, but I might just be patting myself on the back. I don’t know, but I think it did help with a couple of students who thought, well, she could be in this position and have the tattoos and dress the way she dresses and, and be true to herself.

Then I can be true to myself too and, and make a living and, and be the person I want to be. So, you know, that was the message I was trying to send out. And and I think it did help with a couple of students. Even if my bosses didn’t [00:17:00] approve too much. 

De’Vannon: How do you know they didn’t approve? What, like, what did they, what did they say to you?

Luanne: They would ask me if there was certain kind of meeting to cover up so that my tattoos didn’t show, or they would ask me to they call me the wild child. You?

know, and there are just couple of things that you know, they would say to me, that sort of let me know that they weren’t approving of this.

 You know, they would say, oh, another tattoo Gran, huh. You know, and it was looking down their nose at me for doing that kind of thing. It’s changing. Now, there are a lot of younger professors who come in with all kinds of tattoos. So this was just a sort of a nineties thing where they were reacting and didn’t quite know what to do with a tattooed professor.

 Now. A lot more tattooed professors than what they ever expected. I think so. It’s, it’s acceptable. 

De’Vannon: Yeah. I [00:18:00] mean, it reminds me of how, when I it’s, like, it’s almost like a uniform violation that they kind of were treating you, you know? So you weren’t meeting the code. 

Luanne: Exactly. Yeah. 

De’Vannon: Dress and appearance. Yeah. W every pretty much every job I’ve ever had, I had some sort of snafu in terms of dress and appearance.

And this is like one of the main reasons. I’m glad I don’t work around people anymore because I just don’t have the tolerance for the bullshit though. When I was in the military, I had piercings. So that’s when I started hanging out in tattoo shops and stuff like that. It’s a family, it’s like a family community vibe in those tattoo shops and stuff like that.

 Not to mention that they can get addictive. never got a tattoo. I was more of a piercer. I was into the 

Luanne: Yeah. 

De’Vannon: blood. I almost got kicked out of the military for wearing piercings in uniform and, you know, and stuff like that. I knew it was wrong, but I was like, fuck it [00:19:00] in. And maybe there is a common thread there.

 Commonality amongst people who like to get piercings and who tend to have kind of like a fuck it mentality.

Luanne: Yeah, I hope so. I hope I have a fuck it mentality. 

De’Vannon: And then I also, I’ve always used the word button down shirts. Cause I had these like, you know, like jobs that, you know, was like more like white collar and stuff. And I used to like always, I do like the first three, four buttons, so I could have like a lot of my chest out. Cause I was a vein veiny on their veins.

They’re very vain young man. Hey, it was what it was. I always least that likes to have the testicles out there going a little side boob here and there. When I worked at. I worked at the call center it’s center point energy and Houston, Texas. And the, the floor managers would come around and tell me, make me button my shirt up and shit all the time.

And [00:20:00] I fuck you, bitch.

You know, you’re already tied down to the damn phone. You can’t get up and go piss or like jerk off or nothing without the damn phone. And now you can’t have your titties out if you want to. Oh, this is just repressed worse

within my boss. And I worked for the Texas workforce commission was totally cool about it. You know, I was meeting my numbers. You can give a shit. If I had my tits out, she was like, I think they look great.

And so never forget her. She was a good, good, good fucking boss. One of the few that I’ve ever had in my life 

Luanne: Yeah. 

De’Vannon: anyway that, that that’s my little there. So so what, so, so you, so you’ve written [00:21:00] all these books, you have like blogs and stuff on your website. Is there things you want your readers to learn and gain from the body of work that you have.

Luanne: Well, we’ve been talking about it that authenticity, that be true to yourself, you know, and, and that’s I think the More what I try to say with my own work than anything else. And I think the one of my teachers a long time ago when I was a creative writing student said my characters are all sort of these alienated Indi individuals. You know, and I I think he was right about that because they’re, they’re trying to live a life that a lot of normal society or whatever you want to call, it doesn’t necessarily accept. You know. and I think that that’s going up against the, the grain, there is something that’s common thread in my work and in what I like to read you know, and, and It’s not intentional.

It just, it’s just what comes out. When [00:22:00] I sit down to write, it’s just what I like to read. You know, and, and I don’t do it as a political statement. I do it as, as someone who’s just always been a little bit different and always will be a little bit different. I, you know, and, and just keep going with that.

 Those are the people I gravitate towards are ones that are who they are, you know

De’Vannon: I want to know. So from your, have you ever had anyone who has read any of your books, reach out to you and give you a testimony of how their life changed?

Luanne: I had students do that for sure. You know, and, and they’ve, they’ve either read some of my work or they’ve been in my class where they’ve heard my talk about. Pushing the story to be what it needs to be. You know, I’ve had students come out as gay in my class. I’ve had students tell me afterwards that they’ve changed their mind for what they want to do with their career.

Cause it’s never what they [00:23:00] wanted to do anyway. You know, and so I’ve had this students certainly follow their own lives a little bit more closely after van and class, I’m not trying to paint myself as any kind of a hero or anything like that. You know, it’s just that, that I think if you’re, if you’re doing it right as a teacher, you do more than just teach what’s in the books to learn.

You teach something about life lessons as well. You know, and, and if you reach some students, that’s great. That’s great. This is one of the reasons I’d never be able to teach in high school, but those parents will be after me all the time with what I want to do

De’Vannon: So when you say they came out as gay, so that they like stand up in the middle of class and be like, Hey, I want everyone to know that I’m gay. How exactly did they come out?

