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La Cage in Des Moines interview by Arthur Breur The Gospel According Special Performance to benefit One Iowa

In 1973, French playwright Jean Poiret’s play La Cage aux Folles premiered in Paris. Ten years after the release of the play, it was reproduced as a musical on Broadway, with the dialog and plot written Christopher Sieber by Harvey Fierstein, and wonderful, catchy, and touching songs written by Jerry Herman. La Cage aux Folles tells the story of an unconventional family—two gay men, Georges and Albin, who are parenting a son while running a night club that features Albin as the star

attraction… in drag—and the mayhem that happens when their son introduces his girlfriend’s very conservative—and politically connected—family with his own. This month, a new national touring production of La Cage aux Folles will start its run with performances at the Des Moines Civic Center, October 11-16, starring George Hamilton as Georges and Christopher Sieber as Albin. Some proceeds from the performance on Thursday, October 13, will go to One Iowa, the state’s largest organization working to protect marriage equality. (Go to for details.) The ACCESSline’s Arthur Breur had the distinct pleasure of getting to chat with Mr. Sieber while he was on break from rehearsing the upcoming show. You’re going to be performing in La Cage from the 11th through the 16th at the Civic Center in Des Moines. Now, in the most recent Broadway revival, you got to play Georges opposite Harvey Fierstein—who who wrote the “book” for the musical La Cage aux Folles—playing Albin (aka “Zaza”). What insights to the show did you get from working with him? Well, the fun part is, we’ve known each other for twenty years. We’ve been friends for twenty years, but we’d never actually worked together. So when they asked me to play

TTLA CAGE continued page 5

“Silver Screen” theme reigns at Nov. 13th AIDS Project of Central Iowa fundraiser

It’s Hollywood a la Des Moines at this year’s 25th annual auction and live performance fundraiser…and you can be part of scene! Dress as your favorite movie star (costume prizes will be awarded), come prepared to purchase enticing silent and live auction items and packages and enjoy a spectacular show dedicated to movie music and idols. This year’s emcees are Steve Daly and Brian (Stinky) Smith. Now, that’s entertainment! That’s the benefit 2011! Held in Des Moines’s newly-renovated Embassy Suites on the River Grand Ballroom, this year’s event will begin with a silent and live auction from 5 to 6:30 pm followed

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by a select variety of entertainers and production numbers. There will also be special audio/visual tributes to past Benefit performers as well friends who have died due to complications of AIDS. Justin Jarrell, who provided ambiance for the recent “Fetish Party”, will create a lavish Hollywood mood in the ballroom. A limited number of reserved VIP tables of ten are available at $1,000, $500 or $350, determined by their proximity to the stage. Open seating is $25 per person. To reserve a VIP table or to advertise in the event program, contact Nathan Ritz at, Individual tickets will be available at The Project, 711 E. 2nd St. in Des Moines, by phone at 515-284-0245, online at, or at the door. the benefit 25th Anniversary planning committee members include Jim Baldridge, Keeli Comito, Wally Glover, Alana Hillgartner, Jesus Lopez, Emil Loya, Alden Ritz, Nathan Ritz, Kellie Schmidt, Jenny Schreck, Jim Sterba, Frank Vaia and David Vitiritto.

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to Kristin Chenoweth Singer talks country music, queers, and Christians Interview by Chris Azzopardi TT

Interview on page 11

What’s Inside: Section 1: News & Politics

Advertising rates 3 From the Editors 3 Iowa’s District 18 Special Election 4 Ally of the Month 4 Supporting One Iowa 5 The Center Becomes the New Des Moines Pride 6 Cedar Rapids Speaker Series 6 Remarkables: “Of Fingers and Toes…” by Jonathan Wilson 7 Repeal of DADT for LGBs but not Ts by Rev. Irene Monroe 7 Creep of the Week 8 Minor Details: “We Keep Expecting…” by Robert Minor 9 “Does Social Media Change How…?” by Tony E. Hansen 9

Section 2: Fun Guide

Entertainment Picks for September Kristin Chenoweth, interview by Chris Azzopardi The Outfield Deep Inside Hollywood Cocktail Chatter Recurring Events, Statewide Hear Me Out (Music Reviews) Wired That Way: “LGBT on the go” by Rachel Eliason The Gay Wedding Planner Partying Hard:“Mr. Olympia 2011” by Joshua Dagon Out of Town: Michigan Vacation Book Worm Sez: The Last Deployment Comics and Crossword Puzzle

Section 3: Community

Greater Omaha GLBT Network Wilson Resource Center First Friday Breakfast Club: Dr. Dwight C.Watson Inside Out: “Going Home” by Ellen Krug Twenty Questions, a 10-part transgender series “Gaycation Packing” by Robert Hoffmann Business Directory Ask Lambda Legal: “Faith Based Foster Care Agencies” “The Morning After” by Robert Hoffman

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ACCESSline Page 2

Section 1: News & Politics


Section 1: News & Politics


ACCESSline Page 3

From the Editors

PUBLICATION INFORMATION Copyright © 2011, All rights reserved. ACCESSline P.O. Box 2666 Cedar Rapids, IA 52406-2666 (319) 550-0957

ACCESSline is a monthly publication by Breur Media Corporation. The paper was founded in 1986 by the non-profit organization ACCESS (A Concerned Community for Education, Safer-sex and Support) in Northeast Iowa.

Arthur Breur, Editor in Chief Angela Geno-Stumme, Managing Editor

Q Syndicate Rex Wockner News Service Contributors: Bruce Carr; Joshua Dagon; Rachel Eliason; Beau Fodor; Tony Hansen; Robert Hoffman; Ellen Krug; Bob Minor; Rev. Irene Monroe; Tony Schlichenmeyer; Susan Somer, Lamda Legal; Frank Vaia; Jonathan Wilson Publication of the name, photograph or likeness of any person, business or organization in ACCESSline is not to be construed as any indication of sexual orientation. Opinions expressed by columnists do not necessarily reflect the opinions of ACCESSline or the LGBT+ community. Letters to the editor may be published. We cannot be responsible for errors in advertising copy. We welcome the submission of original materials, including line drawings and cartoons, news stories, poems, essays. They should be clearly labeled with author/artist name, address, and phone number. We reserve the right to edit letters and other material for reasons of profanity, space, or clarity. Materials will not be returned. A writer’s guide is available for those wishing to submit original work. Advertising rates and deadlines are available at All ads must be approved by ACCESSline’s editorial board.

The Day Don’t Ask Don’t Tell Ended in Iowa by Angela Geno-Stumme

Americans. And yet, with this amazing right affirmed, Iowans are afraid to lose another right—the right of marriage.

Local Worries

The day ‘Don’t Ask Don’t Tell’ ended for the country was an odd day for Iowans. On one hand, it was one of the most celebrated days because it marked the end of inequality in the military. On the other, it was a day of fear; because the Democratic majority in Iowa’s Senate was possibly ending, and a proposed amendment to ban gay marriage was rearing its ugly head… again.

National Progress

The military directive of Don’t Ask Don’t Tell is officially finished. Now, the soldiers of this country are free to be as proud of who they are, as much as they are proud of the country they fight for. There is no need to hide away in their selective closets; they are now free to march, holding their flags high. The American flag right next to the rainbow one. It’s an emotional image, as it should be. America is proud of their soldiers, and now we can be proud of our GAY soldiers as well. President Barack Obama stated as he signed the repeal: “As of today, patriotic Americans in uniform will no longer have to lie about who they are in order to serve the country they love,” he said. “As of today, our armed forces will no longer lose the extraordinary skills and combat experience of so many gay and lesbian service members.” Now every man or woman regardless of sexual orientation, color or creed can choose to put their life on the line to protect the lives and rights of others. It is an amazing day for all

The Iowa Senate has had a Democratic majority that has put off a ban on same sex marriage, however; this majority is only one seat and it is a seat that is now up for election. A special election, actually, that can break the Democratic majority. Now, not all Republicans are bad, but historically the party is against same sex marriage and has been in Iowa. The House has already passed a ban against gay marriage and without a Democratic majority in the Senate it is feared the ban would be able to pass. With one more Republican seat in the Senate, it would be one more step towards Iowans losing their rights, and ending marriages across the state. One Iowa Executive Director Troy Price stated: “Until now, we have been able to prevent a discriminatory and unconstitutional marriage ban from going on the ballot with pro-equality supporters in the Senate. But marriage equality is now facing a serious and credible threat. If we lose this seat, we lose a majority in the Senate and we face a marriage ban on the ballot.” The future in Iowa is murky, to say the least. While we celebrate our gay soldiers now being acknowledged and given the rights they deserve. The fear of that one Senate seat hides in the shadows, because it could be the vote that ends marriage equality in Iowa. And so while we celebrate our out and proud gay soldiers, remember that not all wars are fought abroad. That the battle for equality is still being fought at home and that vigilance is also a mark of a soldier.

Marcellus Andrews Update ACCESSline reported that on Friday, August 19, 2011, Marcellus Richard Andrews was attacked and beaten with a baseball bat in Waterloo, Iowa, and that Andrews died that weekend at University of Iowa Hospitals and Clinics after being taken off life support. On September 8th it was announced that Paris Akeem Anding of Waterloo had been arrested and charged with second degree murder in connection with the attack. The crime is not being pursued as a hate crime, a fact which has caused many to question the strength of Iowa’s hate crime laws.

Scholarship Created

Andrews danced in the Union Missionary Baptist Church drill team, “The Crusaders.” A cosmetology school graduate, he intended to go on to study interior design at Hawkeye Community College. A scholarship fund in the memory of Marcellus Andrews has been set up at Veridian Credit Union by members of the Crusaders Drill Team. According to Waterloo Cedar Falls Courier, Crusaders member Alexis Wright said that money from the fund will be used for several causes, including book stipends for incoming freshman at Hawkeye Community College and assistance with the cost for school uniforms and shoes for students at local schools. “In spite of all the tragedy in his death, he left with the message to continue on and to strive to do better… The main reason with the book stipend is because he was trying to further his education,” Wright told the Courier.

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Section 1: News & Politics

Iowa’s District 18 Special Election In September, 2011, Iowa’s Republican Governor Terry Branstad offered Iowa State Senator Swati Dandekar (D-Marion) a position on the Iowa Utilities Board. Mid month, Senator Dandekar announced her acceptance of the position and her resulting retirement from the Senate.

Cindy Golding On September 22, Cindy Golding, GOP co-chair for Linn County, was nominated by Republicans to be their candidate in the election. At the time of publication, Democrats had not elected their nominee (the convention is scheduled for Wednesday, September 28), but Liz Mathis, formerly a nightly TV anchor on KCRG, is expected to be the Democrat candidate. She is currently unopposed for the nomination.

Liz Mathis Since the general election in 2010, Iowa’s Senate has had a one-seat (26-24) Democrat majority. This put Senator Michael Gronstal (D-Council Bluffs) as the majority leader, and provided him the opportunity to decide which legislation would come before the senate. Among other legislation, Senator Gronstal has

specifically blocked any amendment that would challenge Iowa’s marriage equality. Marriage equality for same-gender couples was achieved with the Iowa Supreme Court’s unanimous 2009 decision in the Varnum v. Brien case, in which the court ruled that the state’s 1996 “one-man, one woman” marriage law denied same-gender couples the equal protection promised by Iowa’s constitution. Should a republican be elected in Senate District 18 on November 8, Gronstal would no longer be able to prevent specific legislation from coming before the state senate. It only would take a simple majority vote of both houses of Iowa’s legislature voting for an amendment to Iowa’s constitution, two sessions in a row, to get the amendment added to the next general election. Iowa’s House of Representatives already passed a marriage amendment in 2011. Should the amendment also make it through the senate during this session, prior to the 2012 election, the second legislative votes could happen in the 2013-2014 session. Should the amendment pass both houses during that session, the amendment could put to a popular vote during the general election in November of 2014.

It is unclear which way a general vote on marriage equality would go, particularly three years in the future. Polls show that a narrow margin of voters currently are in favor of giving samegender couples the legal protections and responsibilities that come with equal marriage rights. Further, such polls have continually shown an increase in acceptance for marriage equality. However, out-of-state special-interest groups, such as the highly- (but very secretly-) funded National Organization for Marriage would undoubtedly spend enormous amounts of money encouraging voters to pass the amendment with the aid of in-state social conservative and hard-right religious groups such as The FAMiLY Leader.

There’s one life and there’s no return and no deposit One life so it’s time to open up your closet Life’s not worth a damn ‘til you can say, hey world I am what I am — I Am What I Am, from La Cage aux Folles, Lyrics by Jerry Herman


Ally of the Month by Angela Geno-Stumme

Bishop Walter C Righter Walter C Righter helped advance gay rights and fight prejudice within the Episcopal Church. Righter served as bishop of Iowa from 1972 to 1988, and then went on to serve as assistant bishop at a Diocese in Newark, New Jersey. While serving Iowa he ordained the first female deacon and with his move to New Jersey, he ordained a gay man as deacon. With Righter’s ordination of Barry Lee Stopfel in 1990, charges of heresy were brought against Righter by other bishops, alleging that he violated the

doctrine of the church with Stopfel’s ordination. In 1996 the Episcopal Church court stated that it “has no doctrine prohibiting the ordination of homosexuals,” and that Righter did not contradict any “core doctrine” of the church. The bishop always insisted he was not trying to be revolutionary but that he was simply: “agreeing to ordain a person who had met all the tests every other person is expected to meet before ordination.” And after his trial he commented that “I think we’re making too much out of the bedroom.” Two openly gay bishops now serve the Episcopal Church and the church allows for ordination of gays and lesbians in most dioceses. It is speculated that formalized rites for samesex unions are up for debate at the church’s next General Convention. Presiding Bishop Katharine Jefferts Schori said: “The Episcopal Church can give thanks for the life of a faithful and prophetic servant.... His ministry will be remembered for his pastoral heart and his steadfast willingness to help the church move beyond old prejudices into new possibilities.” Walter C Righter died September 11th at the age of 87, following a long period of illness at his home in Pittsburgh.

OCTOBER 2011 SScontinued from page 1

LA CAGE that part opposite Harvey I said, “Of course! What, are you crazy? Of course I’m going to do that!” I jumped at the chance. We had a great time because it’s a very rare gift when you’re in a show where you love and know the person you’re playing opposite so well, where you end up being truly like the character that way. So that was the fun part: working with somebody who I really love and trust. And as to the insight, because he wrote it, he could change whatever he wanted—and correct me as well if I was doing it wrong, instead of the way he wanted the parts portrayed. The original [1983 Broadway production] was a big humongous, spectacular production, with dozens and dozens of “Cagelles”—both male and female—and this one is more like a play, which is what Harvey always wanted. He always wanted this to be a very real play, focused on the family. And that’s what we have here. As far as now switching to the other side, just watching Harvey, and knowing how he wanted the part to be played and the lines that he wrote to be said the way he wanted them, it was very insightful. So I’m, of course, stealing from his performance [laughs]. How is it working with George Hamilton? He’s absolutely lovely! He’s one of the most generous people I’ve ever worked with. He’s so self-deprecating, there’s not a diva bone in his body. It’s all about the work, and he’s just a sweetheart. He’ll do anything for anybody, he’s completely generous with everything—with acting, and time to listen and talk, and whatnot. He’s a true gentleman. We’ve only been rehearsing about three-and-a-half or four weeks, so we’re still getting to know each other, but we know each other well enough now to kiss at the end of the show! Now the start of this touring production of La Cage is starting in Des Moines. You’re a Midwest boy, right? Yeah, I’m from northern Minnesota, so I know Iowa and I know Minnesota, of course. My friends and I went to the Minnesota state fair this year, and I had t-shirts made that say “Barbarian” across the front of them. The people who “got it” were like, “Where did you get that t-shirt, I want it!” The other people were more, “What’s that? Is that some kind of team?” and we’d say, “Yes, it is!” Did you know that for your perfor-

Section 1: News & Politics mance on the 13th, part of the proceeds from that performance will go to One Iowa, which is the state’s largest organization fighting to protect marriage equality. Oh, terrific! You came out in 2003 during the production of the sitcom “It’s All Relative”… The funny thing about that is I didn’t necessarily “come out”—they put it in a magazine. I was out since, gosh, since high school, really, since I was eighteen. The first, I guess, “published” thing saying I was gay was 2003 during “It’s All Relative” on ABC. But I’ve been gay all my life, and I didn’t even know that anyone cared that much, to put it in a magazine. Do you find there’s a difference between television and stage as to whether an actor is out or not? Not any more. When I first started, I had a sitcom called “Two of a Kind” (19981999) with the Olsen twins and it was my first experience in Hollywood and having to deal with, you know, who I am. I had to talk to my executive producers, because they kept on saying, “Does your wife want to come out? We’ll fly your wife out.” And I said, “Well, here’s the deal: my wife’s a man.” [Laughs.] And I said, “So how do I handle this? I don’t know, because New York and LA are different things.” And they said if you make a big deal out of it, it’ll be a big deal, and if you don’t, it won’t. I never have made a big deal out of it and it’s never been a problem. The difference between people in New York and Hollywood is it’s the image they’re worried about. But I think it’s changed so much, with Ellen DeGeneres and her coming out in her famous “Puppy” episode [1997], and Neil Patrick Harris, and John Benjamin Hickey and myself on ABC, and all these other shows. Things have changed. It doesn’t really matter that much any more about the gay issue. I would imagine there still is a little bit of homophobia in Hollywood, but I haven’t been there for a while. But I know Broadway, please! “Welcome!” What should people look forward to in this performance of La Cage? The difference is that the productions that have toured in the past and that have been on Broadway have been humongous, lavish productions. Our show is very intimate. It’s very much about the family, focusing on this little club and life with this family. So it’s much smaller, it much more real. It’s still very, very fun, and exciting and thrilling, but it is focused on the reality of a family. The message comes through more strongly than it ever has before, about family.

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Supporting One Iowa The Civic Center of Greater Des Moines has partnered with One Iowa to help protect equality in Iowa. Marriage is threatened like never before in our state. For $75, you get a ticket to the October 13th performance of La Cage aux Folles and a pass to attend an exclusive cast party, with part of the proceeds going to support the efforts of One Iowa to protect equality. With a ticket purchase, One Iowa will be able to host house parties and conduct Speakers Bureau meetings across the state. This is a fun way to help protect the freedom to marry for all loving, committed couples across the state. La Cage tells the story of Georges, the owner of a glitzy nightclub in lovely Saint-Tropez, and his partner Albin, who moonlights as the glamorous chanteuse Zaza. When Georges’ son brings his fiancée’s conservative parents home to meet the flashy pair, the bonds of family are put to the test as the feather boas fly! There are only a limited number of

tickets available online. To help support One Iowa, follow the steps below to order your tickets: Visit: group_sales/e-tickets.php Enter code: OneIowa Select La Cage aux Folles for Thursday, October 13. (Important Note: The Thursday, October 13 performance is the only one available where a portion of the proceeds will go to support One Iowa with pass to attend exclusive cast party.) Enter Special Offer Code: OneIowa Follow instructions from http:// or call the Civic Center at 515-246-2340 to purchase tickets. Protect Iowa families while having fun watching “one family’s struggle to stay together...stay fabulous...and above all else, stay true to themselves!” See Ad on page 19 for more information on The Civic Center of Greater Des Moines’s La Cage aux Folles.

If you have built castles in the air, your work need not be lost; that is where they should be. Now put foundations under them. ~Henry David Thoreau

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Section 1: News & Politics


The CENTER becomes the new Cedar Rapids Speaker Series Grace A. Odums Des Moines Pride Center SHIFT Speaker Series 2011 features the following speakers:

On September 8 th 2011, Sandy Vopalka submitted her resignation as administrator of The CENTER in Des Moines. Amber and Tyler Miller volunteered to take over leadership of The CENTER. They spent the month of August re-organizing, cleaning, networking and communicating with the landlord at Nationwide All the stories, feedback, phone calls and drop-in visitors made September the busiest month the center has had to date. Record numbers from our community made their opinions and voices heard. On Friday night, September 23, 2011 an emergency community based meeting was called. An “Emergency Board” was voted in unanimously by over 40 members in attendance. A number of items were discussed, including: • The immediate separation of Equality Iowa from The CENTER, thus forming a new organization, tentatively called “The Des Moines Pride Center.” • The NEW Board needing to have a mandate. • The Emergency Board being elected until the end of this year. • The newly elected Board then appointed a President/Chair, Vice President/ Co-Chair, Secretary and Treasurer. • A new membership policy for the people who want to dedicate the time to the new center. • Focusing on visibility and fundraising through special events, youth- initiative programming, and support of gay weddings/marriages. • Wanting a voice for the larger LBGTQI community. • Creating more LGBTQI Youth Programs. • Making the Board reach out to the general LBGTQI community.

• A d d r e s s i n g continuing homophobia in the work place. The new center will still be working with the David Bohnett Foundation for a new computer and media center, and re-focusing on Youth and Senior on-site programming. The Pride Center is home to many LGBTQ groups and hosts numerous meet­i ngs for organizations such as the Iowa Corn Haulers, Transformations, P-PLAG, PITCH, Sunday Night Youth Group, and The Dykes of the Round Table! The Pride Center is also in the process of form­i ng an “Advisory Board” (re: Community Committee) and is asking everyone to put in their “two-cents” worth with this new group, to help us be the best and most supportive to OUR community, locally and even state-wide, via “satellite centers” coming soon in Iowa City, Mason City, and Dubuque, and, most importantly, to help keep us from making the same mistakes of the past. In moving forward, we need to respect the past, but look to the future, bringing in new energies. And make the changes necessary to be the best we can be in Iowa. Former Board Co-Chair Beau Fodor said, “We must keep moving forward, and show how progressive and inclusive Iowa can be. The past is the past, and we would not be where are now if it weren’t for the lessons learned. Here at the new Pride Center, we hope our mission, values, and impact resonate with everyone. We are at the beginning of a fabulous new and long journey, and need wide support. So, if you have any ideas, thoughts, questions or input, and would like to be part of one of the best LGBTQ centers in our great nation, please visit our web­s ite or e-mail us (dsmpridecenter@gmail. com). This is your LGBTQ Center. Be a part of it!”

Kathleen Martinez The Hotel Kirkwood October 31, 2011 11:00 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. Profit by Investing in Workers with Disabilities, Hosted by: Rockwell Collins. Assistant Secretary for Disability Employment Policy, advises the Secretary of Labor and works with all Department of Labor agencies to lead a comprehensive and coordinated national policy regarding the employment of people with disabilities. Blind since birth, Ms. Martinez has held multiple titles in organizations dealing with employment of disabled people and has helped develop governmental disability policies. $20 per attendee/FREE to attendees of Grace Odums Luncheon - Nov 3 & attendees of Courageous Leaders Conference - Nov 3 & 4.

Coralville Marriott Nov 3, 2011 11:30 a.m. to 1:00 p.m. A much sought after international conference speaker on diversity and strategic planning with system-wide and community-wide implementation. She is also an expert on change leadership and talent performance improvement and retention. In 2007, she has served as a keynote speaker at the SHRM National Diversity Conference. Her book Diversity Principles: Strategic Integration is a best seller at Diversity Conferences. If you register for Grace, you may attend Kathleen Martinez for FREE The purpose of Diversity Focus is to engage in the promotion and ehancement of diversity in the communities of Cedar Rapids and Iowa City, Iowa and surrounding areas, known as the Technology Corridor. More information can be found on the ad on page 23.

