More Nonflamable Posting: The N.Z.

More Nonflamable Posting: The N.Z. Bear Name FAQ

To my surprise, I received far fewer questions about my nom de plume than I had expected when I started TTLB. However, they are starting to pile up. And so, while I’ve answered some queries privately, it is time, I think, to publicly address some of the common questions. So here goes.

Is N.Z. Bear your real name?

No. It is indeed an alias.

Why the alias, coward? Are you chicken ?

Well, yes and no. I don’t particularly care if I potentially endanger myself by pissing off wackos. (And if I am not pissing off any wackos, I’m not accomplishing my goals for the site). However, I do have family, and they have the same name as I do. And so I’m uncomfortable with the possibility that, remote as it may be, some wacko might decide to show up on my doorstep and harass anyone I hold dear. And so, an alias.

Will you ever consider dropping the alias?

Yes, almost certainly. I think about it pretty frequently. (When I got the Salon piece published was certainly a big moment of decision… there was a heavy temptation to have it be my “true name” up in lights there). My conclusion, however, is that I can always “come out” later… but once “out”, there ain’t no going back. And so, for now, I remain a coward.

Does the N.Z. stand for New Zealand?

Probably the most common question. No, it does not. I’ve don’t live there, and in fact have never been there, although I hear it is lovely. (I live in California, which those of you who have been paying close attention already knew).

So what does it stand for?

It’s a private joke. And no, I’m not telling.

About the “Bear” part. Are you a large, hairy gay man?

Er, no. But thanks for asking. (I actually did receive this question — asked very politely, I might add — from a reader). Although I have now learned (also from said reader) that “bear” is a term some homosexual men of generally large build use to describe themselves, that would not be me.

If you have a N.Z. Bear name question that wasn’t answered here, by all means, send it my way! I’ll try to answer it — or at least evade it in an entertaining fashion.