Luanne: and their work in the writing. They came out as gay in their writing and, and came up and told me and asked if it was okay. For them to share this work that, you [00:24:00] know, and would tell me this first time they’re telling anybody about this. And I would say, okay, well, we’ll be very gentle not critique too hard and, and make sure that this is a comfortable space for you.

 You know, and, and it was usually a very accepting space for them. And, and so they, they you know, I’ve definitely had, I would say probably over the years, four or five students that came out?

in the class through their writing 

De’Vannon: So how many students were in the class average size. 

Luanne: size.

of the class was about 20 students per class. 

De’Vannon: So they were reading what they had written out loud for everyone else.

Luanne: They pass out copies of what they had written and everybody had copies and to take home and read and read and write their responses the stories. You know and then we’d come back the next week and talk about the stories and make suggestions if we felt like anything needed to be changed. [00:25:00]

De’Vannon: Well, hot damn a literary coming out. 

Luanne: Yeah. 

De’Vannon: Hey, that takes a lot of brave braveness. I think braveness is the word. It takes a lot of braveness and boldness to come out in any kind of way. You know, if you feel like that, that’s something that you want to do. Huh. And then perhaps you could write about it. 

Luanne: Yeah, absolutely. 

De’Vannon: let me think about this.

I guess if there’s someone out there who feels like they need, need to come out and they don’t want to tell whoever, maybe they could write a nice story, you know, write it out just a little bit more. Thorough than like a text in a sitting at tech food B kind of like a personal letter to somebody.

Luanne: yeah. Personal letter or even a fictional story is release of of everything you’ve been holding in. You know, and so I think that [00:26:00] it’s voice, it’s a matter of voice it’s, it’s being able to speak and speak a truth that you experienced. You know, and I think that that’s, that’s part of the reason I like the gray stuff.

It speaks truth. That’s not out there very much. You know, and I think that Part of my own writing. I think I’m just trying to speak a truth about the way I see the world, the way I see people, you know, and I, I certainly think coming out in your writing is, is a way to get your voice out there. 

De’Vannon: Okay. So if someone’s listening to this and they’re saying. Shit. That sound like a good idea, but I’m not a great writer. What advice would you give to people in order to encourage them to hone their writing skills in this, you know, or to this doesn’t have to be like something that’s going to be like all, you know, a great manifesto or anything like that, you know?

Is there any [00:27:00] advice you would give to people who may feel insecure about their ability to write effectively?

Luanne: Yeah. The more you read the, the people you read they’re your teachers more than anybody’s standing up in front of the classroom and they’ll teach you how to put up my dogs barking in the background. Sorry about that. They’re the ones who will teach you how to create the sentence that says it needs to say.

 You know, and so yeah read as much as possible. the genre of writing that speaks to you and read as much as possible within that genre. And, and that’s, that’s where you’re going to learn to write. Even in my composition classes, could usually tell which students were readers and which ones weren’t because of their skill levels.

 And so it was very much a important of, of writing as spear reader as well. 

De’Vannon: Did I would add to that, you know, just [00:28:00] start, you know, even if you don’t think it’s going to come. 

Luanne: Oh, absolutely. 

De’Vannon: As polished or as nice sounding, just fucking began. 

Luanne: Yeah, 

De’Vannon: Cause you never know where it could go. And you’re going to have to go back and redo it. Anyway, when I write, I like to just get something out there and then go back and then rearrange it and everything like that, and then begins kind of to be like putting a puzzle together in a way.

And it gets to be fun and very relaxing.

Luanne: absolutely. Absolutely. I always told my students that it was like throwing the clay on the pot, on the that you don’t have the clay on the wheel to start with, if, And until you have a first draft of something you know, and then you start shaping it, then you start making it into something. So yeah, you’re absolutely right.

Just start, just do it. 

De’Vannon: And the good outline helps even if it’s a simple, basic outline and it starts with the basic skeleton of an outline. And then you come back and add to each bullet point. 

Luanne: Yeah, [00:29:00]

De’Vannon: You know, later on. So, so yeah, so it’s a good to break it down into small chunkable little parts rather than looking at the whole big monster at one time, because that could be overwhelming.

Luanne: absolutely. And don’t take don’t think about people reading it first drafts, or just think about what you want to say and then worry about people reading it and, and that sort of thing. After you get that first draft out there, say what you need to say first. 

De’Vannon: Right? And then you can be like fish. I said, what I said

Luanne: Exactly. Exactly. 

De’Vannon: on my memoir, that’s getting ready to come out. Praise God. I think next month is going 

Luanne: Oh, awesome. 

De’Vannon: it’s going for formatting in a week. And so, but I think I’ve I’m on like the eighth edit of it. So I never would’ve thought, but it takes a lot of editing and a lot of reworking and reworking and relooking.

But 

Luanne: The domes. 

De’Vannon: full memoir. If you’re just trying to write a coming out story, [00:30:00] honey, you only need a good page or two, 

Luanne: Yeah. 

De’Vannon: a whole 300 page or manifesto. Like what my memoir is like, it’s not, you’re not needed. Don’t need to do all that. I think coming out is a beautiful thing for those people who choose to do it.

I never did it because I have a different personality about that. I don’t like to explain myself to people, but people have different value systems and different sort of communities and social backgrounds that they’re coming from. So I get that too. So if somebody is listening and they’re kind of like me and they’re like, my attitude was like this.

If I’m family, can’t look at all of this, that’s going on over here and you can’t figure out that I’m not straight, then I don’t know what the fuck is wrong with you because this is abundantly clear over here. So I’ve never bothered with coming out. I just thought it showing up a guy’s like, yeah, either you accept this or you don’t, if you don’t then fuck 

you 

Luanne: sure. 