The more difficulties one has to encounter, within and without, the more significant and the higher in inspiration his life will be. ~Horace Bushnell

Section 1: News & Politics


ACCESSline Page 7

Remarkables by Jonathan Wilson Of Fingers and Toes and Two Dollar Bills

I read this interesting story in The Des Moines Register on August 27, 2011, complete with picture. It was about Yoandri Hernandez Garrido, a 37-year-old guy from Baracoa, Cuba. Turns out that the guy has six fingers on each hand and six toes on each foot. He’s known affectionately as “24.” Now mind you, these are fully formed and fully functional “extra” digits. And he’s not alone. There are enough people like him that there’s a name for it. He and others like him are polydactyl. The picture of his hands look like the hands of anyone else until you take a closer look, count fingers, recount fingers, and go, “Huh. How ‘bout that. Interesting.” The story got me to thinking about him, four-leaf clover, 2 dollar bills, and gay children of God. So what do Yoandri (“24”), four-leaf clover, 2 dollar bills, and gay children of God have in common? Try this: they all exist; they are completely authentic, valid, and “normal.” Not normative, I’ll grant you. Most people don’t have six fingers on each hand; most clover has three leaves; 2 dollar bills are not the customary currency in use today, and gay children of God are a minority demographic. But, so what? Yoandri functions just fine; he probably has a better grip than some. We consider it lucky to find that rare four-leaf

clover. I carry and spend 2 dollar bills all the time and find them readily accepted despite their unfamiliarity (other than the one time that a not-so-bright McDonald’s employee declined to accept one until her better educated manager said it would be okay). Often as not the cashier will buy my 2 dollar bill from the register right on the spot and cherish it or give it as a gift. And gay children of God have been around throughout human history, and they have made positive contributions to society for all of that time (and despite periodic renunciation, condemnation, discrimination, and even criminalization). We’ve been productive citizens despite the odds, which is to our credit. It makes the contributions all the more impressive. These examples are relevant in confronting those of our detractors who insist that being gay, or gay folks engaging in same-gender sexual intimacy, are not normal or natural. Our detractors are wrong. Clearly, the majority of human beings are not gay, and for them samegender intimacy is not normal or natural. Fair enough. They need to get over their parochialism. Gay people do exist. When we engage in intimacy with one another, it is perfectly normal and natural. We should not be taught otherwise. We should not

be closeted and encouraged, unwisely, to marry unsuspecting straight people. It’s not normal. It’s not natural. It’s contrived. It’s an abomination. I recently returned from another photographic safari to Africa. I was again struck with the remarkable diversity of species that evolution has generated. Truly remarkable and fascinating. One diverse species is not inherently better or worse than another. Each seems to contribute in its own unique way to the balance of nature. Over time, adaptive changes occur within species that strengthen them. That we live undeniably in an overpopulated world, it is arguably a good thing that homosexuality is gaining greater acceptance. Gay folks are capable of reproducing (I have two beautiful children), but less likely to do so than “breeders.” Gay people will be even less likely to reproduce if we’re not pushed into opposite-gender marriages. The Lord does work in mysterious ways. God created diversity and, as Yoandri demonstrates, continues to create diversity today. Human beings created discrimination. Who ya’ going to trust? Gay people look pretty much like everyone else. We have our strengths and weaknesses. Upon closer examination,

however, lo and behold, we are different than the majority in this one respect. As a society we need to get to the point of saying, non-judgmentally, “Huh. How ‘bout that. Interesting.” We’re getting closer to that point every day.

One minute past the stroke of midnight on Sept. 20 the long-awaited repeal of President Bill Clinton’s 1993 “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” (DADT) policy went into effect. At precisely 12:01 a.m. EST, the popping of champagne bottles began along with cheers and tears celebrating the end of a repressive era that prohibited LGBTQ servicemembers from honestly and openly serving in the military. But the celebration was bittersweet. While our lesbian, gay and bisexual (LGB) servicemembers now have a policy in place to protect them from discrimination, the repeal of DADT doesn’t protect our transgender servicemembers. “While we are happy to see the end of ’Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell,’ we are troubled that the military still expels some members of our community simply because of who they are. Transgender people continue to serve our country honorably, and our country needs to do the same for transgender service members by reexamining this outdated ban,” Mara Keisling, executive director of the National Center for Transgender Equality, stated in a press release weeks before the DADT’s repeal. One of the reasons for transphobia in the military is its rigid adherence to antiquated notions of masculinity, manhood, and gender roles. The military has a binary view of gender; and, unfortunately, with that perspective, transgender

servicemembers as deemed medically and mentally unfit because of Gender Identity Disorder. Along with the military’s binary view of gender, its transphobia is institutionally maintained by its medical and conduct regulations. For example, the medical regulation for all enlistees is a physical examination. If an enlistee has had or is thinking about having genital surgery, that decision or outward expression of thought can easily become grounds for disqualification.  But that’s not the end of the military’s egregious display of transphobia. If an enlistee has not had genital surgery or isn’t thinking about genital surgery, but identities as transgender, that too is grounds for disqualification. The military deems the enlistee as having a mental health condition. While it is easy to disclose the myriad of ways in which the military is egregiously transphobic, perhaps the same disclosure needs to be done to us―the LGBQ population and our organizations.  So the question that needs to be put on the table is this: Why in another historical civil rights moment won ending discrimination for all in the LGBTQ community, our transgender population, once again, is left out?  Did we not learn our shameful lessons after the debacle of the 2007 Employment Non-Discrimination Act (ENDA) fallout? 

During an entire campaign to win an inclusive ENDA, we didn’t. And what was expected to be a historic vote on HR 2015, the Employment Non-Discrimination Act, or ENDA, in the House, the LGBTQ community got a version of ENDA that did not include gender identity. Sadly, however, we have done it again with the repeal of DADT. Our LGBQ civil rights organizations’ best efforts to explain how and/or why transgender Americans are, once again, excluded from this historical landmark decision, realize this is not their endpoint on this issue, but rather it begins anew trans-focused organizing strategies that will redouble their efforts to do more. “Today we’re one step closer to full equality, but we’re not there yet. This victory only strengthens our resolve to continue our work toward open transgender military service. And with your help, the Task Force will continue to push for that inclusion,” Rea Carey, Executive Director of the National Gay and Lesbian Task Force stated in a press release. “We’re mobilizing grassroots efforts to help pass trans-inclusive nondiscrimination laws in cities across the nation; ...The DADT repeal serves to remind us that, with a lot of hard work, we’re getting closer―but we can’t let up until we get there.” Here in Boston, LGBTQ activists and our allies are not letting up. At the steps of the State House on the first evening of the repeal of DADT, demonstrators staged a protest to draw attention to the fact that transgender Americans are still unable to serve openly

in the military. “I’m out here supporting my trans and les (lesbian) homies who are still DL (on the down low) in the Army because I know what it feels like to be dissed at home, church, Army, and the gay community,” Jamilla Davis, an African American lesbian from Roxbury told me. African American lesbians have been discharged at three times the rate at which they service, and Davis knows this from first-hand experience. To date, more than 13,500 LGBTQ servicemembers have been discharged under DADT. I would like to say that with the repeal of DADT the number of our servicemembers being discharged will stop. But it won’t. Our transgender servicemembers were not included.

So what do Yoandri (“24”), four-leaf clover, 2 dollar bills, and gay children of God have in common?

Jonathan Wilson is an attorney at the Davis Brown Law Firm in Des Moines, and chairs the First Friday Breakfast Club (, an educational, non-profit corporation for gay men in Iowa who gather on the first Friday of every month to provide mutual support, to be educated on community affairs, and to further educate community opinion leaders with more positive images of gay men. It is the largest breakfast club in the state of Iowa. He can be contacted at JonathanWilson@ or 515-288-2500.

Repeal of DADT for LGB’s, but not T’s by Rev. Irene Monroe

One of the reasons for transphobia in the military is its rigid adherence to antiquated notions of masculinity, manhood, and gender roles.

ACCESSline Page 8

Section 1: News & Politics

Creep of the Week by D’Anne Witkowski Michele Bachmann

issue of Bachmann’s staunch support of the anti-gay marriage amendment to the Constitution. And the weird thing about her husband running a mental health clinic that tries to “cure” gays with prayer. And then there’s that “Marriage Vow” she signed in Iowa that, among many other things, affirms her “vigorous opposition to any redefinition of the Institution of Marriage—faithful monogamy between one man and one woman—through statutory-, bureaucratic-, or court-imposed recognition of intimate unions which are bigamous, polygamous, polyandrous, same-sex, etc.” For example, can we really hold it against her that her straw poll win in Iowa is largely credited to “Christian” GOP organizer Peter Waldron, who happens to have ties to Bishop Martin Ssempa, who happens to be one of the main proponents of the My dear Gaymericans, it has come to “kill the gays bill,” a measure that seeks to my attention that there is some concern make homosexuality punishable by death about a woman named Michele Bachmann. in Uganda? The scuttlebutt is that she’s anti-gay and But hey, we’re talking about a woman possibly insane and that should the End of who considers John Eidsmoe, her profesDays occur and she become President of the sor at Oral Roberts University, a mentor. United States, LGBT people would be in very Eidsmoe’s views about homosexuality are serious trouble. extreme, to say the least. I’m here today to My dear Gaymericans, it As Right Wing Watch assure you that Bachout, this guy is has come to my attention that points mann does not judge. a big believer in ex-gay She said so herself on there is some concern about a therapy and thinks that Meet the Press. She woman named Michele Bach- gays are out to destroy said it right to David society and “will recruit mann. Gregory’s face. And our children into homoyou can’t lie to a man sexuality, voluntarily or with a face like that. I mean, look at him. He involuntarily.” looks like a silver-haired Labrador retriever This is, of course, utter bullshit, as any puppy in a necktie. Not even Michele Bach- sensible person knows. But we’re not talking mann would lie to a dog wearing a tie. about a sensible person here. We’re talking But she might evade his questions. about Michele Bachmann so it’s only fair that Which she did, though her unwillingness the standard not be so high. to stand by her past comments about lesbian and gay people only proves how non-judgmental she truly is in her heart and her soul. “I am running for the presidency of the United States. I am not running to be anyone’s judge,” Bachmann told Gregory. “I ascribe honor and dignity to every person no matter what their background. (Gays and lesbians) have honor and they have dignity.” See? Homos have honor and dignity. So kind of her to notice. But for some reason, Gregory just wouldn’t let the whole “you’ve said super shitty things about gay people in the past” thing go. He dragged out comments she made in 2004, like when she called being gay “a very sad life” that’s “part of Satan.” She also said, “It leads to the personal enslavement of individuals. Because if you’re involved in the gay and lesbian lifestyle, it’s bondage. It is personal bondage, personal despair, and personal enslavement. And that’s why this is so dangerous.” I would like to take this opportunity Um, okay. I can see how she might to congratulate Puerto Rican Sen. Roberto think that bondage is dangerous, though it Arango on his weight loss. I realize that, might just be that her only experience with right now, Arango is in the international bondage is that scene from Pulp Fiction. Still, spotlight for “sexier” things, namely posting enough with the bondage talk, lady. nude photos of himself to the gay meet-up Oh, and, “We need to have profound app Grindr, but what’s being lost in all the compassion for people who are dealing with hysteria is that this man really did shed some the very real issue of sexual dysfunction in serious pounds. And that’s hard. their life, and sexual identity disorders.” Anyone who has ever been overweight But, I mean, so what? That was then and can tell you that it is not easy to go from a this is now. She’s not judging gays now, end doughy guy with a double chin to a shirtof story. Well, I mean, there is that whole less stud muffin posing in front of a mirror

Roberto Arango


Rick Perry

with a cell phone strategically covering your face. All you have to do is Google the guy to see for yourself. Mind you, you’ll also see a photo of Arango showing all of the boys on Grindr his a**hole, but let’s not jump to conclusions here. In fact, Arango has a perfectly reasonable explanation for why nude photos of him exist. As he told a Puerto Rican TV show, “You know I’ve been losing weight. As I shed that weight, I’ve been taking pictures.” A totally reasonable, normal reason to take pictures of yourself shirtless, am I right? As for the anal-photo, everyone knows that’s a very standard post-weight loss pose. In fact, I’m fairly certain such shots exit of both Florine Mark and Jennifer Hudson. That doesn’t make them gay. So common is this kind of photo that So how about that Gov. Rick Perry, eh? most people don’t recall that such a photo Awesome alert! Am I right? of them even exists until said photo ends “I wish Rick Perry was my daddy and/ up, say, on the Internet. Even if said photo or boyfriend,” say all gays everywhere, is clearly taken in front of a mirror with obviously. the cell phone you have strategically and Not that Perry is gay. In fact, he recently awkwardly positioned next to your bare pinkie swore that he wasn’t gay by telling ass in order to accomplish taking said photo a group of conservatives, “I can assure you while alone. that there is nothing in my life that will “I don’t remember taking this particular embarrass you if you decide to support me picture but I’m not saying I didn’t take it,” for president.” Arango said. “I’d tell you if I remembered Not that folks aren’t trying to dig stuff taking the picture but I don’t.” up. “Rick is a closet homo” rumors have See? He’d tell us if he remembered. been flying for years, but nothing has really He’d tell us! stuck. Granted, the weight loss excuse doesn’t Of course, Perry can’t be gay. After all, explain how Arango’s nude photos ended up he is “a marriage champion,” according to on Grindr or how he had a profile on Grindr National Organization for Marriage presiin the first place. dent Brian Brown. And if there’s one thing But perhaps Arango, an unmarried gays want to destroy, it’s marriage. guy, just wanted a place to show off his new Brown made his declaration after and improved physique. Maybe he learned Perry signed a NOMfrom former New York sponsored pledge that Rep. Anthony Weiner’s “Rick is a closet homo” he would do everything mistakes that girls just rumors have been flying for in his power to keep don’t dig it when guys years, but nothing has really marriage out of the send them unsolicited clutches of the queers. photos of their junk. stuck. “ Perry m a kes And so he chose a bunch crystal clear that, contrary to the convenof homos for his audience instead because tional wisdom, gay marriage is going to be they just love that sort of thing. Though as it turns out, Arango has a (an) even bigger issue in 2012 than it was pretty rocky relationship with Puerto Rico’s in 2008,” Brown said about Perry’s pledge signing, “because the difference between LGBT community. According to Pedro Julio Serran of the the GOP nominee and President Obama is leading LGBT rights organization Puerto going to be large and clear.” I would like to make a comment about Rico Para Todos, “This isn’t a moment to how the people of America have far more kick someone when he’s down, but I have important things to worry about in 2012 to denounce Sen. Roberto Arango’s complicthan ladies marrying ladies and guys marryity with a fundamentalist agenda that ing guys, but no doubt this {ITAL is} a big promotes the exclusion and marginalization concern for folks who really need to pull of lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender their heads out of their NOM-holes long people.” enough to take a good look around. He reportedly voted in favor of a ban Still, no matter who gets the Republican on gays adopting children as well as “Resonomination, I guarantee that the difference lución 99,” a state constitutional anti-gay between them and Obama will be pretty marriage amendment. obvious. Marriage pledge or no. Serran says that “violating his constiBy signing the pledge, Perry has vowed tutional duty to guarantee equality for all to support a anti-gay marriage amendment should be the real reasons for his resignato the U.S. Constitution, defend the Defense tion.” Unfortunately, like most anti-gay poliof Marriage Act in court, support the overticians who get caught in gay sex scandals, turning of Washington D.C.’s marriage he likely cares more about getting caught with his pants down than the damage his equality law, and, most bizarrely, to round politics have wrought on the lives of LGBT up a posse to “investigate harassment of traditional marriage supporters.” Because Puerto Ricans. Arango has since resigned from the that’s apparently a problem so big that it senate in order to concentrate full time on needs to be handled at the executive branch his weight-loss plan. TTCREEPS continued page 10

Section 1: News & Politics


ACCESSline Page 9

Minor Details: And We Keep Expecting Them to Be Rational It’s an important point that right-wing There are a number of reasons for propagandists get, but again and again I hear this. The first is the political one that seems so many of us miss. As a result, our words and to confound the Democratic Party and its actions often fall ineffectively on deaf ears and leaders. closed minds. Yet it’s a calculated tactic by Republican We keep trying to understand how those consultants. And their leaders—from Congress opposed to human rights, and other progres- to FOX News—practice it well. sive positions can logically think, talk, and When the President essentially gives respond the way they do. And the answer is, the political right-wing what it wants while it’s not rational. getting in return a few things it doesn’t really A logical argument is a beautiful thing care about, the response is not an appreciato observe, but it’s not tive “thank you.” It’s what wins the day when In the 2010 Democratic a response that looks dealing with obstructionthe next battle lame duck Congress, the toward ists who prefer that the to get even more. US return to a pre-New economic and political rightIn the 2010 Deal era. And the expec- wing couldn’t care less about Democratic lame duck tation that logic will the economic LGBT issues except their ability Congress, convince them, coupled and political right-wing with constantly acting to inspire the religious right- couldn’t care less about surprised that “they’re wing. LGBT issues except not thinking rationally,” their ability to inspire misunderstands how the dominant voices in the religious right-wing. They knew how to our society control things. play the game. We could have the smartest President that Giving up “Don’t Ask Don’t Tell” was easy ever lived on the planet. We could rehearse for them as long as they could keep the Bush tax ad-nauseum and as clearly as possible the cuts, lower the estate tax, and attack programs facts, the data, the studies, and the logic of it all. such as Social Security. These would solidify We could wish, hope, and believe that people their long-term economic goals. were different. They were delighted to have that payroll But again and again we will run up against tax cut, since that would deprive income from the reality that the responses of the powers the Social Security Trust fund. In the long run, and believers in the religious, political, military they’ll use that to enforce their fear-inducing and economic right-wing are neither moved claim that Social Security is in trouble. by rationality nor “the facts.” The question The Democrats obliged them. Now we for those who expect otherwise is how long can predict that attempts to return the payroll will it be before they get this point and act tax to what it was, will be portrayed by rightaccordingly. wingers as a tax increase on working people.

While many on the left ask, “How can they be this way? Don’t they see they’ve got what they want?” the right-wing goes on strategically doing three things, none related to the logic of the situation: First, keep its believers scared and riled up. No matter what the reality, it will accuse “liberals” of getting everything they want because the fear of a “liberal” take-over is one of their successful boogey men. Second, keep control of the framing of the public and media debate by firing the next shot first in their economic class war before anyone else frames the next move. Don’t let a “liberal” way of putting things affect the framing. Always sound like outsiders to big, bad government. Third, leave the other side in the dust trying to figure out the logic of what you are saying, and looking for further arguments about facts and logic that Democrats think work no matter how they’ve failed in the past. For the religious right-wing, the facts don’t matter either. What matters is their identification with the beliefs of the speaker. It’s also fear driven, but in this case it’s the fear that someone will threaten what has become their cozy ideology. The ability to dismiss an argument because the person who gives it is not a “Christian” (as they understand it), protects them from doubt. To have a list of key doctrines is security. Thus, they must know where someone stands on women’s choice regarding abortion, the rights of LGBT people, gun control, the Bible, or prayer in the public schools. Their

There was a question posed that asked if social media is better than personal interactions. I argue that each of them shares qualities and have specific issues to be considered. Given the growth of social media (or online interactions) over the past few years (e.g. Facebook, blogs, Twitter, YouTube), this is becoming a normal part of the way we communicate and interact with people. The standard handshake, written letters and coffee shop meeting can become “virtual” roundtable discussions across the globe. Social media does change the way we interact and we have to understand that many of the rules hold for personal interaction also apply to online interactions. First, we should understand what happens in all interactions and meetings between people. Obviously, there is the basic greeting and introduction of each other. Whether this is a basic “Hello, how are you?” uttered between two people meeting in public or a person deciding to “add a friend” because they read something that they found mutually interesting, the greeting and introduction occur. Then, there is an exchange of ideas in order to find out more about each other’s opinions and interests. This

become apparent with good observation, but one still has to make an effort. With social media, that first step is mixed in with knowledge about that person where mannerisms and etiquette may not be obvious to each person. The question is whether that knowledge is important with meeting people or continuing to interact with people. The benefits of social media allow us to have instant interactions with people over great distances or reacquaint with people from our pasts. Similar to a person on a corner with a bullhorn, we can instantly broadcast to people, whether or not they are interested in receiving the message. We can instantly share with friends the stories and images that we find intriguing, funny or offending. We can show off creative (or not so creative) talents to the world and become an overnight sensation, or laughing stock, simply by posting a video. In social interactions, people can rise or fall based upon a single comment as well. We can instantly find people that share opinions and interests with our own, and thereby participate in a “virtual” community of like-minded people. In either interaction, we have to know responsible use of the interaction. If one means to have good reputation online or in person, we have to understand proper etiquette does not end at the keyboard. We have to understand that

Robert N. Minor, Ph.D., Professor Emeritus of Religious Studies at the University of Kansas, is author of When Religion Is an Addiction; Scared Straight: Why It’s So Hard to Accept Gay People and Why It’s So Hard to Be Human and Gay & Healthy in a Sick Society. Contact him at position on any one of these isn’t based in logic or facts, and having these hot button issues provides them with a quick, simplistic litmus test. Knowing where someone stands on one or more of these concerns provides relief from the threat and effort of further thought. It replaces the need for any struggle to sort through all the nuances that could otherwise threaten their dogma. And all this fits with the current anti-

TTMINOR DETAILS cont’d page 16

Does Social Media Change How We Interact by Tony E. Hansen can be of varying degree and depth of learning about each other, but this stage of interaction is important for deciding whether we continue with, and how much of, the interaction. The finale is to close the current interaction, but for social media how do we define “closing”. During the entire event, we are reading sets of cues, language, and forming opinions about what we observe. We demonstrate to people our cues, our ability to communicate or our willingness to communicate. Does online interaction lose important cues when meeting people? With social media, there is a starting point that may not happen in personal interactions. We can learn about people by reading public profiles or displays (e.g. video presentations, photos, previous posts or various sites). In personal interactions, someone has to make an active first step to meet people with or without knowledge of those people. A personal interaction may turn into online interaction if the friendship is to be maintained, but there is something that encouraged the personal interaction (e.g. the way they dress, the event they are involved, or the desire to meet people). Mannerisms, language, opinions and ethics can

Similar to a person on a corner with a bullhorn, we can instantly broadcast to people, whether or not they are interested in receiving the message.

we are measured by the people that we associate our lives. In addition, online messages have an infinite amount of places to go in social media regardless of assumed privacy settings. Thus, you want to be sure your material is appropriate for a public forum, and you are willing to take on the many different reactions people may have towards your material. Additionally, just because someone posted something does not give that value, merit or truthfulness. People lie in personal interactions

TTHANSEN continued page 33

ACCESSline Page 10 SScontinued from page 8

CREEPS level. The American Civil Liberties Union’s Ian Thompson hit the nail on the head when he declared that NOM’s marriage pledge was nothing more than a wish list for a group seeking “a free hand to attack the legitimacy of gay and lesbian couples and their relationships through the spread of fear and disinformation while remaining free from public scrutiny, accountability, or even active, organized opposition.” Personally I think we should be concerned about a presidential candidate who pledges to personally get involved in the squabbles that arise from uncivilized discourse. Yes, comments on all sides of the marriage debate can be ugly. But that’s not a national emergency worthy of a president’s attention. Plus, NOM’s assertion of constant harassment isn’t even based in an objective reality. “While organizations like NOM would like to have people believe that their supporters face systematic harassment and intimidation because of their anti-gay views, the reality is quite different,” Thompson continued. “Any incidents of actual harassment or political violence employed as part of a political campaign is entirely unacceptable, but…this is not the same thing as constitutionally protected (if heated) disagreement, criticism, and advocacy.” Thick skin doesn’t seem to be NOM’s strongpoint. Being criticized, lampooned, or even called names isn’t the same thing as systemic harassment worthy of national attention. Now if they were constantly

Section 1: News & Politics compared to pedophiles, or denied the right to visit their loved ones in the hospital because they “aren’t family,” or were fired from their jobs simply for being in a relationship with someone of the same sex, well, that would be something to worry about. Mind you, Perry is not the first GOP presidential contender to sign the pledge (Michelle Bachmann, Mitt Romney, and Rick Santorum have as well), signaling that the GOP is banking hard to the right as usual. As for whether or not Perry has anything in his life that will embarrass the anti-gay right, well, only time will tell.

