11 years ‘married’ today

11 years ‘married’ today

Tonight Jason and I will have a quiet dinner to celebrate the 11th anniversary of our so-called “illegal gay wedding”. It’s amazing how quickly the 11 years has passed since we very publicly tied the knot. We chose to make it public to raise awareness of the fact that we couldn’t legally marry, but in spite of that the ceremony was as real and important to us as any of our ‘straight’ friend’s weddings. So you might be surprised that we are not throwing a big party to celebrate the anniversary? Well, we don’t feel we can do that until the federal government legislates in favour of same-sex marriage. Yes, we’re still waiting! My good friend and the member for Sydney, Alex Greenwich, says in many ways our wedding was the catalyst for the marriage equality campaign which today is still running across the country. Despite the fact that no government has had the guts to change the law, a lot has changed in more than a decade. Now almost 80% of the public support our right to marry. Slowly but surely we are making progress. When we tied the knot we were overwhelmed by support. The ceremony was broadcast on 2Day FM’s Kyle & Jackie O Show (when I was their out and proud newsreader) and replayed across the Austereo network. It was broadcast live on Seven’s Sunrise, covered in New Idea and the Sunday papers, and made the nightly TV news. We received over 20,000 emails of support! I can still remember the big day clearly. In the ‘congregation’ were family, friends, supporters and many celebrities including the Australian Idol hosts, Daryl Somers, Carlotta, Kate Fischer, Chris Bath...
My Kyle & Jackie O story – one door closes…

My Kyle & Jackie O story – one door closes…

The weeks after our wedding were a whirlwind. We honeymooned in Port Douglas and were amazed at the amount of people who would come up to us at the resort or on the street and talk about it. Read Part 1 of my Kyle & Jackie O Show story. After we returned to Sydney there were a bunch of media interviews to do. We did newspaper features and TV interviews, even with the ABC’s flagship current affairs show 7:30. In Canberra senator Lyn Alison of the Democrats spoke about us in federal Parliament and put up an ill-fated bill to legalise gay marriage. At the time public support was not as strong for marriage equality, so the bill she proposed didn’t even have the support to get a chance in parliament. My Kyle & Jackie O Show story – part 2. But something had changed. The issue of marriage equality was now firmly on the public agenda. Back at 2DayFM it was never dull. Kyle & Jackie were ramping up my Scare Geoff segments which included me skydiving while reading the news! Amazingly I land on a target where the Australian Idol contestants and listeners were waiting to welcome me. I also read the news from a shark pool, a dunking machine, was dropped in the middle of the desert (and had to find my way back to Sydney) and even had crocodiles let loose in my studio in the middle of a news bulletin! I also remember one morning my news bulletins were sabotaged. My script had been secretly changed with wrong words added and mismatched audio grabs. I stumbled through – ‘what was...
My Kyle & Jackie O story – part 2

My Kyle & Jackie O story – part 2

I wondered why Jason was in the studio that morning. It dawned on me that he was probably taking part in one of the infamous “Scare Geoff” segments. I was asked to go across to the main studio where I found Jason sitting on a chair next to a stern looking Jackie. That made me even more nervous. What were they up to? Then after 3 minutes of silence while a song played, Kyle told me I was about to experience a life-changing moment. To be honest I was terrified, but then Jackie looked at me and told me Jason had something to say to me. With that Jason got down on one knee and said: “Geoff will you marry me?” Wow! I was in shock. It was the last thing I expected. Of course I said yes! The rest of the day remains blur, but my phone kept ringing all day with friends congratulating us. That night the enormity of what we were doing hit us. We were going to get married live on air. Would the gay community think it was a stunt to get ratings? Would our families attend? How could we do this, with same sex marriage not legal in Australia? The next four weeks were a whirlwind, and if it wasn’t for promotion’s supremo Chrissie Maus I would have gone mad. But everything came together. The gay community got right behind us, we decided to brand it Sydney’s first “illegal” gay wedding to highlight the ridiculous laws, our families wholeheartedly agreed to attend, and we were excited that listeners and supporters would attend the ceremony. The...
My Kyle & Jackie O story – part 1

My Kyle & Jackie O story – part 1

After getting back with Kyle & Jackie O for a one-off reunion earlier this week it feels like a good time to remember all the years I had working with them. So I’ve written a 3-part blog on my Kyle & Jackie O story. I first became friendly with Jackie in about 2001 when I was working the drive shift with Jamie Angel at the old 2DayFM studios in Bondi Junction. Jackie and Kyle were on after the drive show with the iconic Hot 30 Countdown and just about every teenager listened to hear the latest hits. Remember, this was before the internet had become popular and there was no iTunes, You Tube or Spotify! I can remember getting my hands on a copy of Kylie Minogue’s hot new song “Can’t Get You Out Of My Head” and racing it into their studio so they could play it first in Australia – that really got our friendship going! I love the musicals and I started inviting Jackie to shows like Mamma Mia and Priscilla. Kyle had no interest – haha! I’m sure Jackie will remember the Priscilla after party where one hit wonder Charlene was flown in to perform her one and only hit – the sugary and corny “Ive Never Been To Me”. There was also the time when we met Ben Elton, Brian May and Roger Taylor from Queen after We Will Rock You. A certain newsreader spilt an entire glass of champagne over one of their Armani suits, thankfully Mr. Elton acted like nothing happened and continued the conversation! Things really started happening when one day I got to work with virtually no voice after...
My ‘illegal gay wedding’ 10 years on

My ‘illegal gay wedding’ 10 years on

Last night Jason and I had a quiet dinner to celebrate the 10th anniversary of our so-called “illegal gay wedding”. It’s amazing how quickly the decade has passed since we very publicly tied the knot. We chose to make it public to raise awareness of the fact that we couldn’t legally marry, but in spite of that the ceremony was as real and important to us as any of our ‘straight’ friend’s weddings. So you might be surprised that we didn’t throw a big party to celebrate the anniversary? Well, we don’t feel we can do that until the federal government legislates in favour of same-sex marriage. Yes, we’re still waiting! My good friend and the member for Sydney, Alex Greenwich, says in many ways our wedding was the catalyst for the marriage equality campaign which today is still running across the country. Despite the fact that no government has had the guts to change the law, a lot has changed in the decade. Now almost 80% of the public support our right to marry. Slowly but surely we are making progress. When we tied the knot we were overwhelmed by support. The ceremony was broadcast on 2Day FM’s Kyle & Jackie O Show (when I was their out and proud newsreader) and replayed across the Austereo network. It was broadcast live on Seven’s Sunrise, covered in New Idea and the Sunday papers, and made the nightly TV news. We received over 20,000 emails of support! I can still remember the big day clearly. In the ‘congregation’ were family, friends, supporters and many celebrities including the Australian Idol hosts, Daryl Somers, Carlotta, Kate Fischer, Chris Bath and Sonia Kruger....