De’Vannon: get the fuck.

So, but I know that there’s a very masculine man out there for [00:31:00] instance, who are not feminine at all. And can’t nobody look at them and tell them they’re not. 

Luanne: Yeah. Yeah. 

De’Vannon: So they don’t really have the luxury of being like, well, they should just be able to know that I’m not straight because he’s so like macho masculine, so machismo and everything.

So,

Luanne: Still a personal choice. so you know, I mean, like I said, I think that you live in true to yourself. You’re living to what you want to do you know, and if you want to come out in whatever way, great. If you are not comfortable doing that or you want to keep yourself in waves and that’s your that’s living true to yourself too, you know?

So it’s, it’s a definitely personal choice.

De’Vannon: so as I just don’t want to let got us swerve back to something I asked about earlier, where you had made that statement and whatever it is, I was reading about what your mother, you had had more tattoos and your mother would approve of. Was that just kind of like a general statement you were making or did she actually say something about your tattoos?

Luanne: [00:32:00] She would say with a cringe on her face, it’s pretty, every time I show her a new one you know, she would, she would no, that was not a thing that she approved of at all. And I think my dad was, had already passed away when I got my first one, because he would have been absolutely upset about it.

 No, it’s, it’s you know, she was okay. I got one on my ankle, first one and, and, you know, one or two here or there, she was like, well, they don’t show that much. So if that’s okay. But now that I have ones that are. Very blatantly out there. I think she would she would not approve that at all. You know, it’s just, why do you want to mark yourself up like that of thing? 

De’Vannon: Yeah. You know, when I was growing up in cherish, they would tell us not to get in the Pentecostal church without our recommend to no one. You know, they would tell us, you know, everything’s wrong, everything’s the devil, you know, piercings tattoos and stuff like that. And then they would use scripture [00:33:00] about, well, you know, the Lord says your body as a temple.

So therefore you should respect that and getting tattoos and piercings the way of disrespecting your body. Okay. So what one would consider to be disrespectful or not is subjective. And so people say like your mom, like the people at church and everything, look at people with tattoos and want to judge them and everything like that.

I think it’s bullshit. And I think that it’s reflective of people being made uncomfortable by things that that’s just not like them.

Luanne: Absolutely. Yeah, I agree totally that they, you know, they disapproved for whatever their personal reasons are and, and a lot of it has to do with, well, you’re not acting the way I act. We’re not seeing the world the way I see it. You know, and so therefore you’re wrong and you’re bad and all these other things.

And unfortunately, I think that that’s very [00:34:00] much how our society is right now. You know, and, and that’s why I think, you know, finding people who are true to themselves is a rarity in some ways. You know, and, and I appreciate that. So, 

De’Vannon: It’s all I want to offer this. Nugget of Liberty to people out there, which I don’t know how many conservative people would be listening to, my show anyway, but just in case somebody might be considering abandoning their conservative ways. You can look at something or someone, you know, you don’t really have to have an opinion about it one way or the other, 

Luanne: Yeah. 

De’Vannon: know, you don’t have to like it or dislike it.

You don’t have to approve it or disapprove it. It could just exist and just leave with a fucking bad, like you don’t have to, you don’t 

have to, do anything. You don’t have to say anything. You don’t have to react. So I would say to Republicans that I liked that are shade at Republicans as they’re the epitome of hate, [00:35:00] hate hypocrisy, judge judgment, being judgmental and all of that.

So if a woman wants to get an abortion, Not your fucking business bitch. If 

Luanne: exactly. 

De’Vannon: a men want to get married, not your fucking business, how if somebody wants to get pat to shut the fuck up about it and go, it doesn’t matter.

Luanne: Mind your business live your life. You know, I agree that couldn’t I, you said It perfectly.

De’Vannon: It is so, but I think a lot of people who judge people don’t understand how wrapped up in bondage they are by projecting their, that sort of judgment onto people, but that you can’t give away what you don’t have. So in order for you to try to corral and control people force them to live, like you want them to live means that you are in bondage yourself.

Luanne: Absolutely. 

De’Vannon: And so you’re not really free, [00:36:00] confident, 

Luanne: Hmm. 

De’Vannon: free people are like, say our straight allies like, well, I don’t care if they’re gay or not. It doesn’t affect me. I’m, you know, I got other shit to do, know, that person is free 

Luanne: Yeah. 

Yeah. 

De’Vannon: a chord in them. And they see people living their life over there across the street somewhere, they don’t feel enraged.

Like they’ve got to go and do something about it because they are at one within themselves. Republicans are not at one within themselves, know, conservative people who want to comment on people’s tattoos who thinks someone’s skirts too short, who thinks And you don’t understand the concept of sex positivity, you know, you know, in different things like that because you know what they have held within themselves.

They are not whole, therefore they cannot allow the people to just fucking be happy. 

Luanne: Right, 

De’Vannon: They are happy. That’s where it starts. The people are miserable and Republicans are just fucking miserable life. They’re just unhappy the lot of them[00:37:00]

though,

Luanne: They live by a lot of rules. Yeah. You know, and. 

De’Vannon: go ahead.

Luanne: I was going to say, that’s, that’s a, you know, one of the things I learned putting that taboos and theology together was the, the, the number of rules we have out there about how you’re supposed to live your life. You know, and, and just how ridiculous it is, as long as you’re not hurting anybody else, you know, 

De’Vannon: Right. 

Luanne: you know? Yeah. 