Sally Kern

With the tenth anniversary of Sept. 11 behind us it’s important to reflect on the


state of national security. For weeks now, Kern stands by what she said and continues pundits have been waxing philosophically to say the same thing. about whether or not America is truly safer In an Aug. 31 interview with Peter today than it was a decade ago. Most of them LaBarbera, president of Americans for Truth are full of shit, of course. Making people take about Homosexuality, Kern restated and their shoes off and confiscating bottles of “clarified” her “gays are worse than terrorwater and cans of Aqua ists” line of thinking, Net at the airport is that her origiGays are a constant, proving Security Theater, pure nal comments were not and simple. After all, the devious threat to the people taken out of context or failures that allowed the of this nation and terrorists misunderstood. terrorists onto those are only a sometimes threat; “You know if you planes ten years ago just look at it in practiwere at the CIA and FBI therefore being gay is worse cal terms, which has level, not because some than murdering someone. destroyed and ended baggage screener missed the life of more people? a box cutter. Terrorism attack here in America or HIV/ Still, there’s one threat that not enough AIDS? Okay?” she said. “In the last fifteen people are talking about. A threat so dire that to twenty years, we’ve had maybe three it makes terrorists look like Teletubbies (still terrorist attacks on our soil with a little scary, mind you, but comparatively harm- over 5,000 people regrettably losing their less). That threat is, of course, homosexuality. lives. In the same time frame, there have But people are afraid to speak out. Afraid that been hundreds of thousands who have died the homosexuals will enact revenge on their because of, uh, having AIDS. So which one’s families if they expose the terrifying truth. the biggest threat?” One woman, however, is brave enough This is, of course, a completely faulty to speak in public about this terrible danger comparison. Not to mention the fact that our nation is facing. That woman is Oklahoma it rests on the assumption that all gay state legislator Sally Kern. people have AIDS and are using it as a You may remember that Kern has biological weapon of sorts. Also, since Kern spoken on this issue in the past. A few years is so concerned about AIDS, I’m sure we can ago she called homosexuality “the death knell expect her to sponsor bills to increase HIV/ of this country.” AIDS research and prevention funding in “I honestly think it’s the biggest threat Oklahoma. our nation has, even more so than terrorOf course, to Kern, gays are a sort of ism or Islam, which I think is a big threat,” biological weapon, sights set on all of the she said. young people in America. Because gays are She then compared homosexuality to all about making everybody gay. cancer: “If you got cancer or something in “And you know, every day our young your little toe, do you say, well, you know, people, adults too, but especially our young I’m just going to forget about it because the people, are bombarded at school, in movies, rest of me is fine? It spreads. OK? And this in music, on TV, in the mall, in magazines, stuff is deadly, and it’s spreading, and it will they’re bombarded with ‘homosexuality is destroy our young people, it will destroy normal and natural.’ It’s something they have this nation.” to deal with every day,” Kern said. “FortuMind you, Kern thought these comments nately we don’t have to deal with a terrorist were limited to the audience she was attack every day, and that’s what I mean.” addressing. But somehow in this day and See? That’s what she means. That age where everyone has a cell phone and gays are a constant, devious threat to the every cell phone has a camera and/or video people of this nation and terrorists are only recorder, her address was recorded and the a sometimes threat; therefore being gay is Gay and Lesbian Victory Fund had a field day worse than murdering someone. No duh making the video go viral. Kern and her right- and obviously. wing apologists make a big deal about how And to think that Kern is baffled that the video was “selectively edited,” and yet people call her homophobic and a bigot.

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Singer talks country music, queers, and Christians

One of the most happy-go-lucky ladies in showbiz, Kristin Chenoweth doesn’t get miffed very easily. But when she does, she does. And last year she did, after Newsweek published a commentary on the inability of gay actors to play straight roles. It upset the 43-year-old actress/singer so much she wrote an extensive letter to the magazine, calling the article “horrendously homophobic,” which was published shortly after the debacle—and which she spoke about during this interview. Chenoweth’s allegiance to the gay community goes way back to being a child and growing up in the South—a place she returned to for her latest album, Some Lessons Learned, her first of four to fully embrace her country roots. But her success hasn’t been confined to just the music business; Chenoweth broke out on Broadway, where she originated the role of Glinda in Wicked and most recently starred alongside

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...and November


Photo : Jeremy Cowart.

Will & Grace star Sean Hayes in Promises, Promises. There’s also been a book (2009’s A Little Bit Wicked: Life, Love and Faith in Stages), and several TV spots: Pushing Daisies, Glee and, coming soon to ABC, Good Christian Belles. So we had lots to talk about when we recently caught up with Chenoweth, who was on a dinner break from shooting her upcoming sitcom. During it, she discussed her history of dating gay men, her opinion on Michele Bachmann’s support of gay conversion clinics and being a little bit wicked. I can’t get over your character’s last name on Good Christian Belles: Cockburn. Carlene Cockburn. (Laughs) You can’t?! I can’t wait for my family to hear that one. I’m glad I’m not the only one who’s thought this. Oh no. Are you kidding? I was like, “Wait a minute!” But I just think the most important thing for me as an actress, because of the lines that come out of my mouth, is to just have to speak them and keep going, because they’re so funny and her name is so funny and the whole thing is just so great. I love it. Does your character have anything in common with April Rhodes, who you play on Glee? (Laughs) Probably not on paper, but they’re both pretty outlandish people. Carlene, though, is the antithesis of April. Speaking of April, when do you think we’ll see her on Glee again, considering the ban on guest stars for the third season of the show? I don’t know! Nobody’s mentioning it, so I’m hoping it happens. I certainly love her. She’s so fun to play. You grew up in Oklahoma, so country music is your roots. How is this album a reflection of that? It’s so funny, because I get asked, “Why a country album now?” But that’s how it all began for me—and, of course, why would anyone know that? It’s not something I’ve

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CHENOWETH been talking about a lot, but it’s the music I grew up listening to. One of my biggest influences is Dolly Parton, and when you look at the history of songs in musical theater and in country, they’re both usually great storytellers. I know just how lucky I am to do this kind of music. Getting to go to Nashville and sing this music that feels like home to me was a real gift, and one that I don’t take lightly. “What Would Dolly Do?” reminds me a lot of Dolly herself. I co-wrote that, and (producer) Bob Ezrin asked, “Who’s had the biggest influence on you country music-wise?” I said, “Dolly, without question.” And he said, “How would she approach it? Let’s think: What would Dolly do?” I said, “Bob, why aren’t we writing that song?” There’s something about her that I feel very attuned to. There’s only one Dolly. I’m not comparing myself, but I’m just saying her spirit and the way she looks at life is pretty similar to me. And the cover I did of hers (“Change”) is actually a very emotional thing and it reminded me—of course, how could I ever forget?—what an amazing songwriter she is. You know, I didn’t do a lot of covers. I did two covers, one of Carrie (Underwood’s) and one of Dolly’s, and I just love both of them. I love their music, I love their spirit; everything they stand for. It makes total sense, because, to me, both you and Dolly epitomize happiness. Oh my god, thank you. That’s the biggest compliment you could give me. It’s true. You are two of the happiest people I know of. So, tell me…what pisses you off? (Laughs) Oh gosh. I don’t really get mad that often. But I’m not going to lie, when I do, there’s a quiet that comes over me that is a little like whoa, and that happens when I don’t feel other people are prepared or doing their job or pulling their weight. I come from a family where my dad came from nothing and worked hard to get where he is, and he said, “Work hard, play hard, Kris,” and I guess that’s kind of been my motto in life. So when I see people squandering opportunities or having a sense of entitlement, that really makes me crazy. Because I don’t understand it. It’s

Photo : Jeremy Cowart. not a world I get. You’re driving, so how about something that ticks you off about other drivers? You know what, I don’t get road rage! I just don’t. I’m like, “OK, you cut me off—you must need to go somewhere a lot quicker than I do. Go on then.” And also, I’ve had so many people in my life be affected by car wrecks, and I’ve had a few myself, that I just have realized, “Eh, you know, life’s too short.” I know one thing that makes you upset, and that’s homophobic people.

I don’t like that, you’re right. Your letter in response to that Newsweek column said it all. Why was it important to address your feelings on that issue? To be honest with you, I wasn’t prepared for what was going to happen. I was on Broadway doing Promises, Promises, and I read the article and I actually thought it was pretty irresponsible. I’m not even talking about whether a person agrees with being gay or not, I’m talking about artistry and gay actors trying to play straight. It just made me mad, because I thought, “Well, I’ve played a prostitute, does that mean I am one? No.” I just thought it was a little bit of a bullying thing, and I honestly prayed about it—no kidding, I prayed about it. I wrote that letter in one fell swoop and I gave it to a good friend of mine to proofread, because the last thing I wanted to do was sound like an idiot, which I can do as well. So we sent it on and the next thing I know, they printed it. And by the way, I’m a big fan of the magazine, which is why I was so bummed. But I think that they felt bad and hopefully there’s been some discussion about it and some learning, because that’s what we’re here to do on this Earth, to learn our purpose. Well, one of my purposes in this life—since I’m a believer and a Christian— is to help people realize that not every Christian thinks that being gay is a sin. To reinforce your stance that gay

OCTOBER 2011 actors can indeed act straight, you made out with your Promises, Promises co-star Sean Hayes at the Tonys last year. It might’ve been a little jib. It might’ve been a little one. (Laughs) What was it like to make out with a gay man, and was that your first time making out with one? Well, let’s face it, my high school boyfriend is gay, so I don’t think it’s my first time making out with gay men—and I bet a lot of women don’t even know they’ve done it! And Sean Hayes is just a darn good kisser, what can I say? Wait, so you dated a gay man in high school? Yeah, and I’m like, “Well, that’s why we were such a great couple!” He didn’t pleasure me in any way but he helped me pick out my prom dress! Was he one of the first gay people you knew in Oklahoma? Yeah. I want to tell you something I know about myself: When I was in the second or third grade, I first heard the word “dyke,” and it was in reference to a girl in our school who was very, very tomboyish—and I didn’t really understand what the word was, but I knew I didn’t like the way it was said. And for some reason I’ve always been drawn to the person that was alone, and I don’t mean to make me sound like I’m Mother Teresa, because I’m not, but I’ve always been drawn to people who felt left out or different, and maybe it’s because I too felt different and unique. People would not think this of me, because there’s this perception of me that, “Oh, life’s been perfect and things have come so easily.” But let’s face it, my speaking voice is very interesting. Yes, I was a cheerleader but I also wanted to do all the plays, I was in renaissance choir, and I too felt a little bit like an outsider. I was always drawn to people who felt that way too. And sure, some of them were gay and I never did understand—I guess the word is fear. God made us all equal. He made me short, he made someone gay, he made someone tall—whatever it is, it’s not a sin; it’s how we’re made. And that’s the way I feel about it. It flies in the face of a lot of what Christians believe, but as I’m finding out there’s a lot of Christian people who think the same as me. So that’s my deal, and I think we should not be careful of the unknown but rather accepting and loving of it. As someone who’s Christian and supports the gay community, how do you feel about the pray-away-thegay program that Michele Bachmann supports? (Long pause) Um, you know what— you can have your opinion. One of the great things about being in this country is we get to freely say what we believe. I just don’t happen to agree with that. I like the pray part! (Laughs)

Well, one of my purposes in this life—since I’m a believer and a Christian—is to help people realize that not every Christian thinks that being gay is a sin.


the fun guide

The Outfield by Dan Woog Grappling with Donna Rose

David’s father was an academic, so the family moved often. Whether in California or Nova Scotia, though, sports provided a great way to make friends. David was “pudgy and klutzy” as a child, but in high school he discovered football and wrestling. Playing linebacker was fun, but grappling really drew him in. He worked out, lifted weights and molded his body to a masculine ideal. In 1979, at Halifax’s Dalhousie University, he became Canada’s Maritime Provinces 158-pound champ. He married, had a teenage son and embarked on a successful, lucrative career in information technology. But even those accomplishments did not fully satisfy David. He’d always been masculine—never effeminate or girly—yet he never felt he fit in. In 1999, he came out to his mother as transgender. She was stunned. The realization was almost as stunning for David. “My sense of myself as an athlete had been the biggest part of my identity for years,” he—now Donna Rose—says. “There had been two seasons in my life: wrestling, and getting ready for wrestling.” It was hard to let that go. “I love the sport for all it taught me about discipline, and pushing boundaries,” Donna says. “You stand there alone as an individual, before and after the match. The mat is a very lonely, unforgiving place.” Not unlike growing up feeling conflicted about your own gender. Donna understands now that wrestling gave David an outlet for the aggression he felt. Football and wrestling are, she notes, “tough, physical, violent sports.” David, she says, “made sure that the part of me that was Donna never expressed itself.” The Internet helped Donna express herself. She met other people like her, learned about transitioning, and realized that being transgender was not “a sentence to unhappiness.” Taking hormones was scary. “I couldn’t hide anything anymore,” she says. “This was real. It was a hard time. I loved my wife, my

son and my life. But that wasn’t real.” When Donna transitioned, her concepts of masculinity and femininity were “very traditional,” she notes. Along with all other signs of David, she got rid of her muscle mass. “I trained to be Donna for years. I wanted the slender build and feminine physique I thought was ‘ideal.’” When she started to date women, though, several were attracted to her shoulders. Slowly, Donna recognized that she did not want to “trade one closet for another.” Today, she says, she appreciates who she was, and what she did in the past. She looks forward to the future “without apology.” And she’s wrestling again. Donna wanted to wrestle as far back as 2005. But there was no place to do it. She had not been on a mat in 25 years. Her body was much different—as was her gender. And she was “significantly older.” The following year, she attended the Chicago Gay Games. She learned about an upcoming tournament in San Francisco. It was another life-altering experience. “I was 46, 47 years old,” she recalls. “All my strength was gone. It was like starting over. I was bruised, I felt bad, but the enjoyment was still there.” She won a gold medal—though that was not the point. “I wasn’t out to prove anything to anyone,” she says. “This was just for me.” But she was once again hooked on wrestling. She set her sights on the next Gay Games. Women’s freestyle wrestling has a maximum weight of 72 kilograms (158.75 pounds). Donna got down to her college weight. To find a coach and training partners, she had to drive clear across South Carolina. And she worried about coming out all over again, to coaches and fellow competitors. At the U.S. Open women’s freestyle championship in Cleveland last year, she planned not to self-disclose. She was not ashamed, but she feared that an announcement would “overshadow everything.” She did not want attention—just the chance to compete. Yet word got out. “My sport handled it very well—it was all low-key,” Donna says. She does not know if the reason was respect, or embarrassment. Donna does not wave a rainbow flag. “I’m not here to make a political statement,” she says. “I just want to live my life.” It’s a life that includes the U.S. Olympic team trials in Iowa next April. “I’m 50-plus years old,” she notes. “There aren’t many wrestlers my age. I go onto the mat, hope for a good showing, and look forward to shaking hands at the end, knowing I did my best. I appreciate everything I’ve got now.” Which includes the chance to train and compete in a sport she loves. The opportunity to try out for the Olympics. And the experience of doing it all as the gender she was meant to be all along. Dan Woog is a journalist, educator, soccer coach, gay activist, and author of the “Jocks” series of books on gay male athletes. Visit his website at He can be reached care of this publication or at

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Deep Inside Hollywood by Romeo San Vicente Zachary Quinto’s gay for Horror While Zachary Quinto (Heroes, Star Trek) has maintained what we might call a “respectful silence” about his private life, he’s certainly never shied away from taking on gay roles, most recently in the acclaimed Broadway revival of Angels in America. (Or from making an “It Gets Better” video, for that matter.) Now Quinto’s about to take on another gay role, this time on Ryan Murphy’s much-anticipated scary show for FX, American Horror Story, where he’ll portray the man who sells the haunted Victorian manor to the show’s lead characters, played by Dylan McDermott and Connie Britten. Quinto and Britten are slated to become pals on the show over the four episodes in which Quinto is slated to appear—he’ll first turn up on a two-part episode airing Halloween week. So if you like getting spooked by Spock (and really, who doesn’t?), tune in.

Billie Piper’s Love Life is all student/teacher–y

Once known as a ’90s British pop princess, Billie Piper has successfully leapt the wall into acting with her acclaimed turns as a companion on Doctor Who and as an entirely different kind of companion on Secret Diary of a Call Girl. But now Piper will be getting an apple (at the very least) on a new BBC drama called Love Life. Her character is described as a schoolteacher who, after a disappointing fling with a married man, discovers herself being attracted to one of her female students. TV school b oys have gotten hot for teacher on everything from Dawson’s Creek to Degrassi, but getting a lesbian spin, from the instructor’s POV no less, helps level the pop culture playing field of inappropriate romance. We’ll see how it works out when Love Life— which also stars Ab Fab’s Jane Horrocks and Piper’s fellow Doctor Who alum David Tennant—premieres next year.

in New York and Los Angeles on Sept. 16. (The film is currently available on-demand as well.) It’s a fascinating portrait, not just of the battling boozehounds next door but also of pre-Internet culture, when something going “viral” was a process that took months and years, the products of cassette tape or copy paper. Given how today’s YouTube sensation becomes tomorrow’s has-been, it’s a strangely retro reminder of the extremely recent past.

Are you ready for The Young Carrie Bradshaw Chronicles?

Blake Lively : Warner Bros. Pictures. From this summer’s X-Men: First Class to the upcoming The Amazing Spider-Man, youthful reboots are all the rage—but prequels aren’t just for superheroes anymore. And while first there were just rumblings, there are now more definite plans for HBO’s developing series (that would probably air elsewhere, most likely the CW) focusing on younger versions of the Sex and the City quartet. Imagine something along the lines of Smallville, only with Carrie, Miranda, Charlotte and Samantha instead of Clark Kent. With two recent “Teen Carrie” books by Candace Bushnell, The Carrie Diaries and Summer in the City, freshly ready for adaptation, this could all get moving quickly. Early casting news buzzing about Blake Lively has now grown to include talk of Emma Roberts. Who knows, maybe Selena Gomez is looking to change her image; if so, then there’s your Charlotte. And if the show wanted to incorporate a genuine element of the surreal into the proceedings, they could just let Kim Cattrall keep playing Samantha. OK, maybe Samantha’s slutty grandmother.

Billie Piper...her character is described as a schoolteacher who... discovers herself being attracted to one of her female students.

Sundance hit Shut Up Little Man! Heads for Theaters

Two Midwestern punk rock dudes moved to San Francisco in the late ’80s, only to be kept awake at night by the loud and boisterous arguments of their drunken neighbors, one gay, one straight and both very familiar with alcohol. The fascinated new tenants tape-recorded the fights, which later led to zines and duplicated cassettes and staged readings that became an underground cultural phenomenon. That’s the story of Shut Up Little Man!, the darkly hilarious (and also remarkably sad) documentary that premiered at Sundance this year, and now it’s heading to theaters

Dirty Dancing’s new partner: Maria Maggenti

For now, let’s put aside the fact that a Dirty Dancing remake is even happening at all. If you’re upset about it you can just refuse to see it. It’s a perfect response to Hollywood’s hollow remake mindset. But curious queer audiences will find this behind-the-camera news of interest: the reboot’s script will come from bisexual writer-director Maria Maggenti.

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the fun guide


Cocktail Chatter by Ed Sikov Oooo –La-La: A Proper Gimlet

The vision that greeted me as I walked into the beach house was Felliniesque. Craig wasn’t expecting an audience for the indescribable show he was putting on—for himself, he assumed— with his back turned away from the front door. Wrapped in a boldly floral sari-toga get-up (which turned out to be a queensized sheet) draped and folded carefully but with odd ripples here and there and not nearly enough material around his left butt cheek, he was peeling potatoes into the sink while swinging his immense hips around as though he was one of the heftier hula girls at some low-grade Honolulu luau. And he was singing at the top of his lungs: “I’m GaGa! You’re ca-ca! Oooo-la-la! Ha-va-na! Ra-na-na! Vay nishma Ha ha ha!” I couldn’t suppress a loud bark of a laugh, which caused Craig to scream in startled terror. “You’re brilliant, you know that?” I said, giggling. “You could have killed me,” Craig heaved, clutching his chest and breath-

ing hard. “Ohmygod (gasp) I had (gasp) no idea (heave) you were there. Now I know what—ohmygod (gasp)—‘scared to death’ means.” He leaned back against the counter and wiped his forehead with the back of his hand. The sari-toga-sheet fell to his ankles. I t wa s w i t h surprise and fascination that I noticed what an immense penis Craig has. I’d seen it before, of course; an outdoor s h o we r o u t t h e kitchen window harbors no secrets. But somehow this new up-close-andpersonal view was a shock. Unlike many chubby men, whose meat disappears in folds of fat, Craig was remarkably well hung in all senses of the expression. His pelvis was set in such a way that his dick thrust forward naturally, and it was itself surprisingly long and thick. I thought to myself, “That Kyle business makes a lot more sense.” “Child,” Craig drawled, “have you never seen one before?” I felt myself blush. “Sorry, it was just that I…I…” “I am rather proud of it,” he said,

pulling his sheet around his waist and slinging the excess over his forearm. “Kyle certainly appreciated…” He suddenly stopped talking, and his whole demeanor changed—his shoulders slumped, and a moment later he was in tears. “Let’s talk, old friend,” I said, wrapping my arms around him. He nestled his wet face in the crook of my neck, and we stood there motionless for at least a minute before he was ready to move apart. We spent the rest of the afternoon talking, just the two of us—about Kyle, their relationship, Craig’s regrets, Kyle’s callowness, my crazed jealousy…We started off with iced tea, but around 4:00 we decided that it was cocktail hour. Inspired by the message and recipe I recently received from “Joey from Denver,” I made us gimlets, but proper ones: Rose’s sweetened lime juice and Beefeater gin in the correct proportions, and no funky brown ice. We both knew that this was not the time to get plastered. It was, instead, a time for us to reconnect over leisurely drinks as the best friends we’d been for so many years. It was profoundly comforting—so comforting that we forget about making dinner entirely. So we all went out for pizza.

The vision that greeted me as I walked into the beach house was Felliniesque. Craig wasn’t expecting an audience for the indescribable show he was putting on...

gesture, which caused me to laugh so abruptly that I choked on a bit of frisee and briefly wondered if Ramona could be trusted to actually perform the Heimlich maneuver rather than just take my gagging literally—as a gag. The joke was pure Ramona. I’ve adored her for 35 years. “So Mo,” I said. “What am I going to do about Dan?” “Dan who?” It’s not that she didn’t like my partner. She was just wildly jealous of him. If I hadn’t come out during our senior year in college, I’d have married Ramona. She was stunned and hurt by my big revelation, which I accomplished involuntarily when Mo caught me getting blown by an all-but-blind physics major. After the operatic and very public first week (the spectators being the entire student body of Haverford College, the opera reminiscent of Lucia di Lammermoor), she recovered quickly. Her rampant sex drive saw to that. She didn’t exactly set out to plow her way through the soccer team, but she didn’t leave many guys out in the cold. Her mother hasn’t spoken to me since. “Come on, Mo,” I said. “This isn’t funny.” New York State had just legalized same-sex marriage when Dan stopped speaking to me over my fling with Jack Fogg. The timing wasn’t ironic. It felt more like inescapable fate—dark and portentous, kind of like Oedipus but without me screwing my mother and gouging my eyes out. “” She smirked at her own wit. I giggled. “Please?” I begged. “OK,” she said through a mouthful of green beans. “Here’s whatcha do. One night when he’s at home working into the wee hours, get out of bed, go to the secret place where you’ve hidden a dozen red roses—long stem; you’ll look bad if you cut corners—and surprise him. Be naked. It’s both sexy and abject, both of which you are.” She forked another bunch of beans and delivered them to her still-chewing mouth. “Mmm, ‘n get down on one knee. Act chivalrous.” So I did. I hid the roses in a vase in the closet where I keep my toolbox; I’d bet his life he’d never go in there. Naked, I offered my apology, roses and love to my life partner, and he accepted it. I also brought out a bottle of Pernod and two glasses. Then we…well, it’s actually too personal to write about, even for me.

