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Pride photos Page 15

Volume 6 Issue 15 July 24 – August 6, 2015

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The many faces of Hal Sparks Morgan M. Hurley | Editor

A breathless Duff


Bad to the bone


Hal Sparks, who has always been open to a QAF reunion, will perform at SDHDF’s Reunion Aug. 8 (Courtesy LEG Management)

Hal Sparks may be best known to the LGBT community for his role as the closeted, pensive, but incredibly likable Michael Novotny in Showtime’s “Queer as Folk” (QAF), which ran from 2000 – 2005; but today, he is just as well known to the young fans of his Disney XD show, “Lab Rats,” where he plays billionaire Donnie Davenport. A comedian and musician at heart, Sparks is probably even more well known for his years juggling historical pop-cultural facts for VH1’s “I love the ’80s,” a show he says regularly draws 90 million viewers compared to QAF’s loyal 25 million at its peak. But on Saturday, Aug. 8, Novotny — er — Sparks will be bringing his chipper comedy, political discourse, maybe some music, and most importantly his bubbly personality and laser sharp perspective to San Diego, where he will perform at San Diego Human Dignity Foundation’s (SDHDF) annual Reunion benefit. Formerly held at private homes in the region, this year’s Reunion will be held at the Sheraton San Diego Hotel and Marina on Harbor Island. The recurring theme for the event is “Our Seniors Matter,” and it will benefit both the SDHDF’s Aging with Dignity initiative and the senior programs of the San Diego LGBT Community Center. “For the fourth year in a row, friends and supporters concerned with the welfare of our LGBT seniors will be gathering for a lawn party to reconnect with one

Imagining 30 years Hot as you like


The San Diego Men’s Chorus celebrates this weekend with a summer concert from the Beatles songbook. (Courtesy SDGMC) Sign yourself up

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By Tom Felkner If you listen carefully through the cacophony of early-evening Hillcrest, you’ll hear them singing: deep, rumbling basses and sweetly soaring tenors moderated by melodically mellow baritones. It’s Monday night and nearly

200 members of the San Diego Gay Men’s Chorus (SDGMC) have gathered at the University Christian Church to rehearse for their upcoming concert, “Imagine: The Music of Lennon & McCartney.” Despite the unseasonably muggy night, not only is vocal exercise on the agenda, but physical exercise as well.

Opening SD Opera’s umbrella New general director discusses plans for upcoming season and beyond By Charlene Baldridge The news is good. At its recent annual meeting San Diego Opera (SDO) announced that it expects to complete fiscal year 2015 (ended June 30) in the black. For an organization that nearly ceased operations prior to the 2015, 50th anniversary season, this is great news.

see Hal, pg 9 Stepping up front is chorus member and choreographer Joe Gregore, who has mastered the art of “choralography,” the synchronized body movements of a full chorus and an SDGMC specialty. Tonight’s challenge is interpreting The Beatles’ “Come Together,” a mix of admittedly bizarre lyrics (“He got joo-joo eyeball … He got monkey finger”) with arm rotations, bendy-body contortions and simplebut-effective foot stomping. “If you’ve ever seen a flash mob, it’s kind of like that, only we are actually singing and moving at the same time,” said Gregore, a second tenor from Hillcrest. “The hardest part is to make it look fun and easy to the audience while really communicating the message of the music. When it all comes together, the energy draws you right up onto the stage!” “Come Together” is just one of the nearly 30 songs from the iconic pages of the John Lennon and Paul McCartney songbook to be presented on July 25 and 26 at the historic Balboa Theatre. The Chorus will cover The Beatles’ hits from hardhitting anthems like “Revolution” and “Get Back” to ballads “Let it Be,” “Hey Jude” and “Yesterday” —

As for FY 2016, Board President Carol Lazier has given another gift of $1 million, and Darlene Shiley has given $250,000 in honor of Jack O’Brien, who stages Jake Heggie’s “Great Scott,” a co-world-premiere with Dallas Opera to be produced here in May. O’Brien is former artistic director of the Old Globe, where Shiley has long been an active supporter. Shiley also donated $250,000 in support of SDO’s 2012 production of Heggie’s “MobyDick.” It was also announced that SDO has received a 4- rating from the San Diego Commission of Arts and Culture, which recommended 2016 funding of $437,356, the largest sum the company will have received from the city since 2009. The other good news is that new General Director David Bennett came aboard June 15. Selected by search committee to replace Ian Campbell, Bennett is a Kansas City native steeped in music since he picked up the violin in fourth grade. A former opera singer whose experience was in standard repertoire in big houses, he comes to SDO from New York,

see SDGMC, pg 11

see Opera, pg 8

David Bennett

(Photo by Jake Heggie)


GAY SAN DIEGO July 24 - Aug 6, 2015

The long, Duff road Hilary Duff on marriage equality, her fascination with Grindr and why she took a break from showbiz Chris Azzopardi | Q Syndicate