De’Vannon: But, you know, what the Lord, as much as it’s, you know, he’s not really as for rules, as people try to make him seem. 

Luanne: Yeah. 

De’Vannon: these, those, when he was here and let me see, you know, was an instance that happened in the old Testament when David was becoming king and he was on the run, you know, he made his way to the temple and he ate of the holy food.[00:38:00]

He wasn’t a priest him or the priest that was against the rules. But he, it was allowed to happen anyway, in then when Jesus was here on the earth, you know, he referenced back to that story because the, the Pharisees, the Sadducees, the religious people of the day, the conservative Christian leaders of his day were trying to tell him what you’re doing is against the rule, sir.

And he was like, what’d, you know, God didn’t make people for rules, rules were made for people. 

Luanne: Yeah. 

De’Vannon: you adjust those rules and you do whatever it takes to keep people in community. You know, you don’t be a stickler for the rules to the, to the, to, and then you exile people and discard people, but the rules stay intact, 

Luanne: Yeah. 

De’Vannon: you know, that’s, that’s not of God.

And so when we get these fundamentalists people like a certain Supreme court justice, Amy called me Baird, you fucking con. And you know, and you know, different people like that, who. Forced, [00:39:00] you know, the world to stay in original rules, no matter what, we’re not even a modicum of flexibility. You know, that that is not the way God works and that that’s not the way he wants us to work with people.

He wants us to take a second, look at things to readjust our views as time goes on not be rigid in unmovable.

Luanne: Right, right. No. And you know, you absolutely got it right on, you know, I think that I mean I grew up in the south and I grew up in the Bible belt. You know, and so, and my dog is throwing a fit. I’m so sorry, you know, but That’s all right, baby.

 But you know, it’s, it’s a. Yeah. know, you interpret the Bible the way you want to interpret a lot of people, I think. And know, and so it’s, I want to these are the rules we live by, because that’s how price said [00:40:00] to do it. Maybe look again at the Bible and what it actually said. Because it’s, it’s a little bit you know, interpreted wrong a lot of the time, I think.

De’Vannon: I’m gonna just say this, and then we’re going to move onto the towel of good families Huh. 

when it comes to and I don’t mind the dog, you know what? People like a good organic compensation in this thing. And especially since the coronavirus came to town, everything’s done over zoom from home. So people got all kinds of dogs, cats, kids, fucking jeopardy playing in the background, all kinds of things going on.

It is what it is. So I was going to say, yeah, you know, You know, the crazy world we live in, you know, people who tout the name of God are also flinging AK AK for assault rifles and shit from the pulpit, you know, you’re conservative Christian people. And then we have our Jerry Falwell’s, Jerry Falwell juniors to be more specific.

Actually, I don’t know that much about his dad, but you know, I’m just going to put this out there. And Mr. Falwell [00:41:00] Jr. Decided to come out in his own, right. In an article disavowing, everything that he’s basically done in terms of religion, he was like, I’m not spiritual. There was pressure on me to be spiritual.

So yeah, that’s why it’s because the pool boy scandal caught up and then the picture with him, with his pants open with some woman who’s not as wife and all of that. And so he finally. He was like, yeah, it was all a ruse. Anyway, it was bullshit. Fuck all this church shit. So y’all so y’all can go and look that up and then take a look and question yourself thoroughly as the, why you pay attention to conservative Christian people who call themselves Christians in the news the day, because they’re full of shit.

And so,

Luanne: Yeah. 

De’Vannon: but keeping in line with religion, the towel, the towel that families by Sanai Kemal was, oh, I think that’s a beautiful name. S O N I a H K M a L this story at the Stan and that happening in this story opens with her mother holding her [00:42:00] wooden prayer beads and shit like that, which was a beautiful, beautiful imagery in the sense that it’s true.

Luanne: Yeah. 

De’Vannon: So right there, you got like a, probably an overly religious woman, you know, already from the get-go. And this woman is telling her daughter not to talk the boys, you know, yada yada yada whoopee. Woo. Because in a lot of overseas religions, you know, men are put on a fucking pedestal and women are like underneath the dirt somewhere, you know, even lower than that.

And honestly, in a lot of ways, that’s how Christianity used to be. You know, I don’t know. I don’t, I wouldn’t say it was to that extent, but say like in the Bible say women weren’t counted. So when you see like tallies of numbers, of people that don’t include females, they only counted the men. You know? So there’s that, although the Bible is a middle Eastern texts, it’s not American.

So some people try to act like we wrote the book. We did not it’s from the middle east. [00:43:00] So you have that influence going on. And so in this story here, this mother is telling her daughter all about what she can’t do, because basically she is a female and she has these expectations that are being levied upon her and everything like that.

But what I love about this story is this girl is clapping back at her parents, her mother and she’s challenging them. So I’m going to read an excerpt from this. 

Luanne: Sure ‘

De’Vannon: cause she says, where in the Quran does it say girls can’t smoke and voice can where in the Koran does it say boys can go topless, but girls can wear in the Koran.

Does it say that my brother can have a telephone installed in his room, but I can’t even get one, even though I’m nine years older than him.

And she says she has yet to receive a proper answer or she gets their belief. Baleful gazes and admonitions to stop asking stupid questions.

 [00:44:00] They, what you want to say about that? Because I got a lot to say.

Luanne: Yeah. I would say that to S to some extent, that’s the heart of the story, you know, and, and the girl or, you know, she keeps it’s not a fictional piece. It’s a memoir and she keeps, keeps pushing and rebelling to the point where, I mean, she’s almost, she’s talking to boys almost immediately in the memoir, and then she has a boyfriend and, you know, she hears this rumor about the boyfriend’s mother and, and.

