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Posts Tagged ‘Friends’

Shlomi Rabi, NBC Chicago Street Team

The age-old adage “Behind Every Great Man Is a Great Woman” is just that—old. The key to success in any relationship, we now know, is support, regardless of whether the person behind us is wearing a pair of pants, a skirt or something by Marc Jacobs. Love is love; its origin should not matter, and the more—the merrier.

This is why Tel-Aviv’s show of love and support for Chicago’s LGBT community in the form of a beach-themed float is an empowering addition. The city that Time magazine has termed “the Mediterranean’s most unlikely capital of cool” becomes the first international city ever to publicly endorse Chicago’s LGBT community at the Gay Pride Parade.

Earlier this year, Tel Aviv was honored with the task of hosting next year’s International Gay Tourism Convention. By doing so, the city reinforces its status as one of the world’s most fun and easygoing gay capitals, alongside London, Rio, Berlin, New York and Amsterdam.

Helping Tel-Aviv spread the love for Chicago’s LGBT community is Club 1948, a local non-for-profit whose mission is to celebrate Israel’s arts and culture. Reflecting the organization’s emphasis on fun and diversity, twenty swimsuit-clad men and women, from different backgrounds and of different ages, will be dancing on the float to the live tunes of American, European and Israeli music.

In a time that gay marriage is a hot topic and opinions on gay rights are polarizing the country, it is nice to see that a foreign friend has got your back. This one never gets old.

To find out what else Shlomi does to live it up, click here.

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Cavorting on the Tel Aviv beach

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Shlomi Rabi, NBC5 Street Team

For the first time in the eleven years that I have been living in this country, I did not go home for New Year’s. This year, I thought, should be different, and if for no other reason then because now that I am the big 3-0, it was time to break tradition and go for something a tad less conventional, a wee bit radical, plus I had no money for a ticket to go back home. So, I decided, being the first of its kind, this New Year’s should be filled with all the grandeur and glamor that befits a devastatingly famous bloggerista (yes, I said bloggerista) such as yours truly.

After fielding offers from anybody who’s anybody such as Nobody and InMyHeadbody, I decided to settle for a medley of four different parties, for most of which I may have mentioned something to the hosts about having nowhere to go for New Year’s and being on suicide watch. The first party was the perfect way to kick off the night, as it was an intimate mix of friends who hadn’t seen each other since 1963 (I kid you not), plus that one genius who expressed his pure shock at the existence of institutions of higher learning in my home country. “Mexico? There are universities in Mexico? Who would ever send their kids there for a semester abroad? I’ve heard of Europe, but Mexico?” Truly the voice of his generation. The next fiesta was at gay couple’s fashionable house, where the average age was two facelifts and the drinks were a cross between strong and fierce. After sipping on a dozen cocktails and about a pound of M&M’s later, it was time to go to soiree number three, a bubbly get-together where the average age required a fake ID and the bedroom doors were boarded shut, we checked. After feasting on the meatballs and then going for the food, we decided to head out to the last treat of the night: a kumbaya congregation by homosexual ladies, where the average age was three cats and two houses. The conversations flowed, the laughs filled the room, and promises to join Amnesty International were made, but then it was time to go home.

While I did not get to see a single firework, or stand with millions of others at a downtown location, or spend my life savings on a cover charge to get into a stuffy club, I had a blast. If there was one thing spending every New Year’s with my family for the past thirty years has taught me, it is that New Year’s Eve is not about the where but about the who. So for this upcoming year, I wish for you, and me, and everyone we know, to be surrounded by the same sort of love and camaraderie that have made us who we are today, and to be able to spend next New Year’s Eve with as much wonderful energy and as many beautiful loved ones. Although something tells me next year’s invitations will probably come with a gag order.

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The Elegant Ron, the Prudish Cinder, the Obese Andy, and the Illiterate Mexican

To learn more about Shlomi’s take on how to have fun in Chicago no matter when and where click here.

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