New York State had just legalized samesex marriage when Dan stopped speaking to me over my fling with Jack Fogg. The timing wasn’t ironic.

A Proper Gimlet (pronounced like gimp, not gym)

• 4 tbsp. Beefeater gin • 1 tbsp. Rose’s lime juice Gimlets offer a choice: either pour both ingredients over ice in a old fashioned-size glass and stir, or pour them into an ice-filled cocktail shaker, shake and strain into chilled martini glasses.

Pernod and Roses

“I went out with Jennifer and the gals last night,” Ramona said just before she dug into her salad Niceoise. A little bistro had opened on West 18th Street—Le Quai à Nice. All very lovely and evocative, until Ramona made a face after tasting the tuna. She shrugged and took another bite. “We went to that awful ‘Kittens’ place in Soho on Saturday. Blecchhh! Lily wanted to go. Never again. Anyway, for the first time in like forever I got really wasted. Margaritas.” She leaned toward me confidentially. “So I did something I never did before: I took the bus home!” “So?” I said. “Well, I made it home safely, which was surprising, since I never drove a bus before.” She spread out her arms in a “ta-da!”

Pernod, the legendary anise-flavored aperitif

• Mixed with a little water and served in what are called longdrink glasses—tall liqueur glasses that flare out beautifully at the top. I bought ours on eBay. I remember the items’ description vividly: “Rare and Superb Pernod Glasses.” I got two for $1.98 each plus shipping.

the fun guide


ACCESSline’s STATEWIDE Recurring Events List

The following list is provided by—and corrected by—ACCESSline readers like you. If you would like to add an event, or if you notice a mistake in this list, please email editor@

Interest Group Abbreviations: L: Lesbian G: Gay +: HIV-related D: Drag W: General Women’s Interest

Sunday Every Sunday, GLBT AA, 5-6 PM, at First Baptist Church at 500 N. Clinton St., Iowa City. For more info about Intergroup and Alcoholics Anonymous call the 24-Hour Answering Service at 319-338-9111 or visit the AA-IC website: [ L G B T M W A ] Every Sunday, L WORD LIVES: L NIGHT, 7PM, at the Firewater Saloon, 347 South Gilbert St., Iowa City, 319-321-5895. The night will start with Season 1, Episode 1 of the L Word... because a good thing should never die. FoLLowing the L Word wiLL be a Drag King show at 9:30 p.m. No cover. Tel, 319-321-5895. [ L B TWD] Every Sunday, THE QUIRE: EASTERN IOWA’S GLBT CHORUS REHEARSALS, 6-8:30 PM, at Zion Lutheran Church, 310 N. Johnson St., Iowa City. Membership is open to all GLBT folks, as well as allies who support the community. There are no auditions; you only need to be willing to attend rehearsals regularly and learn your music. The Quire prepares two full concerts each year in the winter and spring, and occasionally performs shorter programs at events in the Iowa City/Cedar Rapids area. The Quire is a member of Gay and Lesbian Association of Choruses (GALA), and has developed a reputation for excellence and variety in its concert programs. For more info, visit http:// [ L G B T M W A ] Every Sunday, QUEER GUERRILLA BRUNCH, Locations around Iowa City to be announced each week. LGBTQIs & Allies gather for Sunday brunch to celebrate community and create visibility. Sign up for future brunches on Facebook at php?gid=120517046371 [ L G B T M W A ] Every Sunday, RAINBOW AND ALLIED YOUTH, 8:00pm-11:00pm, The Center, 1300 Locust, Des Moines, IA 50309. Social group for Queer youth 25 years and under [ L G B T ] Every Sunday, OMAHA FRONTRUNNERS/ WALLKERS, 10 AM. For more information call 402-804-8720. [ L G B T M W A ] Second Sunday, GAY MEN’S MEDITATION GROUP, 2 pm, Iowa City/Corridor Area, 319-354-3285 for more information. [ G B TM] Second Sunday, LGBT MOVIE NIGHT, 2 p.m., Johnson County Senior Center, 28 S. Linn St., room 202 , Iowa City, IA 52240. A series of narrative and documentary movies focusing on lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender issues with informal discussions afterward. An encore screening and discussion of each movie will be offered on the following evenings to accommodate more participants. The selections will share with the audience some of the traumas and successes experienced by the LGBT community throughout history, as well as center around gay love stories and the universal search for meaningful relationships. For more information, or to request a favorite title, contact the series organizer, Elsie Gauley Vega, at 319-337-4487 or jgvega@hotmail. com. [ L G B T ]


1st 2nd Monday of the Month, IOWA PFLAG NORTH IOWA CHAPTER MEETING, 7 PM, at First Presbyterian Church, 100 S. Pierce St., Mason City. Meetings are held the First and Second Monday (alternating) of the month. For more info, call 641-583-2848. [ L GBTMWAK] 1st Monday of the Month, IOWA PFLAG QUAD CITIES CHAPTER MEETING, 6:30 PM, at

Hear Me Out by Chris Azzopardi David Guetta, Nothing But the Beat

B: Bisexual T: Transgender A: General Interest K: Kids and Family M: General Men’s Interest

Eldridge United Methodist Church, 604 S. 2nd St., Eldridge. For more info, call 563-285-4173. [LGBTMWAK] 4th Monday of the Month, IOWA PFLAG WAUKON/NORTHEAST CHAPTER MEETING, 7 PM, First Lutheran Church, 604 West Broadway Street , Decorah, IA 52101. in the Fellowship Hall at First Lutheran Church, Decorah. 604 West Broadway Street. (563) 382-2638 [ LGBTMWA] Every Monday, DES MOINES GAY MEN’S CHORUS REHEARSALS, 7pm-9:30pm, Plymouth Congregational Church, 4126 Ingersoll Avenue, Des Moines, IA . For more information about singing with the Chorus, contact Rebecca Gruber at 515-865-9557. The Des Moines Gay Men’s Chorus does not discriminate on the basis of sexual orientation. [ G M A ] Every Monday Wednesday Thursday Saturday, GLBT ONLY AA MEETINGS IN DES MOINES, 6 PM - SAT 5 PM, at 945 19th St. (east side of building, south door). [ L G B T MWA] Monday, DIVERSITY CHORUS REHEARSALS, 7:00 - 8:30 p.m., Westminster Presbyterian Church, 4114 Allison Ave., Des Moines, IA 50310. Des Moines Diversity Chorus welcomes new singers, begins 02/07/2011. No audition required. Singing with meaning since 1997! Call Julie Murphy at 515-255-3576 for more information. No cost to members. Rehearsals continue on Monday evenings through 5/2/11. [LGBTMWAD]


1st Tuesday of Every Month, OUT, 6:307:30 PM, Monarch Therapy Services, Waterloo Office 3356 Kimball Ave Ste. 5, Free Support Group for the LGBTQ Community in the Cedar Valley! [L G B T D A W M ] 2nd Tuesday of the Month, IOWA PFLAG AMES CHAPTER MEETING, 7 PM, Youth and Shelter Services Offices, 420 Kellogg Ave., 1st Floor, Ames, IA 50010. Meets in the Paul Room of Youth and Shelter Services at 420 Kellogg Avenue, Ames. For more info, call 515-2913607. [ L G B T M W A K ] 2nd Tuesday of the Month, CEDAR RAPIDS UNITY BOARD MEETING, 6:30-8 PM, Cedar Rapids, IA . at 6300 Rockwell Dr, Cedar Rapids. Meetings are open to the general public. For more info, call 319-366-2055 or visit: http:// [ L G B T M W A ] 2nd Tuesday of the Month, SPIRITUAL SEEKERS, 7-8:30 PM, Iowa City, IA . at Trinity Episcopal Church, 320 E. College St, Iowa City. Spiritual Seekers is a group for people of all faiths, or of little faith, who wish to make deeper connections between their sexual identities and the spiritual dimension in their lives. Meetings include discussion of specialized topics, telling of pieces of our faith journeys, and occasional prayer and meditation. (On the 4th Tuesday of each month, the group gathers at a local restaurant for food and fellowship.) For more info, contact Tom Stevenson: tbstevenson@mchsi. com or 319.354.1784. [ L G B T M W A ] Every Tuesday, OUT (OUR UNITED TRUTH): A GLBT SUPPORT GROUP, 7-8:30 PM, Peoples Church Unitarian Universalist, 600 3rd Avenue Southeast, Cedar Rapids, IA 52401. For more info, call 563-359-0816. [ L GBTMWA] Every Tuesday, ACE INCLUSIVE BALLROOM, 7-8:30 PM, Old Brick, 26 East Market Street, Iowa City, IA 52245. All skill levels are welcome. American social dance, Latin, a mix

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David Guetta has a way of bringing out the best in his collaborators, as he did with Kelly Rowland’s “When Love Takes Over” more than two years ago. With a new lineup that includes everyone from Nicki Minaj to Timbaland and newcomer Jessie J, the house music-maker du jour is at it again. Minaj lays down a frenetic rap on Flo Rida’s first single, “Where Them Girls At,” and then owns “Turn Me On,” a song she, you know, “sings” that should earn her even more gay club play. Tracks featuring (“Nothing Really Matters”) and Jennifer Hudson (“Night of Your Life”) are all right, though not exactly the most innovative among the other club cuts, but can’t come close to touching the one-two punch of Sia and Jessie J. “Titanium” is a big track, catapulting like it’s about to break through the sky, and Sia takes it even higher. Jessie J’s “Repeat,” another empowering song with soul and an irresistible hook, is better than any track off the Brit’s recently released debut. Both songs should, in a perfect world, give both artists more career momentum—thanks to Guetta, whose fifth album isn’t just a more diversified affair that pulls in all sorts of artists; it takes many of them where you’ve never heard them go before. Grade: B

Natalia Kills, Perfectionist

If Natalia Kills were a true perfectionist, as the title of this album claims, there’d be no room to complain about the 10 songs on her debut. But there’s plenty to pick at, including the half-as-good Gaga rips and seriously lame lyrics that don’t go deeper than a scratch. Not only does the British singer coin her own penis euphemism (“disco stick” is so three years ago; it’s “love grenade” now),

there’s also a that-man-is-a-monster song called “Zombie.” It’s easy to see who she’s been listening to lately, which makes this shameless copycat problematic: She’s never as good as Gaga, which is a comparison that wouldn’t be fair had Kills not brought it on herself. So we have “Wonderland,” definitely passable (though it’s just a “Bad Romance” wannabe), and songs that are so abysmally written they wouldn’t even make it on a Ke$ha album (among them: “Superficial” and “Acid Annie,” an awkward tale of getting her boyfriend back). She even lacks innovation on the ballads, with “Broke” coming from the “Halo”/“Already Gone” family. And “If I Was God” isn’t bad, but Nelly Furtado’s done it better. Think of the 24-year-old as a breakup rebound: She’s a good time, but you’ll be thinking of someone else the whole time. Grade: C-

Also Out

Active Child, You Are All I See Active Child, a pseudonym for laptop musician Pat Grossi, might as well be the love child of Bon Iver and Enya. Layers of instruments mount into sonic bliss as he draws in everything from synth beds and harpsichord to thrashing drum machines and, of course, his own voice—a pretty, always emotive link between the variance of songs. Most of them sound like they were threaded in his dreams, with “See Thru Eyes” taking on some kind of sacred life and another fave, “Hanging On,” sounding like he’s singing with himself, alternating between registers with a cool duality. It’s music that isn’t meant to be accessible or understood. In fact, you don’t even really hear it—you feel it. Amos Lee, Live from Soho EP Amos Lee’s voice captures an era in music that’s dying a slow death—a time when artists could really sing. He croons with a whiskey-washed rawness that maintains itself even in a live setting, as he does on this eight-song EP. Of those tunes, four are from his most recent album (most worth checking out: “El Camino” and “Windows are Rolled Down”), two off older albums (“Arms of a Woman” and the lovely “Night Train”) and a couple covers, including Neil Young’s “Are You Ready for the Country?” and Ween’s mysteriously somber “Buenos Tardes Amigo.” Each one’s a gem.

Mason Jennings, Minnesota The dark turn Mason Jennings took on his last album, the gritty “Blood of Man,” isn’t so much a part of his latest. A dedication to his home turf, the singer-songwriter— inspired by starting his own family—loses the lo-fi vibe and goes back to earlier albums, but now with more piano. It runs through the simple “Bitter Heart” like a track from the closing of some sweet scene in an indie film. It’s used to jauntier effect on almostpop “Raindrops On…” and as an intro to “Clutch,” one of the disc’s many highlights. Even when Jennings goes for something way leftfield, like on the Cuban-cut “Well of Love,” his risks are ones worth taking… and hearing.

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Cynthia Nixon and Kim Cattrall head for Broadway

Kim Cattrall : Guy Ferrandis/Summit Entertainment From man-eating Samantha on Sex and the City to a revival of Private Lives, that’s what Kim Cattrall will be doing over Thanksgiving when she hits Broadway in that Noel Coward comedy (infamous for its line: “Certain women should be struck regularly like gongs”). It’s set to begin previews on Nov. 6 for a Nov. 17 opening at the Music Box Theater. And she’s not the only SatC alum working for it in front of a live audience. Cynthia Nixon (who’s always doing a play, it seems) will star in the Broadway revival of the humorousyet-harrowing 1998 cancer drama Wit. That one opens in previews Jan. 5, 2012 for a Jan. 26 open at the Samuel J. Friedman. A couple of questions, though: Will the U.K.-born Cattrall do another British accent like in Roman Polanski’s film The

the fun guide Ghost Writer? And more exciting to think about, will Nixon shave her head for her own role like Kathleen Chalfant did in its original run? You know it would be cool if she did.

Diana Vreeland documentary first sale at Toronto

She’s never been a household name, but in the fashion world Diana Vreeland was a legend. And her trademark individualistic style and bigger-than-big personality has made the grande dame of all Vogue editors an enduring subject of affectionate fascination with fashion fans, even more so than The Devil Wears Prada inspiration Anna Wintour. So it’s appropriate that a new documentary about Mrs. Vreeland, Diana Vreeland: The Eye Has To Travel, was the first film bought at The Toronto International Film Festival for American distribution. Samuel Goldwyn will put out the movie theatrically in about 20 major and medium-sized markets before a wider DVD release. Advice to anyone who hits the arthouse theater in their town on opening weekend: dress up for it or the lady’s ghost will enact some kind of style vengeance you don’t want to deal with.

Allen Gregory: Are you ready for the gay Bart Simpson?

Considering that even Fox’s newest animated sitcoms are all rolling on toward

Allen Gregory an animated series from creator Jonah extremely precocious child being raised by two gay dads. He’s the kind of worldly sort who shows up at his new school with sushi in a Louis Vuitton lunch box. the 10th-season mark and The Simpsons will most likely soon overtake Gunsmoke as the longest-running primetime show ever, it’s time for some fresh blood. Enter Allen Gregory, an animated series from creator Jonah Hill (Superbad). A snobby (and presumably heterosexual, considering the crush he displays on his school’s female principal) 7-year-old, Allen Gregory is an extremely precocious child being raised by two gay dads. He’s the kind of worldly sort who shows up at his new school with sushi in a Louis Vuitton lunch box and looks down his nose at everyone, including his teachers. Voiced by Hill with a condescending tone and biting wit, it’s the kind of show sure to win over Fox’s devoted animationblock fans and drive pop culture’s anti-gay faction over the edge. Good. It debuts Oct. 30. Fire up those DVRs. Romeo San Vicente thinks sushi is fine but would prefer a DoubleDouble from In-N-Out Burger. He can be reached care of this publication or at DeepInsideHollywood@qsyndicate. com.

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MINOR DETAILS intellectualism in the right-wing debate. Professors, scientists, and other thinkers are vilified because they’re not right-wing partisan enough. Their facts appear, well, liberal. Does this mean we should give up logical argument and sighting of the facts? Of course not. Those will both move those people who still listen to such things. But it means that while we use them, we cannot rely on them alone. We must appeal to basic values that define a more liberal agenda because values appeal to the emotions that are often the censors of logic. President Obama is at his best when he speaks out of his values. But, the proof that these really are someone’s values is in the follow-up. Do we believe them enough to stand up for them? Do we lead so that they are obviously ours? Do we propose to do what we do out of these values? Do we give them a good run for their money? Or do we compromise them before a good fight for personal or political gain if we feel we might lose? Do we show that we really embody them by standing up for them even at our own expense? Are we willing even to lose temporarily because they are that important? Robert N. Minor, Ph.D., Professor Emeritus of Religious Studies at the University of Kansas, is author of When Religion Is an Addiction; Scared Straight: Why It’s So Hard to Accept Gay People and Why It’s So Hard to Be Human and Gay & Healthy in a Sick Society. Contact him at


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Wired That Way: LGBT on the go by Rachel Eliason Mobile Apps for the Community

search brings back dozens of results. Here are my top picks for LGBT apps for your phone. (Note: I own a Motorola Droid, and I’ve installed and tested the majority of the apps in this article on my droid. Most of these apps are available on both platforms. They should run the same on both platforms but I cannot guarantee that every app will be available or run the same on an iPhone.)

Even back in the early eighties, when cell phones were the size of bricks, they were status symbols. Phones have come a long way in that time, in both size and function. The latest generation of smart phones—the iPhone and the android—are not just status symbols. They are powerful electronic devices capable of surfing the web, watching videos and checking email. They are also extremely popular. According to TechCrunch’s John Biggs The Advocate: the Advocate has been smart phone sales are predicted to top 420 one of the LGBT community’s primary million by the end of the year and take 28 sources for information since the print percent of the total phone market. version first came out in 1967. The One of the key selling points to the Advocate has gone through many changes smart phone is that they can be custom- over the years and has done a great job ized in so many ways. of keeping up with the The fastest, easiest There are plenty of special times. In addition to way to customize interest apps, ranging from the print magazine they your smart phone a great website growlr for “bears” to apps have is through small and one of the slickest programs known as with names like flirtalicious news apps I have seen. “apps” (short for and fem/dom. It’s free to download, “applications”). There available for iPhone, are literally thousands of different apps iPad or android and it’s easy to navigate. available. Apps allow your phone to do Definitely a must-have app for my smartmany things, ranging from silly to useful. phone. There are games, email tools, camera tools, The Edge: The Edge is a Boston search engines, and news sources. There based network of LGBT news sources. are even a number of apps made just for The Edge app contains some great news LGBT folks. articles. It’s not as slick as the Advocate, Most app developers work on the two but it’s free and very easy to navigate. major platforms, the iPhone app store It’s another must-have app for anyone and the android app market. One of the wanting to keep up with what’s going on reasons that RIM (makers of the black- in our community. berry) have fallen so fast in the market While it’s not specifically LGBT, Huffis not that it’s software is lacking, but its ington Post is certainly a gay friendly/ development community is weak. With no left leaning news site with a lot of good one willing to build apps for that platform, information. They also have a great app they can’t provide the services that the to browse their publication through your big two can. phone. Developers are making new apps There are three interesting sounding every day. About six months ago I had the but fairly disappointing news apps for idea of writing a column about the best Transgender individuals. The Trangender LGBT friendly apps. When I searched the Rights app, Transgender News app, and Android Market there really wasn’t much SRS Surgery Information app are simple for the LGBT community. Now the same news aggregators. An aggregator is a

News Apps

program that searches the web looking for certain keywords or tags, and then adding them to a list—which means these apps are little more than a collection of links to other sites. The first two apps seem to link to any news article that used the word transgender in its tag, whether they are really specific to the trans community or not, and the SRS app didn’t have a single link the last time I checked. Its developer has hundreds of similar apps for keywords ranging from alcoholism to Yorkshire Terriers.

Social Media Apps

Of course you have your standard social media sites, and if you are like me, putting them on your smart phone was one of the first things you did. You’ve got your Facebook app, your Google + app, your Twitter, and possibly even your MySpace app (if you still use MySpace). Are there social media sites just for LGBT smart phone users? Of course. Grindr: if you are a gay man and a smart phone user, grindr is probably your must-have app. It’s a dating site built around your location. (Is there another man wanting to hook up within a two mile radius? You’ve always wondered, now you can know.) Post pictures, send messages, and browse men by category or location. As a special bonus you just might be the next person to out some closeted Republican. Fingr: Of course somebody had to come up with a dating site for lesbians as well, and of course they had to call it Fingr. Post pictures, send messages, browse, you get the idea. The only significant difference is that so far there hasn’t been any major scandals involving closeted Republican women, but you never know, maybe there’s a racy picture of Michele Bachmann out there somewhere. (I am not implying there is; please don’t sue me Mrs. Bachmann.) Gay/Lesbian dating sites are popping up all over the place. There are plenty of special interest apps, ranging from growlr for “bears” to apps with names like flirtalicious and fem/dom. Yeah, we’ve come a long way, baby.

Other Apps

If you are on Verizon or AT&T and have one of their premium movie streaming plans you can get Logo content. Logo is the only all LGBT cable station in operation. Shows include RuPaul’s Drag Race, 1 Girl, 5 gays and the A-list. On Verizon, packages start as low as an extra ten dollars a month and include a wide variety of stations and content in addition to Logo. Wallpaper: One of the fastest and most obvious ways to customize your phone is to change the background picture or wall paper. If you want to show your pride, you’re in luck. A search for “gay wallpaper” brings back more than a dozen apps. There are several gay pride wallpaper apps with about a dozen images on each. You can also get Glee wallpaper, Lady Gaga wallpaper, Kate “I kissed a girl” Perry wallpaper or even “Sexy Gay Boxers” wallpaper.

Silly Apps

Dildroid App “Pope supports Gay Marriage after meeting Charming Connecticut Couple”. Is it real? It’s better; It’s the Onion. One of the best humor publications on the web, the Onion has been spoofing the news, and the LGBT community in particular, for many years. From the small town that held a pride parade on behalf of its one gay resident to the thirteen-year-old gay boy who feared he might be a conservative Christian (complete with mom wailing in the background, “I just want my normal gay son back”) the Onion loves to spoof our society’s fear of the LGBT community. Now you can take it on the go, with a custom app that allows you to access a rotating collection of short videos. No list of apps would be complete without mentioning the silliest must-have app for the android: the Dildroid. As the site warns, the most important requirement is a good sense of humor. You can drag the droid’s iconic green robot up and down and make your phone vibrate in sync. If your phone’s battery power is too low for the app to run properly you will get a hysterical image of a flaccid droid. It won’t replace your BOB (Battery Operated Boyfriend) but it will keep you in stitches. Just be careful and remember the developer’s other warning: “internal use may void phones warranty.”