And, you know, if she were a good girl, she wouldn’t have been in this situation at all, but she’s you know, saying, why does it say.

I have to act a certain way? Where, where does it say that I have to act like this? Like you said, and so I’m, I’m why I’m dying to hear what you have [00:45:00] to say. So have at it, baby. 

De’Vannon: Well, it reminds me of when I was growing up in church and they would tell us you’re not supposed to drink in Dan’s masturbate. I would be like we’re in the Bible. Does it say that I can’t drink for answers? I can see it arguing against access. That, I mean, excess, that makes sense because being drunk is not really all that fun.

So I was just told to basically just be quiet and do what they say. And so there’s a rise in people, and this is why people break away from religion is because when we see an accuracies things that don’t add up and we question it, we’re told to shut the fuck up when I was in seminary. Before I left the fucking teeth professor to straight up admitted.

He was like, yeah, we intend to control the congregation. And I, and I was like, what? And they were like, yeah, that’s what we do here that we want to control the congregation. I think he was coming from a Baptist background and I [00:46:00] was like, okay, this is why movies. Like the golden compass never got a second sequel because movies like that are all about like religious control.

Luanne: Yeah. Yeah 

De’Vannon: It’s like it, this is why like in my ministry my main encouragement to people is to break away from the need of like say pastors and preachers to interpret scripture and stuff like that. if you’re going to follow the Koran, if you’re going to follow the Hebrew Bible and people are coming up with laws and shit that they can’t justify with scripture, the fuck are you doing.

Luanne: yeah, yeah, exactly. 

De’Vannon: You know, now, at least though Kieron, the people who read it, read it in its original language Louann. the Bible that this Hebrew Bible here that, that, that Americans use and people use is not even written in its original language, 

Luanne: No. 

De’Vannon: three languages. The old Testament is Hebrew and Aramaic. And the new Testament is Greek.[00:47:00]

And I don’t know very many people who actually have read it and it’s a native tongue. And so at best ed, best, most people who have these staunch beliefs and shit like that are getting them derived from somebody else’s interpretation of someone else’s book.

Luanne: That’s right. I mean, it’s, that’s exactly how it is. It’s, it’s an interpretation. You know, and, and how do I tell this story in another language, but you know, you got somebody else’s opinions coming in when they translate and, and so it’s, it’s you don’t know, you have no idea how much of their own opinion they put in there when they translated.

And so, know, the original language is. How you should read it if possible.

De’Vannon: You know, in this day and time you can just [00:48:00] Google single passages. Like, what does this bot, what does this part say in original than the original language? Or what’s some commentary on this? You got to dig deeper. You never want a preacher because preachers cannot separate their upbringing and their personal.

 Belief systems from their message. They don’t, it’s all infused into it, but it’s sold to you as a divine message from God. And it does not, it has a lot of what that preacher thinks, because if you listen to what preachers say, they’ll often say things like, especially when they’re challenged on something that they’ve said, they’ll say, well, I wasn’t raised that way.

I wasn’t brought up that way. When, whenever Joel Olsteen from, you know, from Lakewood church in Houston, Texas was first asked about his stance on homosexuality and maybe on the interview that him and Victoria, his wife did on Larry King. You know, I believe it was one of, one of his responses. Like he wasn’t brought up that way, but see, the thing is, and I can talk about, you know, that church, cause that’s the church that I was ministering at before I got kicked out for not being straight.

So I’ll talk all the shit about them that I want. 

Luanne: [00:49:00] Yeah. 

De’Vannon: You know, but the point is like, okay, were you supposed to be your preacher? We don’t give a damn about who you were brought up. You know, your, your job is to get your fucking ass up there and tell us what thus sayeth the Lord, not 

what, not what thus say it, your upbringing, 

Luanne: Yeah. 

De’Vannon: you know, and by that logic, then everyone should just do what the fuck they were raised as, but he’s not the first preacher I’ve heard say that.

They said that all in Pentecostal church throughout my whole life, because they would say it in response to like their criticism, someone else there’ll be like, well, those Catholics over there are those Baptist people over there are those gay people over there are those drug addicts over there. You know, they’re living in sin.

You know, I wasn’t bought up that way. I just don’t understand what they’re doing. Well, bitch, you don’t have to. And I’ve already discussed earlier wise, not necess a necessity for us to understand everybody else, but you know, this girl in this book is breaking away from the control that this religion is trying to have.

Luanne: Right. 

De’Vannon: But so many [00:50:00] people, so many people don’t and then what happens is we ended up living fake. We ended up curling, you know, regressing into ourselves. Okay. This translates into suicide depression, anxiety, a lot of the problems we have in this world today that are being treated with medicine really result from a lack of true self-love and self-acceptance and a lot of it starts with religion.

Luanne: Yeah. I think you’re very, very right about that. And, and a lot of it starts with being brought up a certain way. You know, and, and that not, not being who you are and, and kind of feeling the bondage you know, and not knowing how to break out of it. 

De’Vannon: Well, that’s why I do my podcasts. That’s why I’ve written my, my memoir, which is, as you would say, grit is full of a lot of grit and everything like that. And 

it. And in order to try to help people break free of this, because I see it so much, [00:51:00] I’m a licensed massage therapist. People would come to me for massages, but they would tell me all their personal problems.

And it’s the same thing. People are so unhappy, 

Luanne: Yeah, 

De’Vannon: know? And your book serves the same purpose. You’re basically laying out a whole bunch of situations where people were not happy. 