INTERVIEW (CA) Considering you’re not feeling well, you probably won’t be celebrating just yet. (HD) Actually, I do have a party happening at my house tonight for my assistant/best friend. We just worked through her birthday during album release week, and I feel so bad, so we’re finally celebrating at my house tonight. But we’ll be celebrating [marriage equality] as well, I’m sure. It definitely deserves a big toast. Do you have a partner? (CA) I don’t have a partner, no. Is being on Tinder key to finding “the one”? Perhaps you can give me some dating advice. What are Hilary Duff’s tips for finding a husband? (HD) [Laughs] Obviously, I haven’t been so lucky. No — I don’t know. I would not, uh — I would not go with me on Tinder. I don’t know! God. Geez. Maybe the right thing will be in the air tonight.

“I’m like the dorky kid on the bus who’s like, ‘Hiiii.’” Wait a minute. Is that you, Lizzie McGuire? Maybe? No. It’s Hilary Duff, razzing on her cold-ridden, Hillary Duff (Photo by Ben Cope) congested-sounding self as she does a nasally nerd impression. And though Duff is known to millennials (and their moms) for originating the dorky Disney icon in 2001 — which, she admits during our interview, has been “torturous” — the 27-year-old is (CA) Lately you’ve been a Tinder enthusiast; have you ready to move on. Actually, she’s been ready. It’s the rest of experienced Grindr? the world that just can’t seem to let Lizzie go. (HD) Well, I haven’t physically actually experienced it, During an insightful and surprisingly candid conversalike I don’t have it on my phone or anything, but it’s basically tion, Duff spoke about her career as a whole just hours the same thing as Tinder, right? I know because my makeup following June 26’s landmark Supreme Court ruling, which artist, who’s one of my best friends, has used Grindr a lot and granted full marriage rights to LGBT Americans. The child he’s told me all about it. I get to hear all the stories. star-turned-music maker also talked about her latest album, “Breathe In. Breathe Out.,” eight years in the making; the (CA) And what are those stories? long break she took to find her true self; and not knowing (HD) [Laughs] I mean, I don’t wanna put him on blast. how to be a “totally normal girl who doesn’t give a fuck.” You know what’s crazy is, I feel like you guys hook up a lot more freely. I don’t know if that’s just me because I’m a little (Chris Azzopardi | CA) You’re a longtime ally of the LGBT more cautious, I guess. I don’t know what it’s like to be a community, and you also have many gay friends, so you must totally normal girl who doesn’t give a fuck about anything. have been thrilled about the Supreme Court ruling on marriage equality. What does that momentous moment mean to you? (CA) Because of your celebrity status? (Hilar y Duff | HD) Oh my gosh. I’m so excited. What a (HD) I think so, yeah. And also, I’m a mom and I’ve albig day. It’s a huge step toward equality. Everyone should be ways been a relationship girl. I’m always surprised when he’s able to be who they are, love who they want and marry who like, “Yeah, I was just in France and I met a dude on Grindr they want. It’s 2015; for us to still have judgment about people and went over to his house,” and like, they got it done. I’m so being gay is ridiculous, so I can’t believe it’s taken this long. fascinated by it. It’s definitely a big day in history, and I’m just so excited. (CA) Are you still on Tinder? (HD) I’m not still using it. It was really fun for me for a minute; I wanted to experience something totally normal and also shock people. No one thought I was really on it — and I was really on it! So I integrated that into my video (for “Sparks”) and showed a side of me that’s really real, really normal. I strive for normalcy in my life every day. (CA) Do your gay friends ever set you up? (HD) Not so much. We go out a lot together, but honestly, when I go out I’m not on the prowl. I just wanna go out and have a good time, and a lot of times I feel like having someone I don’t know around would interfere with that. I only have a certain amount of time to enjoy myself. (CA) What’s a good night for you? (HD) Being with four or five really good friends that all know each other, so we all have a lot in common. Laughing a lot, having a few drinks and maybe dancing a little bit. Having a good meal. A lot of times we go to the Hollywood Bowl — that’s always a good time for me. There’s something about that place that’s magic. (CA) Speaking of venues, will you be touring for this record? It’s been too long. (HD) Yes, I will tour. It took me so long to make my record because it wasn’t where it needed to be. When I started making the record, I wasn’t like, “I have to get it out at this time”; I was like, “It’s gotta be right — after seven years, why be in a rush now?” Halfway through the process of making my record I signed onto the show “Younger” [on TV Land] and that was really good for me because I think it helped get me out of — you know when you just need to shake it up? I was terrified. My son had just started school and obviously I was going through a separation and I was like, “I can’t just up and continue work,” and then I was like, “Actually, I can and I’m going to.” This is a great project, and I love New York and it was really good for me. I put a pause on the record and then came back to it after Christmas; it was a great thing for me. It helped turn the record into a proper direction, so now “Younger” got picked up for a second season. I’ll shoot from September until December and then I’ll tour after Christmas. (CA) A world tour? (HD) I think it’ll be a world tour. I don’t know if I can set it up like how I used to for five months at a time. Obviously my child is my No. 1 priority, but I think I can do a month at a time and then come back and then go back out for a month. And it’ll have to be a world tour because some of my biggest