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The Gay Wedding Planner: Remembering Jeff Jacox by Beau Fodor As I sit in my office at the New LGBTQI Center, temporarily at 1300 Locust Street, in downtown Des Moines, my eyes are drawn to a matted and framed copy of an April 30th, 2009 DSM Register article, about my launching a business called “Gay Weddings with PANACHE”. The photos featured are of my best friend Jeff Jacox’s home and main dining room, where we hosted dozens of truly fabulous parties, and launched my reality television career. Jeff passed away this September 17th at dawn, after surviving AIDS for 23 years. We met while I was then Vice-President Al Gore’s personal steward, during a statewide bus tour in 1999. Jeff took me “under his wing”  that  trip and my life changed forever. He also is partly responsible for everything I have accomplished these past 3 years of Gay Marriage in our great state. By believing in me from the very start, unconditionally , he helped put together our states’ first (and only so-far) Gay Weddings Expo by writing the check for it. He believed in me when I didn’t believe in myself. And that, my friends, DEFINES friendship. This months’ column is dedicated to Jeff Jacox, and our friendship.  And since I’m still alittle “out-of-sorts” with my loss, and helping plan a FABULOUS catered memorial with all of his friends, well, a letter I recieved from a young Groom who was also married this September 17th, seems fitting to share with you. And next month, look forward to a column about upcoming fairytale nuptials in Burlington, Iowa. What a fabulous Gay community, with fabulous wedding and reception venues from beanfields to ballrooms (and the true hospitality from the

Arrowhead Lodge). Hi. My name is Jake Auliff and I recently married my partner of eight and a half years, David Lewis. Let me start off by saying that I am an engineer by profession, which means that I am a detail-oriented person, which ultimately means that I am basically a control freak. So without saying I went into this adventure with high expectations. David and I both knew Beau socially and had the opportunity to witness his event planning in action, so we knew that he was a very competent and able planning professional. We also wanted to be guests at our own wedding, so this meant hiring Beau to be our planner. That didn’t stop me from arriving at our first meeting with laptop and Excel spreadsheet in hand! I thought that I had

Photos :

already planned out every detail, down to the number of glasses of wine or beer, or cheese balls each person would be allowed (crazy, I know). I got the distinct feeling that this wasn’t how Beau rolled, but he was very flexible, always available to offer advice, and to offer suggestions that tweaked our event for the better. He knew the best invitation company to work with (and I received innumerable compliments on them), he had contacts in the catering business and knew which buttons to push to get exactly what we wanted. For the rehearsal dinner he pulled some magical strings and had the restaurant seat us in the best spot and prepared an amazing custom table setting. And even though David and I knew exactly the venue we wanted for our wedding to take place, Beau networked with the owners and operators to allow us to light off 150 three foot high Chinese floating lanterns, which truly made our event spectacular and fostered a sense of interaction and togetherness among our wedding guests. I overheard several guests during the lantern lighting say “This is going to put this place on the map.” That is quite a compliment for a relatively small gay wedding. All this wouldn’t have been possible without Beau’s assistance. Beau worked on site for several days before, and after, preparing for our event and left no detail unexamined. I can’t count the number of friends and family and neighbors who said afterwards that it was far and away the best wedding they had ever attended. Throughout the wedding planning process

Beau Fodor is an Iowa wedding planner who focuses specifically on weddings for the LGBT community. He is working with Pilgrim Films on a new Iowabased reality show. Beau can be reached through or I gave Beau all kinds of grief and frustration by my independent initiatives, and he will surely admit as much! But by keeping the lines of communication open always, and making sure to keep the big picture in mind, we three together have stayed friends and ended up with an event that was all that David & I had dreamed about and saved for, for years.


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Partying Hard: Mr. Olympia 2011 by Joshua Dagon

This past weekend I attended the 2011 Mr. Olympia Contest and Expo at the Las Vegas Convention Center where, being a mere five-foot-nine and only one hundred and eighty pounds, I must have—in proportion to the other expo attendees—looked like a hobbit with a camera. I was actually very excited by this event. A friend went with me and we both descended upon the convention center with the full expectation of filling bags and bags with free samples of fitness products. After thoroughly sweeping each vendor’s booth, feeling very much like children collecting candy at a Halloween party where the theme was Too Many Muscles! Enough With the Muscles Already!, we left with our arms loaded with hundreds of performance-enhancing compounds—the legal kind. We had protein bars and antioxidant drinks and tissue oxygenators and whey cookies and amino acid jelly beans and vaso-muscular volumizationalazines [or something like that], all of which do pretty much nothing and taste just like construction putty. Whoo hoo! Besides the couple of hundred vendors, there were also several competitions at the event, of which Mr. Olympia was just one. The FLEX Pound4Pound Fan Challenge was the first one that we saw. It was an opportunity for bodybuilding fans to—for some sort of prize, I assume— attempt to lift their own weight on the flat bench press. You might think that this sounds like a really stupid activity, which is interesting, because it looked like one, too. You see, I learned at the expo that the average body building fan weighs a little more than a Zamboni machine. So, there was quite a bit of laughter, quite a few internal hemorrhages, and a crew of professional FLEX athletes shaking their heads in brazen disgust while some teenage schmoe in a TapOut t-shirt turned lollypop purple beneath the weight bar as he slowly pushed his internal organs out through his belly button. Another contest we saw was a professional bodybuilding competition where the physiques were actually reasonably proportioned; pectorals, biceps, and triceps were masculine and shapely without bulging into distorted proportions; calves, thighs, and gluts were attractive, manly, and pronounced without swelling into monstrous formations. These were bodies that I would very much like to have myself, except for the fact that none of the contestants had penises. The International Female Body Building Pro League Judging was inspirational to watch. I simply wondered where all of those women found Y chromosomes and how exactly they were able to install them. I observed that, at some point, the process involved relinquishing their boobies. For the MHP’s Olympia Strongman Challenge I was able to take a lot of photographs due to finding a place on the press

Novelist Joshua Dagon is the author of Into the Mouth of the Wolf, The Fallen, and Demon Tears. For more information, please go to To contact Mr. Dagon, please e-mail him at

platform. Well… it wasn’t the “main” press platform, in that I was the only member of the press on it, since the principle platform was filled from corner to corner with really scary journalist-type photographers who I’m certain had Tasers. No, I found another platform, likely a section that was left over and set out of the way. Even so, at least I was above the crowd and positioned like a real professional. I just wish I hadn’t been behind the competitors where the only interesting angle came when the athletes bent over to pick up the weights. After the Strongman Challenge, we walked around the convention some more and I purchased a cup of cola costing $3.95. There was something apropos, however, about the augmented price of my soda. I just can’t put my finger on it. It’s almost as though its value had been enhanced somehow in an unnatural way, perhaps by some kind of illegal, anabolic process. Hm. Bears pondering, that. Truly, the Mr. Olympia event was steeped with the most impressive physiques in the world. It was the Best of the Best. And then there were the bigger contestants who appeared as though they had eaten the Best of the Best. The principal athletes of the Mr. Olympia competition were men of staggering proportions. The detail and girth of the muscles these men bore was stunning to the point of rendering one comatose. Let me just say that, when you see a man walking toward you who has shoulders as wide as you are tall, you should do everything you can to get out of his way. That is not the time to freeze like a doe on a highway. The probability was that, had I done so, the athlete would not have even noticed me. He would have walked

It was the Best of the Best. And then there were the bigger contestants who appeared as though they had eaten the Best of the Best.

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Katy B, On a Mission

the fun guide pitiful pool of men during “Easy Please Me,” a devilish rant that’s incredibly addictive. “These days I can’t find a man to please me,” sasses the singer, who adopts the Lily Allen brand of mouth-offs. She does it again on the dubstep groove “Go Away,” but this time drops into some R&B coolness on the chorus. “Broken Record” lurches into a sweetly sung rave, and “Hard to Get” wraps the set—strangely pairing cricket chirps and lounge-y keyboards for a killer chiller. Even the what-could-be-canned thank yous at the end of the track sound like nothing you’ve heard before. Grade: A-

Pistol Annies, Hell on Heels They’re everywhere—British songbirds trying to take over the world with their voices. But Katy B, who’s already made major headway in her native country for her unique, mainstream-friendly blend of dubstep, house and soul, is a name that’s destined to catch on. The 22-year-old’s debut is one of the best in recent years, a near-perfect spin that feels loose, gritty, mature and free from the strategic control of a record label (even though she’s got major-label backing under Sony)—the antithesis of Jessie J’s first effort, released just a few months ago. “Power On Me,” an old-school throwback to the ’80s, sets the stage for a familiar sound that the Londonbased artist makes all her own, moving into the thumping chainsaw-ripping single “Katy On a Mission,” breezing through the jazzy “Movement” and nagging on the

that’s reminiscent of what Dolly Parton did with Emmylou Harris and Linda Ronstadt for the legendary Trio album. But that was 1987. So on their laid-back, traditionalsounding venture, Pistol Annies play with a modern sensibility that allows them to riff on girls-behaving-badly with “Takin’ Pills” and, at their campiest, greedy relatives fighting over their dead mother’s belongings on “Family Feud.” It’s this openness to busting genre limits that makes their debut such a delight, with Lambert getting feisty mad at her ex on “Trailer for Rent” and then all starry-eyed over “Boys from the South.” “Lemon Drop” offers an adorably witty slant to an it-gets-better song, while “Beige” is the group at their most affecting, as they sing about a shotgun wedding. There are only 10 ditties—all of them simple, nottoo-produced pieces—that stretch over a skimpy 30 minutes. But that’s certainly enough time for them to give us some hell, and some heaven. Grade: B+

bitch about. There’s the way-too-wordy lead single “I Want Somebody (Bitch About)” and an overload of schmaltzy songs (blame Diane Warren). Just consider this another lesson learned.

Kristin Chenoweth, Some Lessons Learned Just because Kristin Chenoweth is babycute doesn’t mean she can get away with anything. And her crossover into country music, from Broadway and Christmas to nearly everything else, is the kind of nearmiss that you wish wasn’t. She’s obviously a talented singer, and she nails a reading of Dolly Parton’s “Change” (also great is her ode to the icon, “What Would Dolly Do?”) and does a bang-up job on the clean-cut heartbreaker “Mine to Love”—but there’s too much, to use Chenoweth’s words, to

They’re everywhere —British songbirds trying to take over the world with their voices. But Katy B, who’s already made major headway in her native a name that’s destined to catch on.

Also Out

Miranda Lambert isn’t someone that likes to be messed with, which the country superstar has made clear on three consistently solid solo CDs. Now she and her two accomplices, Ashley Monroe and Angaleena Presley, are Hell on Heels, the kitschy and cautionary title of the girl group’s first album


Jon McLaughlin, Forever If Ever We loved him as the hot ballroom balladeer who stole hearts during Enchanted. But don’t stop swooning; his fourth album features “I’ll Follow You,” another solid slowie in the vein of “So Close.” Much of the rest, though, is grounded in the John Mayer genre: “Promising Promises,” opening with organ, is a falsetto showcase; “Summer is Over” is his best chance at a hit (even if it’s not the best track), and “You are What I’m Here For” is a lovely song of desperation. The ’80s influences of his last album no longer exist, instead gleaning inspiration from grunge-rock for “I Brought this on Myself” and neo-Hanson on “Without You Now.” Outside of that, it’s still McLaughlin— sweet and safe. Reach Chris Azzopardi at

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Out of Town: Michigan Vacation by Andrew Collins Saugatuck, Ann Arbor & Detroit

As the cooler weather of early autumn settles in, southern Michigan becomes a particularly enchanting spot for a vacation. Here’s a look at three very different communities in this part of the state: artsy and coastal Saugatuck, collegiate and progressive Ann Arbor, and scrappy and culturally rich Detroit. Each makes an appealing weekend destination, or you could easily visit all three of these places as part of an extended road trip through the region. Here’s the skinny on what these three Michigan destinations have to offer, from friendly gay bars and stylish restaurants to some of the Midwest’s most acclaimed cultural attractions.


The charming town of Saugatuck (, in combination with the neighboring village of Douglas, offers a bounty of urbane restaurants, handsome B&Bs, funky boutiques, and high-quality art galleries, as well as some of the most picturesque beach frontage on Lake Michigan. The towns are separated by a wide expanse of the Kalamazoo River, which empties into Lake Michigan. From one village center to the other, it’s just a mile’s drive or stroll, and it’s also a mile from either community to the sweeping Oval Beach (gays and lesbians tend to congregate more at the northern section of this sandy sunbathing mecca). If you’re in an outdoorsy mood, consider paddling around town in a kayak - Running Rivers Kayak Rentals offers tours and rentals. For a little more exercise, climb the 282 steps to the top of the area’s highest sand dune, Mt. Baldhead, which affords stunning views. Worthy dining options in Saugatuck include Wicks Park Bar & Grill (, an attractive gastropub that presents live music many nights, and convivial Uncommon Grounds ( coffeehouse, a good place to pick up an over-stuffed sandwich, slice of carrot cake, or espresso. In downtown Douglas, the outstanding Everyday People Cafe ( serves beautifully prepared contemporary fare and has a lively bar following among the local gay set. And for a light lunch or decadent snack, try Cookies on Call (, noted for its whitechocolate-and-caramel or dark-chocolateand-dried-blueberry cookies. Considered the Midwest’s largest gay hotel, the Dunes Resort (, is also the area’s top nightlife draw, with a large dance floor, piano cabaret, and a huge fenced-in sundeck and bar with a large pool and lush foliage. The rambling 20-acre compound has 65 hotel units, ranging from cottages to conventional rooms; some rooms have fireplaces and hot tubs. You’ll find no shortage of historic B&Bs in the area, many of them gay-owned, including the elegant and inviting Kirby House (, a stately 1890 Queen Anne on the edge of downtown Douglas. Talented gay author Salvatore Sapienza (Seventy Times Seven) and his partner Greg

operate Saugatuck’s wonderful Beechwood Manor (, which has three lovely rooms and a pet-friendly three-bedroom cottage. It’s close to downtown but on a quiet, tree-shaded street. A bit farther afield is the gracious Belvedere Inn (, a regal 1913 mansion designed by a colleague of Frank Lloyd Wright—it’s about 3 miles northeast of Saugatuck. The Belvedere’s superb restaurant, which serves such rarefied Continental cuisine, makes a perfect setting for celebrating a special occasion. There are also a few affordable motels around the area, including the gay-owned Pines Motor Lodge (, a rustic but retro-hip, pale-green motor court that’s been beautifully restored, its 13 rooms with simple but stylish decor. The owners also rent a guest house and cottages.

Ann Arbor

Ann Arbor, which is anchored by the University of Michigan (U of M), has long been a beacon of liberal politics, high culture, and vibrant campus living. For the city’s many gays and lesbians, the great sense of community and tolerance make it a wonderful place to live. The city’s humanscale downtown and spirited campus meld together almost imperceptibly. You can get a feel for area by strolling across the campus green—known as the Diag (short for “Diagonal”). Be sure to set aside time to visit the of U of M Museum of Art, whose collections span 13,000 years; the U of M Museum of Natural History, one of the best such-museums in the state. Ann Arbor’s downtown is characterized by brick sidewalks, old-fashioned gas lamps, diverse architecture, and an abundance of boutiques, art galleries, and restaurants. It’s a short walk to the funky Kerrytown neighborhood, where you can stop by one of the most acclaimed gourmetfood markets and delis in the Midwest, Zingerman’s (, and grab a seat on the sunny terrace to enjoy a memorable lunch or breakfast. Other notable eateries around Ann Arbor include the contemporary West End Grill (, which draws raves for its deftly prepared seafood and steaks. For stellar modAsian cuisine, consider Pacific Rim by Kana ( Seva ( vegetarian eatery is a great spot for bountiful salads and garden burgers, and Grizzly Peak ( turns out terrific hand-crafted beers and interesting food. If you’re in town at breakfast of brunch-time, check out Zola Cafe and Bistro (, which is also quite popular for lunch, dinner, or even just a latte or fresh smoothie. Ann Arbor has one gay bar, Aut Bar (, a welcoming venue with a diverse crowd - it’s set inside a converted 1916 house in Kerrytown, next to the GLBT bookstore, Common Language. The city’s favorite dance club, the Necto ( is also fun and has a gay party on Tuesdays. Ann Arbor contains a typical mix of chain motels and hotels as well as a handful of smaller, more distinctive properties.

Oval Beach, in Saugtauck. Photo by Andrew Collins Right on campus, the Bell Tower Hotel ( occupies a handsomely preserved building with reproduction antiques. And the Burnt Toast Inn ( has seven moderately priced rooms, a great location in a historic neighborhood, and—despite the name— tasty Continental breakfasts.


The country’s 18th largest city is difficult to get a full grasp of on a short visit, but with a couple of days, you do at least have enough time to see some incredible museums, dine at some outstanding restaurants, and check out a few of Michigan’s best gay bars. An absolute must-see is the Detroit Institute of Arts (DIA), whose central foyer contains spectacular Depression-era frescoes by Diego Rivera. The museum, whose collection holds 65,000 works, anchors the Cultural Center district—near the campus of Wayne State University. Nearby you can visit such notable attractions as the Detroit Historical Museum as well as the Motown Museum, which celebrates the careers of such R&B legends as Marvin Gaye, Diana Ross, and the Jackson 5. Walk along downtown’s main drag, Woodward Avenue, and you’ll come upon a stellar theater district, a highlight of which is the fantastically elaborate 1927 Fox Theatre. Within walking distance is the Bonstelle Theatre, where Lily Tomlin got her start; Orchestra Hall at the Max M. Fisher Music Center, home of the Detroit Symphony; and the impressive Detroit Opera House, which boasts one of the world’s largest stages. To get a full sense of metro Detroit, venture out of downtown. A bit east you’ll find 1,000-acre Belle Isle, an urban retreat in the middle of the Detroit River—it’s home to a fine beach and good jogging and biking paths. Drive northwest along Woodward Avenue to Ferndale, a formerly working-class community that’s become something of a gay stronghold over the years. Its main drag, West 9 Mile Road, has a few cool boutiques and vintage stores. The next town north, Royal Oak, is another bastion of hip dining and retail. And still

farther up Woodward Avenue, you’ll find upscale restaurants and shops in attractive Birmingham, and the acclaimed and recently renovated and expanded Cranbrook Art Museum in Bloomfield Hills—it was designed by modernist architectural legend Eliel Saarinen, whose nearby house is open seasonally for tours. Head west to Dearborn, the heart of the America’s auto-manufacturing heritage, to tour the Henry Ford Museum and Greenfield Village, a fascinating 81-acre complex of historic homes and structures moved here from across the country as well as an incomparable museum that traces the development of American technological innovation over the generations. When it comes to dining, metro Detroit has a number of highly regarded options. One of the most famous is Opus One (, set inside a former taxi garage built by Louis Kahn in 1916, and serving superb contemporary food. A funky eatery on the edge of the Cultural Center, the Majestic Cafe ( scores high marks for its art exhibits and eclectic comfort food, while lesbian-owned Avalon International Breads ( is renowned among foodies for its fine coffees, artisan breads, and delicious sandwiches and salads. And Slows Bar-B-Q ( is one of the top urban barbecue joints in the country, earning raves for its St. Louis-style ribs and sliced brisket. In Ferndale, snag a table at the atmopsheric Fly Trap Diner ( to sample heavenly gingerbread waffles or one of the best BLTs in the area. Long-time gay favorite Como’s ( is a good bet for redsauce Italian fare. Royal Oak restaurant notables include the dapper Town Tavern (,andthecharming Cafe Muse (, which serves a delectable grilled cheese that’s been featured in Esquire Magazine. Fans of clubbing will find plenty of options in these parts. The most popular spots include Royal Oak’s gay video bar Pronto (, which adjoins the lovely restaurant of the same name; Ferndale’s sophisticated yet friendly

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Book Worm Sez by Terri Schlichenmeyer The Last Deployment: How a Gay, Hammer-Swinging Twentysomething Survived a Year in Iraq

by Bronson Lemer c.2011, University of Wisconsin Press $24.95 U.S. & Canada/223 pages They’ve become as familiar to you as your own living room: auditoriums filled with uniformed, spine-straight soldiers on their way to deployment, or smiling men and women, arms full of family, on their way home. And no matter what auditorium they’re

Across 1 Junior Vasquez is this kind of jockey 5 Stick your nose in 10 ___-tat 14 From the top 15 Old Mercury 16 Neighbor of Pakistan 17 64th album of 59-Across 20 Chef Traci ___ Jardins 21 Cardinals, on scoreboards 22 “___ the position!” 23 Erie, to fifty million Frenchmen 24 Warnings 27 Motor oil can letters 28 Jack of old Westerns 30 Zach Braff in _Broken Hearts Club_ 31 Do a banker’s job 32 Patron of Wilde’s homeland, briefly 34 Is capable, like a horse in _Guys and Dolls_ 36 Upcoming biography of 59-Across 41 Thespian 42 Lube user? 44 Pale gray 47 Part of a drag queen’s wig 50 French 101 verb 51 Appomattox signatory 52 Where to buy a top 54 Dr. George O’Malley has them inserted 55 Up the creek 57 Pacific battle site, in brief 58 Spring month for Vivien 59 Gay icon for nearly half a century 63 “___ shame” 64 “Over my dead body!” 65 Luncheon ending 66 One who gazes at crystal balls

in, no matter which small town or big city, you can bet that the first group is wondering what the second group has seen. They may never know, though, because much is buried and more is classified. But military secrets aren’t the only ones kept in times of war. In the new book “The Last Deployment” by Bronson Lemer, you’ll learn one of them. Bronson Lemer was “probably the last person anyone expected to join the military.” But, as the oldest of six children, he wanted to get away from North Dakota and “the army… happened to be at the right place at the right time.” Lemer was still in high school when he joined the National Guard.

Five years later, on January 20, 2003, his cell phone rang. Though he was months away from getting out of his Guard obligation and was “tired of it”, Lemer learned that he was being deployed. His “horrible decision” to join the National Guard was turning into something he never thought he’d have to worry about: Lemer was a gay soldier under a Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell policy. But in going to Iraq, he knew he had to learn to rely on his fellow soldiers, and vice versa. So he tried to relax as he traveled with them to Colorado and, later that spring, to Kosovo, then to Iraq. Lemer went along with the jokes, the girlfriend talk, and the “adolescent” behavior. He participated in anything that banished the boredom of guard

Q-PUZZLE: “Funny Girl”

67 “Leaves a mark on 68 Overture to a split end?

Down 1 Screws around 2 Wedding vow phrase

duty, building, cleaning duty, and outhouse duty. He emailed a former love, and longed for home. As a few months’ tour of duty stretched into a year, Lemer began to notice something: deployment was taking its toll on everybody. The men and women who left the States were not the same people who came home from Iraq. And neither was Lemer. Over the past decade, you’ve undoubtedly seen lots of TV and read many words about the War in Iraq. But just wait until you get your hands on “The Last Deployment”… Author Bronson Lemer’s memoir of being a gay man in the military is half sass and half sad with a few heart-pounding moments but no blood-and-guts. His story moves between idyllic memories of his growing-up and warm feelings for his bunkmates and co-soldiers, while readers are also placed in the center of the boredom of waiting, the frustration of not knowing, and the dismay of hiding in order to be accepted. Lemer’s is a wonderfully descriptive, wryly humorous, heart-crushing story, and I couldn’t put it down. With the repeal this month of Don’t Ask Don’t Tell, this is timely and definitely worth a read. If you love a soldier, your country, or both, “The Last Deployment” is a book you’ll want to tell everybody about.

3 Albee Pulitzer Prize work 4 100 lbs. 5 Amulet for Antony’s girlfriend 6 Like one’s own tongue 7 Make a choice 8 Prospector’s find 9 Jack Sparrow activity 10 Hoops for the New York Liberty 11 Turn on 12 Explorer of southern Australia 13 Chipped in 18 Britten’s raincoat 19 Teakettle sound 25 Broadway cries of “More! More!” 26 Open a crack 29 Asia’s ___ Peninsula 31 One under a captain 33 Gentle handling, initially 35 God of Gaius 37 Big footstools 38 Like slasher films 39 “We’re here, we’re queer, get used to it!” and others 40 Slaves, to a master 43 A liver does this 44 Cover stories 45 Place to turn pages? 46 _Six Feet Under_ auto 48 Third Reich chronicler Willia 49 They scatter their seed afar 52 It gets laid in the street 53 Waikiki paste 56 Type of ski lift 60 Debussy’s dry 61 Some dam govt. project 62 30-day mo.