Luanne: right, right. Yeah. That’s it. 

Yeah. 

De’Vannon: it though? How did it change? 

Luanne: Yeah. 

De’Vannon: So going to happy. We can’t stay that way.

got to give, to read a little bit more from from Sinatra’s story here because I absolutely love the way that this read. She can, he continues furthermore uh, do do not have a natural aversion to siren songs. There are such as Madonna, Cindy lopper and Samantha Fox. This worries my mother to know in, and she often remarks what’d you get family will accept the Madonna type as their daughter-in-law.

My mother is [00:52:00] far from impressed. When I say that I might not accept such a prudish family. I tend to look up to the likes of Madonna. The fact that upsets my mother, most of all, since everyone, and anyone can see my supposedly loose morals in my neon leggings, my tie dye t-shirts under which I wear a black bra, my six and my six earrings in each ear, which I pierced myself, my bright red HANA, dyed hair.

In fact, one of the reasons my mother gave permission to, to me to attend is, I don’t know what L is to attend. Elle is because they have the, maybe there’s a school there to attend. Elle is because they have a uniform of sorts, the only colors permitted or unembellished khaki, whites, and reds, and also no Western wear for girls.

So. She’s referring to like 1980s, 1990s, Madonna there with the tie dye with 

Luanne: Oh, yeah, 

De’Vannon: everything.[00:53:00]

Oh, she gave so much a lie. I was like, come on Madonna, look like a Madonna has been getting a lot of shade from the gay community lately for this and that. But you know, Madonna could give two bucks less about it.

Luanne: that’s true. That’s what makes her who she is. 

De’Vannon: She’s like, I don’t give a fuck. I’m Madonna bitch. Arthur song said, bitch, I’m Madonna.

I know my God, this girl is just giving me so much a life. So she’s bringing Madonna, Cindy lopper, a gay icon. Fag hag ruin is I don’t think fag has, is a derogatory term. Some people in some parts of the world think fag has, is meant insultingly. I do not. If it, if you think fag hag is, is a bad word I’ll say, I’m sorry for that, but, but it just, it’s not meant in a negative way.

And so but yeah, it was Madonna and Cindy law [00:54:00] or some of the world’s greatest fag hags. She’s trying to do this in the middle of a Quran or on society. 

Luanne: Yeah. 

De’Vannon: I don’t know if she ever moved away from there. Do you know that she’s still living?

Luanne: in America now. I don’t remember where exactly, but she’s, she’s teachers riding in America now. So she’s and, and very successful writer. Yeah. This is another thing I found interesting about this book. I could tell it’s a different writing styles across each of the stories and there’s a good, like 20 stories I think in this. 

yeah, 

De’Vannon: It’s different writing style. So it will appeal to very many different readers and different backgrounds of different lifestyles.

 So I’m glad that she left. I’m very, very glad that she left. And so I would, I would, I would preach that message to people, to people who are black, the black sheets out there, like I’m a total black sheep and I love it. It’s like probably my favorite thing about myself. I love [00:55:00] being weird. I love being different.

I don’t want to do normal because it’s boring and overrated and it’s not even attractive, but instead of trying to an institution or a group of people to like you and my God sake for, you’re not going to ever try to change herself so they can accept you because they never will because they don’t like themselves.

That’s why they’re trying to change you. Leave if you can, and it may take some planning, some preparation and prayer and all of that and 

Luanne: Yeah. 

De’Vannon: don’t stay is like, let me say this, that I’m a hush. And then, so you can talk, but it’s like gay people, non straight people are straight allies. If you’re setting up in a church that is anti LGBTQ two S LGBTQ plus, they don’t like the people.

They don’t think women should get abortions. They got this shit you don’t like. And I, and I’ve done this. I’ve sat there too. Cause I felt like I needed to be a church because why? Because people told me I should go, go somewhere else, go to a gay affirming church, go to places that [00:56:00] are better, that you have people who are going to support you and celebrate you rather than to attack your lifestyle and stuff like that.

You know? And then, you know, because you’re hurting yourself. If you’re not straight, why sat there and listened to a preacher, say that you’re going to go to hell. Now we rationalize it and we go, okay, well I’ll disagree with them on that, but I agree with everything else and we make concessions for it. Y you know, we shouldn’t stay in abusive relationships.

We shouldn’t say it abusive churches, abusive companies, organizations. If, if, if, if the whole thing is in positive, when nothing’s fully positive, let me not say that there’s something that’s a personal attack against you, or what you believe in and you should go. But what do you think? Cause that’s what I’m seeing.

You know, she left overseas and came to the place where she could thrive rather than trying to say. Yeah.

Luanne: Oh, I, I completely agree with that. In a similar [00:57:00] vein, I guess when I was a kid, it was in the sixties and we were living in a small town in Kentucky and our church Southern Methodist church was a very small community, very small congregation but a black couple wanted to join. The church first black couple to ask to join the church and the elders did not want since the sixties, the elders did not want black couple in the church.

And my parents who I would never say were activists in any way. My parents left the church at that time. And God bless them for that. You know, because they saw something where they said, this is not the right church for us, that doesn’t accept people no matter what. And they left the church and it had been a big part of our lives that church had had been.

And, you know, for them to walk away at that point I noticed, even though I was only like six years [00:58:00] old, I noticed, and I understood why and I think it it’s had a big impact on who I became as time went on, you know, and, and know, exactly if it’s, I liked what you said, if it’s an abusive church or an abusive situation and abuse comes in many forms then walk away from it.

And, and I think if, you know, that’s, that’s right on, if you can do it, if you can get away, get away. And, and my parents taught me that that’s great, you know, 

De’Vannon: Right. My my boyfriend’s mom did that for him and his brother. When when they were younger, I don’t think they even had a chance to come out and say anything, but mothers know when they have gay children, they just do so when, when she had them in a church at first, it may be in, but when they started preaching against the [00:59:00] gayness, she was like, oh, hell no, I’m taking my children away from this.

And they just never went back to any church at all, because, you know, why keep your kids in a situation like that, where they’re going to get hurt. If something I wish, you know, my, my, you know, my mom did the best job. She knew how to do with her own set of circumstances. And I’m not mad at her and I don’t hold anything against her.

But knowing what I know now as an adult, you know, I don’t, I wish that she would not have kept the meet in a church where they were preaching against homosexuality. 

Luanne: right. 

De’Vannon: No, or against really anything, you know, I don’t want to go to church to hear how much you hate some person or some group of people. That’s not what it’s about.

And and you know, I wish that my mom would have divorced my dad because he, as I understand that he had an affair when, when she was pregnant with me and he had definitely had one when I was in, when I was in grade school, you know, and of course he would be very [01:00:00] physically and verbally abusive to myself and my siblings and then verbally abusive to my mother as well.

You know, this is a mean fucking man. And, you know, I looked at his affairs as a way out, you know, because according to Jesus, once you’re married, if you get divorced for any reason, other than infidelity, that he considers you an adulterer, doesn’t no matter what. 

Luanne: right, right. Yeah. 

De’Vannon: I get the straight conservative church world get divorced all the time.

And that seems to be cool with them. And then, but then they didn’t want to turn on the tap gay people. Then there’s a whole other story there. But I feel like God was giving her a way out. I wish she had taken us out of that abusive home, 

Luanne: Yeah. Yeah, 

De’Vannon: trying to make it work. You know, the, the other option is to find a better atmosphere.

You know, you got to 

Luanne: yeah, 

De’Vannon: the go, when to stay, when to go. And so oh my God. So. Hmm. So I’ll just [01:01:00]recap that we’ll always want to be sure that we challenged challenge anything. Anyone else’s telling us, let’s fact check it we don’t want to put ourselves in a place where we’re going to living a lie, whatever we want to live, be sure it’s our own truth.

Not someone else’s 

Luanne: yeah. 

De’Vannon: let’s put ourselves in places where we have freedom of expression so that we will 

Luanne: Yeah. Yeah, 

De’Vannon: that way. We have good mental health. We have joy to share with the world we’re being the truth. We’re living our truth. And we are, you know, we’re not, we’re not living a lie because that shit will show up later with bad health.

It can manifest in your body, you know, in, in, in, in different ways like that, know, it’s, it’s, it’s a very dangerous thing to live a lie.

Luanne: yeah, yeah. I agree with you a hundred percent. And I think I think my parents did inadvertently teach me that though. They didn’t realize that’s the lesson I was getting from that. And I think but I think from, you know, from then on, I was like, [01:02:00] well stay away from the lies, you know, be who you are, be, who you are And try to live authentically.

De’Vannon: And so then the last thing we’ll talk quickly about was exit exit stage a lot of this reads really and it reads really real to me. You said you weren’t sure if it, if it’s, if it’s fiction or nonfiction, it sounds very nonfictiony to me because I’ve lived through this life before and we’re talking about snorting cocaine and this little snippet that I took, I thought it was kind of cool because of its accuracy.

And so I would just read through it real quick. And so. It, it opens up with someone talking. It says never snort cocaine out of any bill smaller than a 20. The old man told her that’s a lame, that’s some loser shit right there. He took a drag of a cigarette and reached into his back pocket, retrieving a crisp $50 bill.

And he held it between his fingers and snap it in her face so that it popped take girl, [01:03:00] use this. That’s what you want to do your first line out of, oh, she reached out and took the bill, go easy on her. She don’t know no better. Her mother told him, patting her daughter on the back. And so this is a cool story here of a mom.

You know, you know, watching her daughter do a couple of lines of cocaine and then whoever, whoever this guy is being like, don’t be a weak ass bitch. You know, you won’t be lame. You don’t do that shit out of like something greater than a 20, which is real as fuck, you know, 

Luanne: Oh, yeah. 

De’Vannon: You always want to roll up like a hundred dollar bill or something, you know, you want to just be like Tony Montana with his shit, you know, that’s our face with it

and we’re going to do it at all. But, you know, she said she had a rough upbringing, you know, I, I read that with glee, but you know, it’s not necessarily the best situation for, you know, a mother to be encouraging her daughter to do cocaine.

I’m not [01:04:00] judging her for it, but,

you know,

Luanne: Well, it’s, it’s the same thing though. I mean, she’s doing it because her mother wants her to, you know, and she wants to be a part of her mother’s life. Does she really want to do it? Is that really who she is? We don’t know, you know, and, and I think it’s, it’s a lot, I think that has ending of that story says a lot where she, she is obviously trying to please her mother and be close to her mother through her actions.

 You know, and so there’s, there’s a little bit of a problem there with that. You know, rather than being true to herself, she’s being she thinks her mother wants her to be. You know, That’s kind of, it, it’s kind of the opposite of the other story that you liked in terms of what the daughter’s doing. But it’s the same, you know, same idea in some ways. Do I please mom, or do I please [01:05:00] myself? And then this one she tries to please, mom just sit mom is into cocaine rather than the Korean. 