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EVENTS of dance from the last 100 years. For more info, contact Mark McCusker at iowadancefest@, 319-621-8530 or Nora Garda at 319-400-4695, or visit http://iowadancefest. [ L G B T M W A ] Every Tuesday, ARGENTINE TANGO, 7:309:30 PM, Iowacity/Johnson Co Senior Center, 28 South Linn Street, Iowa City, IA 52240. Practice and open dance. A donation of $1-2 per person is requested for use of the Senior Center. For more info, contact Karen Jackson at 319-447-1445 or e-mail kljedgewood@msn. com. [ L G B T M W A ] Every Tuesday, KARAOKE IDOL, 9 PM, Studio 13, 13 South Linn Street, Iowa City, IA 52240. Drink specials and great competition! Visit [ L G B T M W A ] Every Tuesday, ACE HAS FACE THE MUSIC & DANCE, 7-9pm, 26 E Market St, Iowa City, IA 52245. All skill levels are welcome. Tango, Waltz, Disco, Country, American social dance, Latin, a mix from the last 100 years. Join on Facebook at group.php?gid=372454708295. For more info, contact ACE experiment at 319-853-8223. [ L GBTMWA] First and Third Tuesday, YOUTH FOR EQUALITY, 4-6pm, The CENTER, 1300 W Locust St, Des Moines, IA 50309. A service and action group for youth who identify as LGBTQI and their allies. Open to all students in grades 5 through 12. [ L G B T M W A ] Second Tuesday of the Month, PITCH HIV+ PEER-TO-PEER SUPPORT GROUP, 6-8pm, The CENTER, 1300 Locust St, Des Moines, IA . Contact John at 515.284.3358 with questions. [ + ]


1st Wednesday of the Month, CEDAR RAPIDS CHARTER CHAPTER OF THE AMERICAN BUSINESS WOMEN’S ASSOCIATION, For more info, visit [ LW] 1st Wednesday of the Month, WOMEN’S SACRED CIRCLE, 6:30-8 PM, Prairiewoods Franciscan Spirituality Center, 120 E. Boyson Rd, Hiawatha, IA 52233. This group is for women who are interested in gathering for spiritual growth. The direction and activities of the group are determined by participants. $5 per session. For more info, visit [ L W ] 1st Wednesday of the Month, CONNECTIONS’ RAINBOW READING GROUP, 7 PM, Iowa City Public Library Meeting Room B, 123 South Linn Street, Iowa City, IA 52240. For more info, contact Todd at: [ LGBTMWA] 2nd Wednesday of the Month, STONEWALL DEMOCRATS, THE GLBT CAUCUS OF

THE DEMOCRATIC PARTY, 6:30-8 PM, For more info, contact Harvey Ross at or call 319-389-0093. [ L G BTMWA] 2nd Wednesday of the Month, WOMEN FOR PEACE KNITTERS, 7-9 PM, Hiawatha, IA . at Prairiewoods, 120 E. Boyson Rd., Hiawatha. Knitting, crocheting, and discussion. For more info, call 319-377-3252 or go to www. All ages and levels of needlework skills welcome. Come knit for charities. [ L W ] 2nd Wednesday, OUT NETWORKING, 5:30, Des Moines Social Club, 1408 Locust St, Des Moines, IA 50309. A social, business, and philanthropic networking organization for anyone who is lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgendered, questioning or supportive. The group presents year-round events focused on business, culture, community, and philanthropic subjects. [ L G B T A ] Every Wednesday, HOT MESS EXPRESS, 8:00pm, Des Moines Social Club, 1408 Locust St., Des Moines, IA . The hottest most messiest citizens of Des Moines providing a comedic look at the hottest most messiest current events around the world. Featuring: Paul Selberg, Rachel C. Johnson, Kelley Robinson & Tyler Reedy [ L G B T A ] Every Wednesday, U OF I GAY LESBIAN BISEXUAL TRANSGENDER AND ALLIES UNION MEETINGS, 7-9 PM, Iowa City, IA . at the Penn State Room #337 of the Iowa Memorial Union, U. of Iowa campus, Iowa City. For more info, visit or e-mail These meetings are open to the public. [ L G B T M W A ] Every Wednesday, PRIDE BOWLING LEAGUE FOR GLBT & SUPPORTERS, 7 PM, Des Moines, IA at Air Lanes Bowling Center 4200 Fleur Drive. For more info, email or call 515-650-1725. [L G B T M W A] Every Wednesday, Lez Talk!, 8:30 p.m., Des Moines, IA. Capital City Talk Show hosted by lezzies and made for All people. [L G B T M W A] Every Wednesday, OMAHA FRONTRUNNERS/WALLKERS, 6:30 PM. For more information call 402-804-8720. [ L G B T M W A ] First and Third Wednesday of the Month, PITCH HIV+ PEER-TO-PEER SUPPORT GROUP, Friends and Children’s Council, 500 E 4th St, Ste 414, Waterloo, IA . RSVP to tamih@ (requested but not required). (First meeting will be January 19, 2011 from 5:30-7:30pm at the CASS office, 2101 Kimball Ave, Ste 401, Waterloo.) [ + ]


1st 3rd Thursday, EVENINGS FOR SPIRIT, 6:30-8:30 PM, West Branch, IA . at SpiritHill Retreat, 604 Cedar Valley Road, West Branch. First, third, and fifth Thursdays of each month. Women gather at SpiritHill (or other locations) to share our spiritual experiences, visions

and longings. The evenings include time for sharing and time for silence. Laughter, tears and singing are often shared as well. No specific spiritual practice is followed. This event is always open to newcomers. For more info, call 319-643-2613, or e-mail spirit-hill@earthlink. net. Calling in advance is highly recommended to confirm the location for the specific month of interest. [ L W ] 2nd Thursday of the Month, OPEN MIC WITH MARY MCADAMS, 7-9 PM, Des Moines, IA . at Ritual Café, on 13th St. between Locust and Grand, downtown Des Moines. Visit www. For more info, e-mail mary@ [ L G B T M W A ] 2nd Thursday of the Month, IOWA PFLAG OMAHA/COUNCIL BLUFFS CHAPTER MEETING, 7 PM (6:30 PM social time), Omaha, IA . at Mead Hall, First United Methodist Church, 7020 Cass St., Omaha. For more info, call 402-291-6781. [ L G B T M W A K ] 3rd Thursday of the Month, OPEN MIC HOSTED BY KIMBERLI, 7-10 PM, Cedar Rapids, IA . at the Blue Strawberry Coffee Company (now open after the flood), 118 2nd St. SE, Downtown Cedar Rapids. Signup at 6:30 p.m. or by e-mailing flyingmonkeyscr@ the week prior to the open mic. [ L G BTMWA] 3rd Thursday of the Month, LGBTQI YOUTH MOVIE NIGHT AT THE CENTER, 6:30-10pm, The CENTER, 1300 Locust, Des Moines, IA . This is part of the LGBTQI youth program, anyone 24 years old and younger is welcome. Come down spend the evening with your friends and make some new ones. 515-243-0313 [ L G B T + ] 3rd Thursday of the Month, IOWA PFLAG DUBUQUE/TRI-STATE CHAPTER MEETING, 7 PM, Dubuque, IA . at St. John’s Lutheran Church, 1276 White St., Dubuque. For more info, call 563-582-9388. [ L G B T M W A K ] 3rd Thursday of the Month, CONNECTIONS GAME NIGHT, 7-9 PM, Iowa City, IA . at Donnelly’s Pub, 110 E. College St., in downtown Iowa City. [ L G B T M W A ] 4th Thursday of the Month, PROFESSIONAL WOMEN’S NETWORK (PWN), For more info, visit, e-mail pwn@, or call Shelley Woods at 319-9819887. [ L W ] Every Thursday and Friday, SHANNON JANSSEN, 6-10 PM, Cedar Rapids, IA . Dawn’s Hide and Bead Away, 220 E. Washington St., Iowa City. Shannon performs a variety of music including original songs on the Grand Piano in the hotel’s beautiful atrium. No reservations required. [ L G B T M W A ] Last Thursday of the Month, DRAG KING SHOW, 9:00pm-2pm, Studio 13, 13 S. Linn St, Iowa City, IA 52240. The show starts EARLY at 9pm, so all you fans under 21 (meaning 19 & 20) can come for a jam packed hour of show! Your kings will also have another photo signing with awesome king swag! Plus, a SECOND mini show after the signing!!! $3 Bomb shots, $2 Calls and Domestics, and $1 Wells and shots! Cover is only $3! [ L G B T D ]


1st Friday of the Month, FAIRFIELD ART WALK, For more info, visit FairfieldArtWalk. com. [ L G B T M W A ] 1st Friday of the Month, GUERRILLA QUEER BAR MEETUP!, Tired of the same old bars? Crave the idea of bringing your queer and straight friends together in a fun, new environment? We’re descending upon an unsuspecting straight bar and turning it into a gay bar for the night. To join in: join our Facebook group, Google group or Twitter feed. You’ll receive an email the morning of each event with the name of a classically hetero bar and the meeting time. Call your friends, have them call their friends, show up at the bar and watch as it becomes the new “it” gay bar for one night only. Visit groups. [ L G B T M W A ] 1st Friday of the Month, FIRST FRIDAY BREAKFAST CLUB, Sherman Place, 1501 Woodland Avenue, Des Moines, IA 95030. The First Friday Breakfast Club (FFBC) is an educational, non-profit corporation for gay men who gather on the first Friday of every month to provide mutual support, to be educated on community affairs, and to further educate

OCTOBER 2011 community opinion leaders with more positive images of gay men. It is the largest breakfast club in the state of Iowa. Hoyt Sherman Place, 1501 Woodland Avenue, Des Moines, IA 95030. Contact Jonathan Wilson at (515) 288-2500 or email: [ G B ] 1st Friday of the Month, DAWN’S COFFEE HOUSE, 5-8 PM, Iowa City, IA . Dawn’s Hide and Bead Away, 220 E. Washington St., Iowa City. First Friday of every month between February 6 and December 4. Music and light snacks are provided. Proceeds from the door are split between the non-profit of the month and the store (to cover the cost of snacks). Any other donations received go 100% to the non-profit. $3 cover. For more info, phone 319-338-1566. [LGBTMWA] 2nd and 4th Friday, DRUMMING CIRCLE, 7 PM, Cedar Rapids, IA . Unity Center of Cedar Rapids, 3791 Blairs Ferry Rd. NE, Cedar Rapids. Every 2nd and 4th Friday of the each month. For more info, call 319-431-7550. [ G M ] 3rd Friday of the Month, OLD-TIME DANCE FOR ALL, 8 PM, Iowa City, IA . A Barn Dance 12 miles east of Iowa City at Scattergood Friends School. A Barn Dance 12 miles east of Iowa City at Scattergood Friends School. Admission is $5.00 per person. Singles and couples, beginners and veterans welcome. The music is live, and all dances are taught and called (that is, prompted while the music is playing). Note: (1) same-sex couples are common at these dances, (2) they’re no-alcohol, no-smoking events, (3) every dance is taught, so beginners are welcome, and (4) people can attend alone or with a partner. People of a variety of ages show up, and the atmosphere is friendly and inclusive. For more info, phone 319-643-7600 or e-mail [LGBTMWA]


4th Saturday of the Month, LESBIAN BOOK CLUB, 7 PM, Davenport, IA . is reading books by or about lesbians. Non-lesbians are welcome to attend. All meetings are held at the Unitarian Universalist Church, 3707 Eastern Ave., Davenport. For more info, call 563-3590816. [ L ] 4th Saturday of the Month, TANGOVIA, 7:30 PM, Iowa City, IA . join area tango dancers at the Wesley Center, 120 N. Dubuque St., Iowa City. Enjoy a candlelit evening of dance, hors d’oeuvres, and conversation in a relaxed atmosphere. Cost is $5. Partner not necessary. Beginners welcome to come at 7 p.m. for an introductory lesson. For more info, call Gail at 319-325-9630, e-mail, or visit [ L G B T M W A D ] Every Saturday, WOMEN FOR PEACE IOWA, Noon to 1PM, Collins Rd NE & 1st Ave SE, Cedar Rapids, IA 52402. hosting Weekly Street Corner Vigils for peace, rain or shine. Meet at the corner of 1st Ave. and Collins Rd. SE (in front of Granite City Brewery), Cedar Rapids. Show your support for our troops by calling for their return from Iraq. For more info, e-mail [ L G B T M W A K D ] Every Saturday, BAILE LATINO: SALSA, CHA-CHA, MERENGUE AND BACHATA LESSONS, 3:30 PM to 5:30 PM, Cedar Rapids, IA . taught by Gloria Zmolek, at CSPS, 1103 3rd St. SE, Cedar Rapids. No experience or partner necessary. All ages welcome. No sign-up required. $5 per person requested. For more info, contact Gloria at 319-365-9611 or visit [ L G B T M W A K D ]

ACCESSline Page 29 Section 3: Community Greater Omaha GLBT Network First Friday Breakfast Club: Dr. Dwight C. Watson by Bruce Carr OCTOBER 2011

The mission of GOglbt is to advance growth and equality for its members, businesses and allies by providing educational, networking and community-building opportunities. We typically meet the first Thursday every month at a traveling location to see the community and be seen. For more information or to be included on the e-newsletter list, please email us at Thursday, October 6th, 5PM - 7PM : GOglbt Networking Meeting at PFLAG Thursday, November 3rd, 5PM-7PM : GOglbt Networking Meeting at Inclusive Communities at Security National Bank

Wilson Resource Center Calendar for October

The WRC is an Iowa Great Lakes gay-owned nonprofit community based organization advocating for full equality for all people, regardless of sexual orientation & gender identity/ expression, & providing free & confidential support, social, informational & educational resources for gay, lesbian, bisexual, transgender, two-spirit, intersex, queer, questioning, asexual & allied (GLBTIQA) people. Wednesday, October 5, 5:30 - 6:30 PM, WRC Friends Committee : Wilson Resource Center (WRC), Arnolds Park, IA Wednesday, October 5, 7 - 9 PM, WRC Gay Support and Discussion Group, Confidential location contact Joe Wilson, 712-339-7015, for confidential location.

Religious-based Bigotry on College Campuses While a number of religious denominations have and are currently defending the rights of Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender people, and are openly welcoming them into their congregations, and some into the ranks of their clergy, a number of the more conservative denominations have released official statements, doctrines, and policies in opposition. For example: Catholic Catechism: 1997: #2357 ” …homosexual acts [are] acts of grave depravity…[and] are intrinsically disordered…Under no circumstances can they be approved”; Southern Baptist Convention: 2010, “…the messengers to the Southern Baptist Convention…affirm the Bible’s declaration that homosexual behavior is intrinsically disordered and sinful.”; Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints: “Homosexual behavior violates the commandments of God, is contrary to the purposes of human sexuality, distorts loving relationships, and deprives people of the blessings that can be found in family life and in the saving ordinances of the gospel.” Beliefs are one’s rights to hold. However, the EXPRESSION of those beliefs onto an individual or group of individuals is a form of oppression, especially when intended to deny people their human and civil rights. In addition, with religious rights come responsibilities, and with actions come reactions. Whenever clergy pronounce and preach their conservative dogma on sexuality and gender expression, they must take responsibility for the bullying, harassment, violence against and suicides of LGBT people in their congregations, communities, and country. Thursday, October 6th at 3 PM Eastern, this webinar will investigate religious denominations’ statements and policies related to LGBT people, and address possible strategies from within and outside of these institutions to work for progressive and

compassionate change. Participants will: • Discuss policies and official statements of some religious denominations related to LGBT people. • Distinguish between “religious disagreement” and “confronting oppression.” • Compare and contrast textual and historical justifications used by some religious denominations to perpetuate heterosexism, racism, sexism, and other forms of oppression. • Address possible action strategies to initiate progressive social change within religious denominations.


Warren Blumenfeld, Associate Professor in the Department of Curriculum and Instruction, Iowa State University & QRIHE, Campus Pride Warren J. Blumenfeld, Ed.D., is Associate Professor in the Department of Curriculum and Instruction at Iowa State University in Ames, Iowa specializing in Multicultural and International Curriculum Studies; & Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, and Queer Studies. He is Co-Editor of Investigating Christian Privilege and Religious Oppression in the United States; Co-editor of Readings for Diversity and Social Justice; Editor of Homophobia: How We All Pay the Price; Co-author of Looking at Gay and Lesbian Life; Co-editor of Butler Matters: Judith Butlers Impact on Feminist and Queer Studies; Author of AIDS and Your Religious Community; & Co-Researcher & Co-Author: 2010 State of Higher Education for Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender People. Presented by Campus Pride in partnership with the CAMPUSPEAK. More information is available online at

Our guest speaker on the first Friday of September 2011 was Dr. Dwight C. Watson, since July of 2010 Dean of the College of Education at the University of Northern Iowa in Cedar Falls. Dr. Watson—“Dwight,” he insisted—spoke movingly of his closeted youth, growing up in the Piedmont of South Carolina, and of his career as an educator. But now, he said (50 years later) he’s finding great joy and promise in the pop culture of today’s teenagers, and he quoted enthusiastically several songs by such artists as Lady Gaga to prove his point. The insistence on diversity and “being who you are” that Watson sees today is a far cry from 1960s Sumter, South Carolina, where he found himself an “outlaw:” smart, fat, black, and not interested in girls. So he immersed himself in his Baptist religion and his schoolwork; now he realizes that he used his overweight as a “beard” for his secret sexuality, letting folks assume that he didn’t date because the girls thought he was too fat. He was 33 before he finally came out to his mother (who, in the time-honored way, told him that she “sorta knew”). Starting out as an elementary school teacher, Watson has since taken his passions—for Literacy as Access and for making safe places for every kind

Dr. Dwight C. Watson

of student—all around the country, both in his own continuing education and in professorial and administrative posts in several school systems and universities. As was revealed in questions after his speech, he has stayed connected with his Christian roots. He can understand (without condoning it) why it’s so difficult for fundamentalists to accept such “outlaw” ideas as samesex marriage. As he tells his Iowa-bred, budding teachers at UNI: the place where you’ve come from is not the

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Inside Out: Going Home by Ellen Krug A couple of months ago, something unexpected arrived in the mail: a wedding invitation from a Cedar Rapids lawyer friend and his wife. Their daughter was getting married. Why was the invite a surprise? Barely two years ago, I shocked— that would be the right word—much of the Cedar Rapids legal community by revealing I was transgender. Many people expressed support—including my dear lawyer friend and his wife-but not everyone. Some might think I could be a distracting sideshow, so I viewed the invitation as both generous and courageous. Thus, in late August, I would return to Cedar Rapids for the wedding at a well-known church, followed by an upscale reception at an even better known country club. Many of my old friends would be encountering Ellen for the first time and I worried about what they’d think. I had to look nice, and reached out to the one person who is always on track with fashion— my ex-wife, Lydia. I emailed, “Can I wear black to a wedding? Do I need to wear hose? Are flats alright , or should I wear heels?” Lyd i a q u i c k ly answered: “Yes, no, your choice.” I went through my closet and found a couple of black dress options. Since I have a million shoes, I was set. I had time to kill on the morning of the wedding day, so I stopped to see an artist friend and her husband. When I walked into their gallery, Julia asked, “May I help you?” Once I flashed my smile, she gasped, “Oh, Ellen!” After a few minutes, she showed me her most recent a project. It was a series of 4x6 plastic blocks on which she had laminated various items—pictures, parts of letters, a bus ticket—from her life, representing things she considered important. There were maybe 50 blocks

altogether. As we talked, I scanned the edges of the blocks, and to my amazement, I saw, “Ellen Krug, Inside Out.” “Julia, what’s this?” She had taken one of my columns— one entitled “Taking Risks”—and laminated it to a block. It was a piece about someone reading me in public and asking “Are you a dude?” She had folded the column, accordion style, so that you could pull it out to read. “I was touched by your column,” she said earnestly. In an instant , I was humbled. Julia is a fantastic artist who knows hundreds of people. That she would pick my writing as something important enough to preserve was so unexpected. And moving. Later, on my way out of the gallery, I ran into an artist who had created a painting of my daughters when they were little girls. The painting depicts them drawing in chalk on the driveway at my beautiful old house, the one that I had to leave when I became Ellen. My daughters were chalking the w o r d s , “ We l c o m e Home.” When I told the artist the picture is central to the book that I’m finishing, she started to tear up. “You don’t know how important it is that I’m hearing this,” she said as she hugged me. It was impossible not to be touched. I still had four hours before the wedding and I was already an emotional wreck. But I pulled myself together. At the wedding ceremony, I was seated next to neighbors from my old neighborhood. I smiled at the woman and she smiled back, but she had no clue who I was. I said, “Hi, it’s Ellen.” The woman continued to look

My daughters were chalking the words, “Welcome Home.” When I told the artist the picture is central to the book that I’m finishing, she started to tear up.

dumbfounded. Then, I said, “Ellen Krug, you used to know me as a man.” My old neighbor’s face lit up. “Oh my god. I would never have known.” She whispered to her husband, who was a bit less excited to see me. At the receiving line after the ceremony, my friend and his wife hugged me tight and seemed to go out of their way to introduce me to the groom’s parents and family members. When I got to the country club reception, people from my old life approached me. “Ellen, great to see you!” They were genuinely interested in hearing about my life in Minneapolis, the one where I have no more compartments, and no more denial. It felt wonderful. And there were additional hugs, mainly from men. Wow. I sat at a dinner table between Ray, a cherished Cedar Rapids friend, and Lydia, my ex-wife turned best girlfriend forever. On the other side of Lydia was Stephen, her boyfriend of several years. The scene was surreal. Who could have predicted this, especially after all the pain Lydia and my daughters experienced by my transitioning? It was a testament to the resiliency of the human spirit—theirs and mine. Everything worked until the postmeal toasts. The best man toasted the bride and groom in an eloquent speech. But then, there were toasts to the bride and groom’s respective parents; each couple had been married thirty years. As I heard, “To thirty years!” I felt a rush of pain deep in my heart. Next year would have been my thirtieth wedding anniversary, and suddenly, the grief became overwhelming. “I have go,” I said, jumping out of my seat with tears welling. As I drove from the country club crying, I realized that all along, I had been steeling myself for how people would react to me. I had forgotten that I might react to them or to the memory

I discovered that my old friends—and even Lydia—are willing to love and respect me for who I am now. That, truly, is a gift.

Ellen Krug is a writer, lawyer, human. She was a trial attorney for 28 years before realizing there is more to life. She is now on sabbatical to write a book, and if that does not work out, to wait tables. She is parent to two adult children and hoping for the best, despite the odds. She can be reached at of my old life. The wedding unexpectedly reminded me of what could have been, had I stayed a man. The losses— especially losing Lydia, the love of my life, my soul mate—are enormous. But then I remembered there’s a balancing out, because today I get to live as my true self, as Ellen. I discovered that my old friends—and even Lydia—are willing to love and respect me for who I am now. That, truly, is a gift. I couldn’t ask for anything more. Thank you, Cedar Rapids. Your generosity is enormous.

I had forgotten that I might react to them or to the memory of my old life. The wedding unexpectedly reminded me of what could have been, had I stayed a man.