De’Vannon: Well, religion’s just as much of a drug.

Luanne: Oh yeah, I think so too. Yeah. 

De’Vannon: You know, people try to throw so much shade at like drug addicts and stuff like that. And look, I’ve been that added with a needle, hanging out my arm and blood squirting everywhere. And I’m not even a fucking ashamed to say that, but you know, religion is a DELWP is fucking, I mean that negative leave, like a drug people get upset.

And it dipped it to the process until the ritual, just like it’s like a dope theme gets addicted to the process and the ritual of acquiring drugs, setting it all up, injecting it, people get high when they go to church every time, you know, and then they want to force that shit on other people. 

Luanne: Yeah. 

De’Vannon: no different now.

It’s cute. It’s a cute addiction because you know, you’re not covered in tattoos and a grimy place with [01:06:00] your arm and a belt wrapped around your bicycle to get the veins popped up and you don’t have track marks all up and down your fucking body. Could you try to shoot up in all kinds of different places that you’ve blown out, all the veins in your arm, you know, you get to put on a pretty dress and go set up and cherish and judge other people.

But bitch, you’re strong out to.

Luanne: Yeah. Yeah, no, I totally agree. It’s, it’s a, it’s an escape. It’s a way of looking for something outside of yourself. You know, and, and that’s exactly what drugs do too, is sorta help you escape yourself. But certainly religious religion does too sometimes with people and, and I don’t know.

It’s you put it the best way. It’s a bondage. It’s a, it’s a form of being Tied up 

De’Vannon: Tied up and you don’t know you’re tied up. And so 

this is why the Bible tells us not to judge other people and [01:07:00] to be aware of hypocrisy because you can fall into those two traps and not even realize it. So I’m gonna say this again, leave other people the fuck alone. If you’re with your mouth off of other people and let people live their lives because you don’t know what’s going to happen when you stand before God for yourself.

Luanne: right. Exactly. 

De’Vannon: And so with that, I’m going to let you wrap us up with the last word. You can say whatever you want to say. And I felt like you written a good book here that people of many different walks of life and lifestyles will be able to read through and find themselves written in it for parents out there for people in relationships out there.

If you can’t quite find the words to bring up certain topics that you’ve been meaning to talk about this book can help you. You can get this book, bringing it up that way, you know, Hey, let’s read this page right here, 

Luanne: Yeah. 

De’Vannon: something like that. [01:08:00] So look, it’s a conversation piece and it can help you in your personalized.

Luanne: Yeah, I would say you know, it’s, it’s not just a matter of being true to yourself. It’s also a need to express yourself and express your truth in some way. And I think there are a lot of different ways to do that, that don’t hurt other people. You know, like writing, like reading you know, you learn to express yourself and express your truth or things like that.

 You know, and, and I think it’s very important it’s one of the reasons that taboos is exists. That’s a anthology because I wanted to put a book out there that says it’s okay for you to, to feel these things. It’s okay for you to read these stories. And, and it’s okay for you to on the taboos and, and you know, figure out what, what works for you in this world.

 And I think that that’s something that comes across in the [01:09:00] book. Excited that we managed to get stories that say that kind of thing. We had over 200 submissions for that, that anthology. And we were very careful about what we selected to actually get down to that 20 you know, and, and have variety there.

So it would reach different people you know, and certainly say something to them. 

De’Vannon: I’m happy about that. Because it helps people who step into somebody else’s shoes, because so much of judgment say like people who judge gay people, they want to kick us out of churches and stuff like that, but they’ve never been to a gay party. They’ve never been information tables they’ve ever been to a P flag meeting.

Then that stands for parents of friends, lesbians and gays, I think. But it is a constructive, positive nonprofit organization, you [01:10:00] know, you know, we’re not just, you know, there’s that aspect of us that’s twirling around with barely any clothes on and all of that, that’s true. But you know, straight people do their own shit too.

But the point is like, like they judge a lifestyles, but they have never come to come to the table, you know, never hung out with us. They never been to a tattoo shop to see really what it’s all about. You know, they’ve 

Luanne: Yeah. 

De’Vannon: you know, they’ve got these preconceived notions, but you know, books like this help to help people to understand other lifestyles with sides and their own.

Luanne: Yeah, 

De’Vannon: And so so maybe conservative judgmental ass bitches will pick this up. And by the time they put it down, they won’t be such a bitch anymore.

Luanne: yeah. Thank you. I hope that’s what happens. 

De’Vannon: Level, that’ll take some big shit, do something, but just judging people. Fuck it’s it’s not cute, Karen. It is not cute topic, Karen we’re over [01:11:00] you.

All right. So your website is luanna-smith.com. Facebook is also the land Smith. I’m going to put this in the show notes. 

Luanne: Okay. 

De’Vannon: The name of the book is taboos and train transgressions stories of wrongdoing that will go in the show notes along with the other two books as well. And it’s been a joy having you today?

 I felt like the library was opened the day. I think mama RuPaul would be proud of the work we have done. And I look forward to this show releasing. Thank you so much. 

Luanne: Thank you so much. I really appreciate it.

De’Vannon: Thank you all so much for taking time to listen to the sex drugs and Jesus podcast. It really means everything to me. Look, if you love the [01:12:00] show, you can find more information and resources at sex, drugs, and jesus.com or wherever you listen to your podcast. Feel free to reach out to me directly at DeVannon@SexDrugsAndJesus.com and on Twitter and Facebook as well.

My name is De’Vannon and it’s been wonderful being your host today and just remember that everything is going to be all right.

 

 

Leave a Comment