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Section 3: Community


Twenty Questions interview by Amber Dunham

In 2010, high school student Amber Dunham participated in a class assignment to ask someone 20 questions for an LGBT essay. The person Amber chose to ask was Alexis, a transgendered woman from the Iowa City area. Amber’s questions covered Alexis’s definition of transgender, details of Alexis’s life and emotions prior to accepting her desire to be a girl, reactions from family and friends, psychological and medical requirements prior to sexual reassignment surgery, details of sexual reassignment surgery, federal and state document changes after Alexis’s surgery, advice Alexis would give to others, effects of Alexis’s change, and her religious views. Any questions or comments for Alexis can be sent care of this publication to

(Continued from September Issue) 17) What would you say to others that may want to do a change? Think hard before you do it. For those who are prepared for the transition, the surgery can be very rewarding. However, there is so much more to the act of transitioning gender roles than simply wearing different clothes. It is a new way of living, with different opportunities and restrictions that are put on us by society. It can be a unique challenge, and one that is quite rewarding. If you mean ‘change’ in regards to the SRS, remember that when it comes to the Male to Female surgery, there is basically no going back. It’s permanent. Years ago , when the SRS became more commonplace, there were several individuals who had the surgery and later regretted it, which resulted in emotional problems and suicides. Because of this the medical community developed certain ethical standards that the majority of physicians around the world follow (the previously mentioned Benjamin Standards), though doctors in certain countries may vary them a little. The act of transitioning is not as easy as it may seem, as there are always unexpected twists

that come up that you are unprepared for, and the way you handle it will make or break your acceptance in your new role. Confidence is a priority for success. You need to be able to ’think on your feet.’ And, another point to keep in mind; the surgeons around here whom I talked to, insist on being paid in full before the date of surgery. Sex reassignment surgery is covered by very few private insurance policies. In order to have your transition be a success, you have to not only have the confidence, but the techniques down also—like makeup, wardrobe, mannerisms and speech. You simply can not act like a guy dressing as a girl. You won’t make it. In my mind, your worst critics, and your best friends, are the other girls. If you can demonstrate your sincerity to them, you will be accepted and respected for what you are doing, and they will welcome you. If not, your life maybe a little more challenging. Additionally, one needs to keep in mind all that you can lose from your life when you

decide to transition. It is not uncommon to lose family, friends and your current employment. In some parts of the country you may not be readily accepted and you need to constantly be aware of possible violence against your person. Several times a year I read of a trans person who was found dead, often assaulted and tortured beforehand. It is sad, and a shame, but there are definitely those individuals in the world who believe the person who undergoes the SRS is toying with the will of god—after all, if god had wanted you to be a female, you would have been born that way. These people have the same feelings about gay, and lesbians and others. Fortunately these folks are in the minority, and the majority of your friends and neighbors are willing to accept diversity—to a point. The individual who transitions needs to know and understand when to challenge, and when to remain passive and learn to go with the flow…so to speak. As I mentioned elsewhere…pick your battles. And realize that this isn’t just you. All minorities are

There is so much more to the act of transitioning gender roles than simply wearing different clothes.

forced to do the same thing every day. On the other hand, what you lose can often be replaced by new friends and new employment, both of which may be more accepting of who you are now. I, personally, have found this to be very true. The friends I thought I had in my previous life were not what I thought, and I guess I am not truly missing much since their departure. Those that remain a part of my life can, I know, accept me for who I am, as can all the wonderful new people I have met since I transitioned. The end result is that I am a much happier being, and in that respect the decision to go down this road has been a positive one for me. 18) I know you do not have any children but that you used to be a foster parent. If you were a foster parent today, what would you say to your foster child if she/he would ask why did you do the change? Basically, what I would say to anyone who wanted to sit down and ask about my experiences, I have always been open with everyone about this matter. Certainly I would tailor my response and explanations to the audience, but no subject would really

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be off limits. From my perspective, younger people are quite capable of coming to an understanding of the struggles I overcame. I am certainly not ashamed of what I did, and welcome the opportunity to work on educating people about my experiences as a transsexual, regardless of the age of the persons. I would simply try to have an open discussion with that foster child, much as I am with you, and try to explain why I felt it was the best thing for me to do. However, the problem with me currently becoming a foster parent; which I tried to accomplish again a couple years back, is actually getting an agency to place a child with you…at least in this state. I went through the foster care training program, passed the inspections, and was actually issued a license by the state. However, the state does not place foster children in this state, outside agencies do. Month after month after month went by and there were no serious requests to place anyone with me. I might receive a call but by the time I could return the call, I was informed they had already found another foster home. This was really frustrating, as I heard advertisement after advertisement talking about the need for foster parents in this state. I was never given a reason as to why there were no placements, but I‘ll leave you to draw your own conclusions.

SOHO ( lounge; and such Detroit mainstays as Menjo’s Complex, where Madonna used to party back in her early days; Gigi’s (, which employs a stable of hot male dancers. Among lodging options, consider the upscale Marriott Detroit (, which is set inside the soaring73-storymaintoweroftheGMRenaissance Center, and—across the street—the more moderately priced Courtyard Marriott ( Also excellent is the sleek Atheneum Suite Hotel (—all of these are close to Detroit’s festive Greektown and that neighborhood’s popular Greektown Casino. A short drive from downtown, the charming and historic Inn on Ferry Street ( offers inviting accommodations—it comprises four meticulously renovated Queen Anne homes plus a pair of Victorian carriage houses. Andrew Collins covers gay travel for the New York Times-owned website GayTravel. and is the author of Fodor’s Gay Guide to the USA. He can be reached care of this publication or at OutofTown@ (my site for the New York Times-owned (my travel blog)

and they lie in social media spaces. Further, manipulative people can use the anonymous nature of the Internet to wage attacks upon people at all hours of the day and regardless of your presence in or acknowledgment of that attack. Responsible use of the social media means that you are careful about associating with these types of people just as you would in personal interactions. Responsible use of Internet and social media means you verify what is being said just like you do in personal interactions. With personal interactions, you can walk away from attacks or avoid bad situations (or people) by not being present near them. Similarly, if you mean to have a good online reputation, one should avoid posting derogatory or destructive material, and one should avoid associating with people who do that.

ACCESSline Page 33 A guideline of interactions is that you cannot control what others do, but you can control what you do. Another guideline is that you should always think about what you say and do before you proceed. Even better, the golden rule applies where you should only do to others what you would have them do to you! Remember that talking trash about someone in personal interactions or relaying that online says more about your own character. As well, learning about the world and people is not limited to only our perspectives or like-minded people. While some aspects of etiquette and protocol may get lost with online interactions, many of the things we do for responsible personal interactions apply to responsible use of online interactions. We have to think of social media as simply another method of communication or interaction, and we have to be responsible for our actions both in-person and online.

Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things you didn’t do than by the ones you did do. So throw off the bowlines. Sail away from the safe harbour. Catch the trade winds in your sails. Explore. Dream. Discover. - MARK TWAIN

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Section 3: Community


OCTOBER 2011 DIRECTORY NOTICE The ACCESSline community directory is updated each issue. LISTINGS ARE FREE but are limited by space. Free online listings are available at Information about new listings must contain a phone number for publication and a contact (e-mail address, land address, or website) for our records. For more information or to provide corrections, please contact or call (319) 550-0957.

NATIONAL ORGANIZATIONS Please see the list of resources below about HIV, mental health, sexual orientation, and where you may seek help if you’re in crisis. HIV and STD Testing Sites near You, including places where you can get tested for free: Crisis or Suicide National Suicide Prevention Lifeline: Default.aspx or call 1-800-273-TALK Information on Mental Health National Alliance on Mental Illness: Counseling, Information and Resources about Sexual Orientation GLBT National Help Center: or 1-888-8434564 Information on Mental Health for Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender Find_Support/Multicultural_Support/Resources/ GLBT_Resources.htm Information on Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender Health Gay and Lesbian Victory Fund 1133 15th Street NW, Suite 350, Washington, DC 20005 202-VICTORY [842-8679] Human Rights Campaign National political organization, lobbies congress for lesbian & gay issues, political training state and local 1-800-777-HRCF[4723] Lambda Legal Defense & Education Fund I I E. Adams, Suite 1008, Chicago, IL 60603 312-663-4413 Fax: 312-663-4307 Housing & Mortgages for Gay & Lesbian Couples, National Gay & Lesbian Task Force (NGLTF) 1325 Massachusetts Ave NW, Ste 600, Washington, DC, 20005 / National Organization for Women (NOW) 733 15th ST NW, 2nd Floor Washington, DC 20005 202-628-8669 PFLAG National Offices 1133 15th Street NW, Suite 350, Washington, DC 20005 - 202-467-8180 The Trevor Lifeline The Trevor Project operates the only nationwide, around-the-clock crisis and suicide prevention lifeline for lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and questioning youth. Each year, our lifeline fields more than 30,000 calls from LGBTQ youth as well as their families, friends and educators. (866) 4-U-TREVOR - (866) 488-7386 Open 24 hours a day, 365 days a year All calls are toll-free and confidential

STATE ORGANIZATIONS Equality Iowa P.O. Box 18, Indianola, IA 50125 515-537-3126 Faithful Voices Interfaith Alliance of Iowa’s marriage equality project. Imperial Court of Iowa Non-profit fundraising & social, statewide organization with members from across the State of Iowa. PO Box 1491, Des Moines, IA 50306-1491 Iowa Chapter of the National Organization for Women (NOW) Janis Bowden, President, IA NOW PO Box 41114, Des Moines, IA 503111 Iowa Gay Rodeo Association (IAGRA) 921 Diagonal Rd, Malcom, IA 50157 641-990-1411

Section 3: Community Iowa PFLAG (Parents, Families & Friends of Lesbians and Gay) State Council PO Box 18, Indianola, IA 50125 aspx?pid=194&srcid=-2 515-537-3126 or 641-583-2024 Iowa Pride Network 777 Third Street, Suite 312, Des Moines, Iowa 50309 Executive Director: 515-471-8062 Outreach Coordinator: 515-471-8063 LGBT Youth in Iowa Schools Task Force PO Box 1997, Des Moines, 50306 515-243-1221 One Iowa 500 East Locust St, Ste 300 Des Moines, IA 50309 515-288-4019 Fax: 515-244-5846

Steve’s Place 852 Washington St, Burlington 319-754-5868 Unitarian Universalist Fellowship Services start at 10:30 am 625 N 6th St, Burlington, IA 52601-5032 (319) 753-1895 -

Cedar Falls - Waterloo Adult Cinema 315 E 4th St Waterloo, IA 50703-4703 (319) 234-7459 Black Hawk Co. Health Department Free HIV testing (donations accepted); MW, 1:00pm to 3:00pm; Thurs, 1:00pm to 4:45pm 1407 Independence Ave. (5th fl) Waterloo 50703 319-291 -2413

The Quire Eastern Iowa’s GLBT chorus

Cedar AIDS Support System (CASS) Service, support groups & trained volunteers for persons with HIV/AIDS in Waterloo/CF call Elizabeth or Karla, 319-272-AIDS(2437).

First United Methodist Church 516 Kellogg Ave, Ames, IA 50010 Contemporary worship Sat. 5:30; Sun at 8:30 and 11:00am. 515-232-2750

Cedar Valley Counseling Services Promoting personal growth and development in a strengths-based environment Joan E. Farstad, MA, Director. 319-240-4615


Living with HIV Program 126 S. Kellogg, Suite 1 Ask for Janelle (Coordinator) 515-956-3312 ext 106 or I -800-890-8230 ISU LGBTA Alliance GLBT Support, Activism, Social Events, Newsletter L East Student Office Space 2229 Lincoln Way, Ames, IA 50014-7163 515-344-4478 Lord of Life Lutheran 2126 Gable Lane, Ames 50014 Services Sundays at 9:00a.m.; Wed. 7:00pm. 515-233-2350 PFLAG Ames Youth and Shelter Services Offices 2328 Bristol Drive, Ames, IA 5001 2nd Tuesday, 7pm 515-291-3607 Romantics Pleasure Palace 117 Kellogg Street, Ames, IA 50010-3315 515-232-7717 United Church of Christ-Congregational 6th & Kellogg, Ames, 50010 Sunday Continental Breakfast, 9:00am; Sunday School, 9:30am; Worship 10:45am. 515-232-9323 Unitarian Universalist Fellowship of Ames 1015 Hyland Ave. Services: 9:30 am and 11:30 am, Sunday 515-292-5960 Unity Church of Ames 226 9th St. Sunday service and Sunday school 10:30am. Wednesday mediation 6:30pm, . www.websyt/unity/ames Daily dial-a-blessing 515-233-1613

Arnolds Park, Okoboji, Spencer, Spirit Lake The Royal Wedding Chapel 504 Church Street, Royal, IA 51357 712-933-2223 Wilson Resource Center An Iowa Great Lakes area gay-owned nonprofit community based organization. PO Box 486, 597 W. Okoboji Rd., Arnolds Park IA 51331-0486 712-332-5043

BURLINGTON Arrowhead Motel 2520 Mount Pleasant St Burlington, IA 52601-2118 319-752-6353 Faith Lutheran Church E L C A 3109 Sunnyside Ave Burlington, IA 52601-2341 HIV/AIDS Screening @ Des Moines County Health Department in Burlington 522 N 3rd By appointment between 8:00am to 4:30 319-753-8217 Confidential RISQUES IV (adult store) 421 Dry Creek Ave, West Burlington, IA 52601 (319) 753-5455 Sun - Wed 8am-Midnight Thurs - Sat Open 24 Hours

Cedar Valley Episcopal Campus Ministry. In Lutheran Center 2616 College St, Cedar Falls, IA 319-415-5747 Community AIDS Assistance Project (CAAP) Funding for special personal needs, community projects, and small grants that are AIDS related. PO Box 36, Waterloo, IA 50704 LGBTA Support Group at Hawkeye Community College Call Carol at 319-296-4014 for time & location of meeting Iowa Legal Aid Free civil legal service available to low income persons who qualify under income/asset guidelines. 607 Sycamore, #206, Waterloo, IA 50703 1-800-772-0039 or 319-235-7008 Kings & Queens Tap 304 W. 4th St, Waterloo, IA www.// 319-232-3001 Romantix Waterloo (Adult Emporium) 1507 La Porte Rd, Waterloo, IA 50702 319-234-9340 Stellas Guesthouse 324 Summit Ave, Waterloo, IA Private B&B, Overnight accommodations for adults only. 319-232-2122 St. Lukes Episcopal Church 2410 Melrose Dr, Cedar Falls, IA 50613 Services: Sunday 8:00 & 10:15, Thurs 11:30 319-277-8520 St. Timothys United Methodist Church 3220 Terrace Drive, Cedar Falls, 50613, 319-266-0464, info@sttims-umc-org, Contact Rev. Linda Butler “...welcome of all persons, including those of all sexual orientations and gender identities.” Together For Youth 233 Vold Dr, Waterloo, IA 50703 319-274-6768 UNI-LGBTA Alliance-Student Organization 244A Bartlet Hall, University of Northern Iowa Cedar Falls 50613 319-222-0003 United Church of Christ Cedar Falls 9204 University Avenue, Cedar Falls 319-366-9686 Unitarian Universalist Society of Black Hawk County 3912 Cedar Heights Dr, Cedar Falls, IA 319-266-5640

Cedar Rapids/marion Adult Shop 630 66th Ave SW, 319-362-4939 Adult Shop North 5539 Crane Lane, 319-294-5360 Cedar Rapids Unity (Formerly GLRC of Cedar Rapids) Support, social activities., or write to PO Box 1643 Cedar Rapids 52406-1643 Call and leave a message—all calls will be returned. 319-366-2055

Christ Episcopal Church “We have a place for you.” 220 40th Street NE, Cedar Rapids, IA 52404 319-363-2029 Club Basix Open 5pm to 2am M-F, Sat & Sun 3pm-2am 3916 1st Ave NE, Cedar Rapids 319-363-3194 Coe Alliance Education, activism & fun for GLBTQ and straight students, staff and people from the community. Coe College 1220 First Ave NE, Cedar Rapids, IA 52402 For information contact: or Erica Geers, faculty advisor at 319-861-6025 Community Health Free Clinic 947 14th Avenue SE, Cedar Rapids, IA 52401 319-363-0416 Free Medical Services provided for the uninsured and underserved patients of Cedar Rapids, Marion and the surrounding areas in Eastern Iowa. CSPS Legion Arts Contemporary Arts Center 1103 3rd St. SE 319-364-1580 Eden United Church of Christ 351 8th Ave SW, Cedar Rapids, Iowa 52404 (319) 362-7805 Sunday School 9am - Worship 10:15am Faith UMC 1000 30th Street NE, Cedar Rapids, 52402 Sunday services at 11:00am. 319-363-8454 Foundation 2 Crisis Counseling 24-hour telephone crisis counseling. or 1540 2nd Ave. SE Cedar Rapids, IA 319-362-2174 or 800-332-4224 Linn County Public Health 501 13th NW Free confidential HIV testing, 319-892-6000 Linn County Stonewall Democrats 2nd Wednesday of every month, 6:30-8 p.m. The LGBT Caucus of the Democratic Party, meets at March 9 we will be at the Kirkwood Hotel Lobby Cafe.After that we may go back to Blue Strawberry downtown, but we need time to check our options. For more info, contact linnstonewall@ Rapid AIDS Grant Wood Area Red Cross 3600 Rockwell Dr NE, Cedar Rapids, 52410 319-393-9579. People’s Church Unitarian Universalist A welcoming congregation. 4980 Gordon Ave NW, Cedar Rapids, IA 11am Sunday. 319-362-9827 PFLAG CR, Linn Co and Beyond Meets at Coffee Talk Cafe 37 Kirkwood Court SW Cedar Rapids, IowaContact Person: Diane Peterson Phone: 319-362-9827 6:30pm on the 4th Thursdays except months like November. (Email for alternate dates.) The Linn County Stonewall Democrats Meet 2nd Wednesdays, Blue Strawberry, 118 2nd St SE in Cedar Rapids, IA. Contact Harvey S. Ross, Toxic Nightclub 616 Second Ave SE, Cedar Rapids Tri-ess, Iota Kappa Phi Chapter P.O. Box 8605, Cedar Rapids, Iowa 52408 We are a transgendered organization supporting crossdressers, their families, and friends., 319-390-6376 E-mail: Georgia E-mail: Judy Unity Center of Cedar Rapids “A center of positive, practical Christianity.” 4980 Gordon NE, Cedar Rapids - (319) 393-5422

CLINTON Unitarian Universalist Fellowship of Clinton 309 30th Avenue North, Clinton, IA 52732 (563) 242-4972 - Sunday services at 10:30 (year-round) Where YOUR spiritual and ethical journey is welcome! Rev. Ruby Nancy, minister

Council Bluffs, Omaha (Ne) AIDS Interfaith Network 100 N. 62nd, Omaha, NE Call Br. Wm. Woeger 402-558-3100 Broadway Joe’s 3400 W Broadway, Council Bluffs, IA 51501 712-256-2243 Citizens For Equal Protection 1105 Howard St, Suite #2, Omaha, NE 68102 - 402-398-3027

ACCESSline Page 35 Council Bluffs NOW Write PO Box 3325, Omaha, NE 68103-0325 DC’s Saloon 610 S. 14th St., Omaha, NE Open everyday 2pm-1am, western/levi/leather. 402-344-3103 Front Runners/Front Walkers Walking/jogging club. P.O. Box 4583, Omaha, NE 68104 402-496-3658. GLBT Rainbow Outreach Omaha Serving GLBT community in eastern Nebraska and western Iowa. Excellent message and info. Also office for Imperial court of Nebraska. 1719 Leavenworth St, Omaha, NE - 402-341-0330 Heartland Gay Rodeo Association (HGRA) (Midwest Division of the International Gay Rodeo Association) PO Box 3354, Omaha, NE 68103 - 402-203-4680 HGRA serves both Iowa and Nebraska Imperial Court of Nebraska P.O. Box 3772, Omaha, NE 68103 402-556-9907 Inclusive Life “Religious and Non religious care, services and ceremonies for all!”, 105 S. 49 Street, Suite E, Omaha, NE 68132, (402) 575-7006, http:// The Max 1417 Jackson at 15th, Omaha, NE 68102 6 bars in 1 - 402-346-4110 MCC Omaha 819 South 22nd, Omaha, NE 68103 Sun 9 & 11 am Wednesday “ReCharge” Worship, Wed 7pm 402-345-2563 PFLAG Omaha Mead Hall, First United Methodist Church 7020 Cass St. (Omaha) 2nd Thursday, 7, 6:30 Social time 402-291-6781 River City Mixed Chorus Gay/lesbian chorus PO Box 3267 Omaha, NE 68103 Call Stan Brown, marketing 402-341-7464. Romantix Council Bluffs (North) (Adult Emporium) 3216 1st Ave, Council Bluffs, IA  51501-3353 515-955-9756 Tri-ess Chapter, Kappa Phi Lambda Chapter Omaha, NE 68107 We are a transgendered organization supporting crossdressers, their families, and friends., 402-960-9696 E-mail: Judy Romantix Council Bluffs (South) (Romantix After Dark) 50662 189th St, Council Bluffs, IA 51503 712-366-1764 Youth Support Group for GLBT Youth 13-21, meets twice monthly. Omaha, NE - 402-291- 6781

Decorah Decorah Human Rights Commission Contact: City Clerk 400 Clairborne Dr, Decorah 563-382-3651 Meetings: First Tuesdays, 5:30pm Luther College Student Congregation Contact Office for College Ministry 700 College Dr, Decorah, IA 52101 563-387-1040. PFLAG Northeast IA (Waukon/Decorah) Beginning May 23rd: meeting at Northeast Iowa Peace and Justice Center, 119 Winnebago Street, Decorah, IA (lower level), corner of Winnebago and Main Street Meetings: 4th Mondays, 7pm-9pm Call Jean @ 563-535-7680 PRIDE Luther College Diversity Center, 700 College Dr, Decorah, IA 52101 Contact Chris at 563-387-2145 or Melanie at 563-387-1273 Unitarian Universalist Fellowship Meets alternating Sundays at 10:30am, Decorah Senior Center 806 River St Call Bill at 563-382-3458.

Des Moines AIDS Project of Central Iowa Free HIV testing, prevention supplies, care services, food pantry, information. 711 E. 2nd, Des Moines, IA 50309 515-284-0245 Blazing Saddle 416 E 5th St, Des Moines, IA - 515-246-1299 Buddies Corral 418 E 5th St, Des Moines, IA - 515-244-7140

ACCESSline Page 36 The CENTER 1300 Locust The new LGBT and progressive place to be. Facebook: The CENTER & Equality Iowa 515-243-0313 Church of the Holy Spirit-MCC Pastor Pat Esperanza Sunday service 10:30am at the 1st Christian Church 2500 University, Des Moines 515-287-9787 Des Moines Diversity Chorus [A gay-friendly mixed chorus] Rehearsals on Mondays at 7 p.m. at Westminster Presbyterian Church, Beaver Ave. at Franklin St., Des Moines. All are welcome, no auditions. PO Box 65312, West Des moines, IA 50265 Julie Murphy, Artistic Director, 515-255-3576, Des Moines Gay Men’s Chorus 515-953-1540 4126 Ingersoll Ave., Des Moines Family Practice Center Safe, supportive LGBT health care. 200 Army Post Road, Ste 26 515-953-7560 First Friday Breakfast Club Educational breakfast club for gay/bisexual men. Meets first Friday of each month. Contact Jonathan Wilson for meeting topic and place. 515-288-2500 First Unitarian Church 1800 Bell Avenue Services Sundays at 9:30 & 11am 515-244-8603, The Gallery (adult store) 1000 Cherry St Des Moines, IA 50309-4227 (515) 244-2916 Open 24 Hours The Garden 112 SE 4th Des Moines, IA 515-243-3965 Wed-Sun. 8pm-2am Gay & Lesbian AA & AI-Anonymous Mon. 7 pm; Tues. - Thurs. 6 pm; Sat. 5:30 pm at Drake Ministries in Ed. Bldg. 28th & University Gay and Lesbian Issues Committee 4211 Grand Avenue, Level-3 Des Moines, IA 50312 515-277-1117 Java Joe’s Gay friendly 214 4th St. , 515-288-5282, Lavender Victory Fund Financial assistance for women in need for medical emergencies. Le Boi Bar 508 Indianola Rd, Des Moines, IA Liberty Gifts 333 E. Grand Ave., Loft 105, Des Moines, IA Gay owned specialty clothing, jewelry, home decor. 515-508-0825 MINX Show Palace 1510 NE Broadway, Des Moines, IA 50313 Open m-th noon-2 a.m., f noon-3 am., sat 3 p.m.-e a.m. 515-266-2744 North Star Gay Rodeo Association of IGRA, Iowa Division of North Star or 612-82-RODEO Rainbow Union, Drake University Ray Perry Law Firm 515-279-2244 Free Initial Consultation PFLAG Des Moines 515-243-0313, 1300 Locust , Des Moines, IA 50312 Plymouth Congregational UCC Church and the Plymouth GLBT Community 4126 Ingersoll Ave. 515-255-3149 Services at 9am & I lam Sunday. Polk County Health Department Free STD, HIV, and Hepatitis B & C testing. HIV. Rapid testing also offered. 1907 Carpenter, Des Moines, IA 515-286-3798. Pride Alliance, AIB College of Business Gay and straight students celebrating diversity Contact: Mike Smith, Advisor Pride Bowling League for GLBT & Supporters Every Wednesday, 7 PM, Air Lanes Bowling Center 4200 Fleur Drive, Des Moines, IA 503212389. Email or 515-447-2977. Raccoon River Resort Accommodations for men, women, or mixed in campgrounds, lodge, Teepees or Treehouses. Reservations: 515-996-2829 or 515-279-7312

Section 3: Community Ritual Café On 13th between Grand and Locust. Gay owned great music, awesome food and coffee. 515-288-4872 - Romantix North Des Moines Iowa (Bachelor’s Library) 2020 E Euclid Ave, Des Moines, IA 50317 515-266-7992 Spouses of Lesbians & Gays Support group for spouses of gays and lesbians. 515-277-7754 St. John’s Lutheran Church 600 6th Ave “A Church for All People.” Services Sat 5pm, Sun 7:45, 8:45 & 11am. See web page for other services. 515-243-7691 - TransformationsIOWA Monthly meetings for the female to male, male to female, transgender community, cross dressers, gender queer, questioning, and their significant others. For location and info, email at or call 515-979-6959 Trinity United Methodist Church 1548 Eighth Street - 515-288-4056 Services Sundays at 10am, Urbandale UCC An open & affirming congregation. 3530 70th St., Urbandale, IA 50322 515-276-0625, Walnut Hills UMC Join us at 8:30 or 10:45am for Sunday worship. Sunday classes and group studies are at 9:30am. 515-270-9226 12321 Hickman Rd, Urbandale, IA 50323 Westminster Presbyterian Church 4114 Allison Ave - Sunday services 8:45 and 11am. Of note is their GAY-LESBIAN-STRAIGHT AFFIRMATION GROUP, GLSA 515-274-1534 Women’s Culture Collective (WCC) A lesbian social group. Des Moines, IA - Zanzibar’s Coffee Adventure Open daily. Gay-friendly 2723 Ingersoll, Des Moines, IA 515-244-7694

Dubuque Adult Warehouse 975 Jackson St., Dubuque, IA 563-588-9184. Dubuque Friends Worship Group (Quakers) Join us at an unprogrammed worship service on Sunday at 10am. Welcoming and Affirming St. Mark’s Community Center 1201 White Street, Dubuque, Iowa 52001 563-582-9388 PFLAG Dubuque/Tri-State Carnegie Stout Library 3rd Floor Conference Room 360 W. 11th St. 3rd Tuesday, 7pm 563-581-4606 Unitarian Universalist Fellowship of Dubuque 1699 Iowa St., Dubuque, IA “The uncommon denomination.” general services at 10am. 563-583-9910

ELKADER Bethany Church (ELCA) 307 3rd St NE, Elkader IA 52043 Pastor Jim Klosterboer 563-245-1856 Inclusive. Welcoming. Discover the Difference. Bethany is a Reconciling in Christ congregation of LC/NA Schera’s Restaurant and Bar 107 S Main St, Elkader, IA 52043 563-245-1992 E-mail: Fine dining featuring Algerian & American Cuisine. Voted Best Mediterranean Restaurant in Eastern Iowa on KCRG TV-9’s A*List.

Fort Dodge Romantix Fort Dodge (Mini Cinema) Sun-Thu 10am-12am, Fri & Sat 10am-2am 515-955-9756 15 N. 5th St, Fort Dodge, IA 50501-3801

Grinnell Saints Ephrem & Macrina Orthodox Mission. Welcoming worship in the Eastern Christian liturgical tradition. Sunday services at 10am. (Affiliated with the OrthodoxCatholic Church of America.) Divine Liturgy is served Sundays during the College academic year 1:30 p.m., Herrick Chapel, Grinnell College Campus 1226 Broad Street, Grinnell, IA 641-236-0936

Stonewall Resource Center Open 4:30pm to 11:30pm, Sun through Thurs and by Appointment. Grinnell College 1210 Park Street PO Box B-1, Grinnell, IA, 50112 641-269-3327

INDIANOLA Crossroads United Church of Christ (UCC) An Open & affirming congregation. Services: Sunday 10:30am, Summer worship: June, July, Aug, @ 9:30 am, worshiping in the Lounge at Smith Chapel, Simpson College, corner of Buxton and Clinton. Mailing address: P.O. Box 811, Indianola, IA 50125 515-961-9370.

Iowa City AA (GLBT) 319-338-9111 Meetings Sundays 5 - 6pm at First Baptist Church, 500 North Clinton Street. For more info, call IC Intergroup Answering Service, Congregational Church UCC An Open and Affirming Congregation Sunday Worship 10:15 a.m. 30 N. Clinton St. (across from Ul Pentacrest) 319-337-4301 - Counseling Clinic 319-354-6238 Lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender sensitive and supportive counseling for individuals, couples, families and groups. Sliding Fee. 505 E Washington St., Iowa City, IA 52240 Counseling and Health Center 319-337-1679 Client-centered therapy. Les-Bi-Gay-Trans always welcome. 616 Bloomington St, Iowa City, IA Crisis Center 319-351-0140 1121 Gilbert Court, Iowa City, 52240 Emma Goldman Clinic 227 N. Dubuque St, Iowa City, IA 52245 319-337-2111or 1-800-848-7684. Faith United Church of Christ 1609 De Forest Street, Iowa City, IA Services Sundays at 9:30am 319-338-5238 GLBTAU-U of lA Student support system and resource center, info, activism, events, and other community involvements. 203 IMU, University of IA Iowa City, IA 52242-1317 319-335-3251 (voice mail) Hope United Methodist Church Worship Service at 9:30am. 2929 E. Court St., Iowa City, IA Contact Rev. Sherry Lohman. 319-338-9865 Human Rights Commission (City of Iowa City Human Rights Commission) 319-356-5022; 391-356-5015; 319-356-5014 Fax 319-887-6213 ICARE (Iowa Center for AIDS Resources & Education) Practical & emotional support, youth programs, information, referrals and support groups. 3211 E 1st Iowa City, IA 52240-4703 319-338-2135 Iowa City Free Medical Clinic Free & strictly confidential HIV Testing. 2440 Towncrest Dr Iowa City, Call for appointment 319-337-4459 Iowa City NOW PO Box 2944, Iowa City, IA 52244 for information & meeting times/places Iowa Women’s Music Festival P.O. Box 3411, Iowa City, IA 52244 319-335-1486 Men Supporting Men 319-356-6038, Ext 2 HIV prevention program exploring issues that gay/bisexual men deal with on a daily basis. Discussion Groups, Educational Series, Safer Sex Workshops, Book Club. Contact Andy Weigel, email: New Song Episcopal Church 912 20th Ave, Coralville, IA Sunday services at 10am. Rev. Elizabeth Coulter, Pastor Rev. John Harper, Associate. 319-351-3577 Pride Committee WRAC 130 N. Madison, Iowa City, IA 52242 Bridget Malone - 319-338-0512 Charles Howes - 319-335-1486. Romantix Iowa City (Pleasure Palace I) 315 Kirkwood Ave, Iowa City, IA 52240-4722 319-351-9444

Unitarian Universalist Society of Iowa City Inclusive and free religious community nurturing intellectual and spiritual growth and fostering ethical and social responsibility. 10 S. Gilbert, Iowa City, IA Sunday services: 9:30am & 11:15am. 319-337-3443 United Action for Youth (UAY) A GLBTQA youth group providing support and counseling for teenagers and young adults processing sexual identity issues. Meets Mondays 7-9pm at UAY 410 Iowa Ave. Iowa City, IA 319-338-7518 or Teen Line, 319-338-0559. The Ursine Group Bear Events in the Midwest. PO Box 1143, Iowa City, IA 52244-1143 319-338-5810 Vortex Gifts 211 E. Washington, downtown Iowa City 319-337-3434 Women’s Resource Action Center (WRAC) Leads & collaborates on projects that serve U of l and the greater community, offers social & support services, including LGBT Coming Out Group. University of Iowa 130 N Madison, Iowa City, IA 52242 319-335-1486

Marshalltown Adult Odyssey (Adult Video Store) 907 Iowa Ave E - 641-752-6550 Domestic Violence Alternatives/ Sexual Assault Center, Inc., 132 W Main St. 24 hour Crisis Line: 641-753-3513 or (instate only) 800-779-3512

MASON CITY Cerro Gordo County Dept. of Public Health 22 N. Georgia Ave, Ste 300 Mason City, IA 50401. Free confidential AIDS testing. 641-421-9321 PFLAG North Iowa Chapter 641-583-2848,, Carlos O’Kelly’s Mexican Cafe @ 7 p.m. Wed.

Mount Vernon Alliance Cornell College 810 Commons Cir # 2035

Pella Common Ground (Central College) Support group for GLBT students and allies. Contact: Brandyn Woodard, Director of Intercultural Life 641-628-5134

Quad Cities AIDS Project Quad Cities Info, education & support. Davenport, IA 52804, 319-762-LIFE Augie’s Tap 313 20th St, Rock Island (IL) Noon - 3am daily. 309-788-7389 Black Hawk College Unity Alliance Serving GLBT community at Black Hawk College. 6600 34th Ave, Rock Island, IL 309-716-0542. Connections Nightclub 563-322-1121 822 W 2nd St, Davenport, IA 52802 DeLaCerda House 309-786-7386 Provides housing & supportive services, advocacy and referrals for people living with HIV/ AIDS. P.O. Box 4551, Rock Island, Il. 61201 Good Samaritan Free Clinic 602 35th Avenue Moline, IL 309-797-4688 - Provides free primary medical care to patients age 16-64 who are working but have no medical insurance. Patients are seen by volunteer physicians, nurss practicioners, and physician assistants. The Hole-In-The-Wall 309-289-2375 A Private Membership Men’s Club Located 3 miles east of Galesburg, IL just north of I-74 at Exit 51 Holy Spirit Catholic Faith Community Meets one Sunday per month for Mass at 6:30pm at MCC-QC 3019 N. Harrison St, Davenport, IA Mailing: PO Box 192 East Moline, IL 61244 For more info, call 309-278-3359 Mary’s On 2nd 563-884-8014 832 W. 2nd St. Davenport, IA

Studio 13 13 S. Linn St. (in the Alley) Iowa City, IA Open 7pm ‘til 2am, daily 319-338-7145

MCC Quad Cities - Svcs Sun 11am, Bible study Wed 7pm 563-324-8281 3019 N Harrison, Davenport, IA 52803

U of I Lesbian, Gay & Bisexual Staff & Faculty Association c/o WRAC, 130 N Madison, Iowa City, IA 52242, 19-335-1486

Men’s Coming Out/Being Out Group Meets 2nd & 4th Thursdays, 7pm. 309-786-2580

OCTOBER 2011 PFLAG Quad Cities 563-285-4173 Eldridge United Methodist Church 604 S.2nd St., Eldridge 1st Monday, 6:30 pm Prism (Augustana College) 309-794-7406 Augustana Gay-Straight Alliance Augustana Library 639 38th St, Rock Island, IL Contact Tom Bengston Quad Citians Affirming Diversity (QCAD) Social & support groups for lesbian, bi, and gay teens, adults, friends & families; newsletter. 309-786-2580 - Community Center located at 1608 2nd Ave, Rock Island. Quad Cities Pride Chorus At the MCC Church in D’port, 7pm Wed. Call Don at 563-324-0215 Rainbow Gifts 309-764-0559 T.R. Video Adult books & video 3727 Hickory Grove Rd, Davenport, IA 563-386-7914 Unitarian Universalist Congregation of the Quad Cities, Rev Jay Wolin Sunday Service 11am 3707 Eastern Avenue, Davenport, IA 52807 563-359-0816 Venus News (Adult) 902 W 3rd St, Davenport, IA 563-322-7576

Red Oak First Congregational United Church of Christ 608 E Reed St, Red Oak, IA 51566 (712) 623-2794 Rev. Elizabeth Dilley, Pastor Open and affirming.

SHENANDOAH PFLAG Shenandoah 712-899-2743

Sioux City Am. Business & Professional Guild. Gay Businessmen. Meets last Sat. of the month; ABPG P. O. BOX 72, Sioux City, 51102 Grace United Methodist Church 1735 Morningside Avenue 712-276-3452. Jones Street Station (Bar) 712-258-6922 412 Jones St. Nightly 6:00pm to 2:00am. Mayflower Congregational Church. 1407 West 18th Street Call 712-258-8278. Morningside College Lesbian/Gay/Bisexual Alliance 712-274-5208 Contact Professor Gail Dooley, Advisor Morningside College GSA 1501 Morningside Ave. Sioux City, IA 51106-1717 PFLAG Siouxland PO Box 1311, Sioux City, IA 51102 Romantix Sioux City 712-277-8566 (Adult Emporium) 511 Pearl St, Sioux City, IA 51101-1217 St. Thomas Episcopal Church Service Sun 10:30am 406 12th St, Waverly, IA Rev Mary Christopher 712-258-0141 Western Iowa Tech. GSA for info. Zaner’s Bar 712-277-9575 3103 N Hwy 75, Sioux City, IA 51105 Monthly drag shows & events; hometown bar for Imperial Court of Iowa’s Western Chapter

Waverly Cedar Valley Episcopal Campus Ministry. 717 W. Bremer, (St. Andrew’s Episcopal) Waverly, IA 319-415-5747 Gay, Lesbian Bisexual Student Alliance Wartburg College, Waverly, IA 50677 Contact Susan Vallem 319-352-8250 St. Andrew’s Episcopal Church 717 W. Bremer We welcome all to worship with us on Sunday at 10:30am. Bible discussion Wed. 6:45pm Rev. Maureen Doherty, Pastor 319-352-1489


Section 3: Community

ACCESSline Page 37

Ask Lambda Legal: Faith-Based Foster Care Agencies Dear Ask Lambda Legal, My partner and I live in Illinois and are in a civil union. We are thinking about becoming foster parents, but have heard about problems with certain child welfare agencies. Should we be concerned? Congratulations! 2011 saw advances for same-sex couples in Illinois, as well as in New York, Hawaii, Delaware and Rhode Island. Marriage equality prevailed in New York, while civil unions were signed into law in the other four states—each new law provides hundreds of rights and responsibilities for same-sex couples. For those of you who are hoping to raise children, these laws can provide important legal protections as your family grows. Illinois has recently received national attention because of a case brought by Catholic Charities, a faith-based social service organization which, until recently, received state funds to provide foster care and adoption services for children. When the civil union law went into effect, Catholic Charities asserted that, on religious grounds, it would not provide foster care placement services to couples in civil unions, or to other unmarried or same-sex couples. State and federal law prohibits an organization that receives government funds and contracts to provide government services from using religious beliefs to dictate to whom it will provide those services. Illinois rightly declined to provide tax dollars to an agency that denies loving homes to children in government foster care based on the agency’s discriminatory policies. An Illinois court upheld the government’s decision, in a case in which Lambda

Legal and child welfare organizations filed a friend-of-the-court brief. In recent years, Catholic Charities agencies in Boston and the District of Columbia decided to stop providing foster care and adoption services rather than comply with nondiscrimination laws and professional child welfare standards by making placements with same-sex couples. However, these examples were the exception, not the rule. Most social service agencies—whether faith-based or not—in states that accord legal recognition to same-sex couples’ relationships, follow state non-discrimination requirements. When the state removes children from their original homes and places them in foster care, it’s often because of situations involving abuse or neglect. These children can then languish for years in state care, in group or foster homes. The overwhelming consensus among social science and child welfare experts is that lesbian and gay adults make fit parents and are an important resource for children in foster care. When an agency charged with finding children stable homes shrinks the pool of prospective foster and adoptive parents based on false beliefs that same-sex couples aren’t good parents, it does unnecessary harm to these children. It also sends a dangerous, stigmatizing message to the many LGBT young people in foster care, that these youth will never be fit to parent children of their own. Children in the foster care system deserve every chance of finding stable, loving homes. In Illinois, and across the country, a number of social service agencies have a

history of working with same-sex couples looking to become foster parents. Susan Sommer is Senior Counsel and Director of Constitutional Litigation for Lambda Legal, the oldest and largest national legal organization committed to achieving full recognition of the civil rights of lesbians, gay men, bisexuals, transgender people and people with HIV. Sommer handles groundbreaking litigation and also oversees the work of several attorneys in all areas of Lambda Legal’s work, including fighting for equal recognition of same-sex relationships, fighting for the rights of lesbian and gay parents and battling antigay discrimination in employment, housing, public accommodations and law enforcement. Sommer is the director of Lambda Legal’s Youth in Out-of-Home Care Project, which aims to ensure that LGBT youth in foster care are safe and supported. She leads a historic joint partnership between Lambda Legal and the Child Welfare League of America that will make LGBT youth a clear priority for state and local children’s agencies around the country. Sommer was the lead attorney on Lambda Legal’s lawsuit that convinced the Arkansas Supreme Court to strike down the state’s antigay sodomy law and clearly identify a right to privacy in the state’s Constitution for the first time. She played a key role in Lawrence v. Texas, Lambda Legal’s landmark U.S. Supreme Court case that struck down Texas’ “Homosexual Conduct” law. A seasoned litigator, Sommer came to Lambda Legal from Lankler Siffert & Wohl in New York, where she specialized in commer-

Susan Sommer, Director of Constitutional Litigation cial, securities, antitrust, not-for-profit federal and state civil litigation, white collar criminal defense, and regulatory and attorney disciplinary proceedings. Earlier, Sommer taught at Brooklyn Law School and was a litigation associate at Davis Polk & Wardwell. Sommer clerked for U.S. District Court Judge William Schwarzer in the Northern District of California. A 1986 graduate of Yale Law School, Sommer served as notes editor at the Yale Law & Policy Review. She received her bachelor’s degree in American Studies from Yale, graduating Phi Beta Kappa and summa cum laude. If you have a legal question or need legal assistance please visit

ACCESSline Page 38 SScontinued from page 23

PARTYING HARD right into me. I would have bounced off of his thigh like a gummy bear against an oil drum, sent screaming into the air, and discovered hours later lodged several feet inside a ventilation space. Over forty men from Japan to Canada competed for the Mr. Olympia title, their combined weight requiring granite reinforcement beneath the posing stage. There was enough collective body oil used to support the economy of a small, middle-eastern nation. The only things that were not gargantuan in the competition were the bikini briefs, which were actually pieces of Christmas ribbon held on by rubber bands. (Oh, and, the items beneath the Christmas ribbons were also not quite of gargantuan proportion.) All in all it was a fun and enlightening day. I’ll be looking forward to next year when I may just get up onto the flat bench myself and try to press one hundred and eighty pounds so that I can win some whey protein antioxidant volumizing resin-flavored broccoli.

SScontinued from page 29

FFBC place where you’ll be teaching when you leave here, and it’s my job to help you embrace that, even rejoice in it. Dwight C. Watson received his B.A. and M.Ed. in elementary education from the University of South Carolina in Columbia. He received his Ph.D. in curriculum and instruction with a concentration in reading and writing literacy from North Carolina State University in Raleigh. Dr. Watson taught elementary and middle grades for ten years in Raleigh and Sumter. He has taught on the university level for seven years as an assistant and associate professor of education and the Director of Elementary Programs at Campbell University in Buies Creek, North Carolina. Dr. Watson has also been a central office administrator for a large, urban school district and served as the Language Arts Program Director. As Program Director, he supervised the language arts, reading, and writing curriculum and staff development for 64 elementary schools as well as orchestrated programs for Title I and Reading Recovery. Dr. Watson was the Associate Dean of Teacher Education Program and Chair of the Departments of Curriculum and Instruction and Foundations of Education at the University of Wisconsin—Eau Claire. Previous to that he was an associate professor of education at Hamline University in St. Paul. Dr. Watson is now the Dean of the College of Education at the University of Northern Iowa. His current research interests are curriculum integration, children’s literature, and conflict resolution. Dr. Watson conducts numerous local, state, national, and international workshops on his research interests as well as other areas of reading and writing literacy. You can write to him at

Section 3: Community


The Morning After by Robert Hofmann You’ve been there. You wake up in the morning, yawn a bit, stretch a little, and then you feel it.  A warm body next to you in bed, and you don’t remember who he is. I say “warm” body for a reason:  no matter what he looks like this morning, he’s not nearly as hot as he was last night before you got into bed.  You know it. I know it.  Hell, even he knows it..  Now, hopefully, you haven’t made the mistake of bringing him back to your home.  Why, you dare ask?  If you went to his place, you can make a hasty departure: as you fling your clothes back on, just tell him, “I left my dog on and my oven has to be walked first thing this morning.”  No matter that you said it backwards, or that you don’t have either a dog or an oven at your place.  You can get the hell out of there in under 30 seconds.  Trust me.  I know.  Of course, if you took him back to your place, it’s a little more difficult to extricate yourself from the situation.  “Can you leave?”, “I hate to have someone in my apartment while I’m dropping a deuce”, and “I just can’t stand the sight of you”, are a tad on the rude side.  So my number one rule, and yours should be, too, is never take your trick back to your place.  Always go to their place. It’s much easier to flee than it is to kick someone out.  I know.  I can hear some of you saying, “But sometimes we’ve got no place else to go, so I absolutely have to bring him back to my place.”  Yeah, we’ve all been there.  So, what do you do when that happens? You meet a guy at the bar.  He seems into you, and you’re definitely into his stunning blue eyes.  “I’m just in town visiting my family,” he tells you, “and we can’t go back there.”  If and only if you can’t afford a motel, then go to your place.  But when he asks to use your bathroom to take out his contacts, and then returns to your boudoir with brown eyes, it’s going to be hard to hide your disappointment.   So what do you do now?  Those eyes were what attracted you to him in the first place.  It’s almost as bad as a guy stuffing his package.  Well, not that bad, but still.  You’re promised one thing, and you get another; blue eyes exchange for brown, a whopper for a teeny weenie.  I’d rather have the guy fake his eye color.  At least I can turn him over so I don’t have to look him in the brown eyes.  If he fakes the weenie, I’m going to be disappointed, and he’s going to be leaving red-faced when I laugh him out of bed.  Yeah, I’ve been there.  Sue me. And what happens when you get the guy out of the bar lights, back to your place, and you realize he’s not nearly as cute as you thought?  Here’s a tip: shove him face down into the pillow so you don’t have to look at him.  Or how about the guy who extricates himself

from your now-soiled bed (and if you have to ask “soiled with what?”, you’re not following along here) to use the facilities and accidentally leaves his “hair” on your pillow? How do you get rid of these guys?  After you’ve played, do you offer him a gargle?  A toothbrush? At least a mint? And what do you do if he asks you to stay the night?  Do you make pancakes the next morning?  Here’s the rules, and there are only two: 1.  If he is not what you expected (and who is, really?  Okay, Taylor Lautner, but who else?), and not someone you’ll hook up with again (unless you’re really, really drunk), you get off, he gets out.  Simple, clear, concise:  get off, get out.  Just make sure you’re the one who got off, though. There is no Listerine, no Aunt Jemima, not even a single Altoid.  You give him any of those and he’ll be moving his 2xist underwear into your  bedroom by the next weekend.  You can’t have that.  You’ve got new stuffed packages to look for!  So, make something up. Tell him you’ve got to get up early to take your mom to church.  Tell him you have  your cult meeting early  the next

If you went to his place, you can make a hasty departure: as you fling your clothes back on, just tell him, “I left my dog on and my oven has to be walked first thing this morning.”

morning. Tell him your lover’s coming home soon and he can’t stay.  Just get him out of there.  You already got what you wanted.  You got off.  So, lie.  I’m sure you lied to get him into bed, now lie to get him out of it.    2.  If he is hot, let him stay the night.  Make sure you wake up before him, take a shower, fix your hair, do whatever it takes to make yourself look presentable, for God’s sake.  Offer him anything he wants: fresh towels, your side of the bed, fresh squeezed orange juice, homemade crepes.  But when he flings his clothes back on in the morning and tells you he left his dog on and his oven has to be walked, don’t say I didn’t warn you!


Section 3: Community

ACCESSline Page 39

ACCESSline, Iowa's LGBT+ Newspaper, October 2011 Issue, Volume 25 No 10  

ACCESSlineIOWA - Iowa’s LGBT+ Newspaper. John Waters Interview! Gay, lesbian, bisexual, trans, and HIV+ news for Des Moines, Cedar Rapids,...

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