see Interview, pg 16

GAY SAN DIEGO July 24 - Aug 6, 2015



GAY SAN DIEGO July 24 - Aug 6, 2015


How to raise your self-esteem Quintessential crushes Life Beyond Therapy Michael Kimmel Self-esteem is a phrase that you hear a lot in the media. I’d like to talk a bit about what self-esteem is and how you can improve yours. When I worked for KaiserPermanente Psychiatry and Addiction Medicine, I both founded and facilitated the “Healthy Relationships Support Group.” A key concept of the group was that without healthy self-esteem, a healthy relationship is almost impossible. That said, I invite you to take this self-esteem quiz. Read the following statements and rate them on a scale of 1 (totally true) to 10 (totally false). Answer the questions as you honestly feel today, right now: • I feel positive about myself most of the time. • I believe in myself. • I know that I am a good person. • I have an inner sense of pride. • I take excellent care of myself. • I treat myself as I would a beloved friend. • I deserve great things to happen to me. • I love myself. • I know I am precious, wonderful and truly unique. Done? Good. Take a look at your answers. If most of your answers are between 1 and 3, you have high selfesteem. Put this column down and go share your wonderful self with everybody. If most of your answers are between 4 and 6, your self-esteem is

average. It could use some work, but overall, it’s okay. If most of your answers are between 7 and 10, baby, we gotta talk. Your self-esteem is low and you deserve to feel better. So, what is self-esteem? Re-read the questions; to me, they summarize nine key elements of self-esteem. One of the best ways to increase your self-esteem is to be willing to help yourself. This is not good news for chronic complainers! If you continually see yourself as a victim of unfair circumstances and tell your friends how things suck for you, you probably got a lot of 7s and 8s on the quiz. We need to stop blaming others for our situation if we want to raise our self-esteem. This kind of change is usually uncomfortable at first. For some of us, as our self-esteem rises, we get scared. “It would scare the shit out of me to like myself,” one client told me, “Who would I be then? Would anyone like me?” Ironically, other people usually like us better when we like ourselves. Here are some more specific suggestions for raising your self-esteem: Self-assessment. Ask yourself questions like, “What is it I want?” “What am I afraid of?” “How would my life change if I liked myself more?” Learning more about yourself is a crucial part of improving your self-esteem. Get new information. Reading and listening to books/CDs/MP3s are great ways to allow new information to flow through your subconscious, slowly changing how you feel about yourself. It is especially helpful to listen to them just after you wake up and right before you go to sleep, as

these are times when your subconscious is particularly receptive to new information. Write. Introspection put to paper is usually more powerful than just having thoughts about something. Writing things down makes them more concrete. It’s a great way to learn more about yourself and monitor how your self-esteem improves over time. Changing behavior. Great ideas are nice enough, but you want to gradually change your behaviors to make them real. Insights come, but what do you do with them? Begin to do things differently. Changing your behavior usually happens slowly so don’t give up too soon. One step at a time is a good, sustainable pace. Get support. A good therapist or friend will be able to encourage you, hold you accountable and kick you in the butt when you need it. This stuff is too hard to do alone, get help. “Why bother?” you may ask. “This sounds like a lot of work.” You’re right. It is. But, what’s more important than how you feel about yourself? Raising your self-esteem isn’t selfish, either. When we love ourselves more, we have more to give to others. We are more secure, kind and forgiving when we are strong, centered and full of good feelings for ourselves. You CAN raise your self-esteem. Try these ideas and watch it rise. —Michael Kimmel is a licensed psychotherapist who specializes in helping LGBT clients achieve their goals and deal with anxiety, depression, grief, sexually addictive behavior, coming out, relationship challenges and homophobia. Contact him at 619-955-3311 or visit

Out on the Page Katrina Young “Tell Me Again How a Crush Should Feel” is the charming second novel from Sara Farizan. Leila Azadi is the IranianAmerican protagonist juggling high school, her traditional Iranian family and her maturing sexuality. Leila is “always tr ying to make the pieces fit” like a game of Tetris. This book reads like most young adult stories, with Armstead Academy as the quintessential high school setting; the mean girls, the athletes, the intellectuals, and the often ignored and underestimated protagonist that eventually shocks ever yone. Although the book is predictable at times, that does not take away from the heart of the stor y. It is its predictability that makes it relatable and shows how “normal” LGBT students are with respect to their straight peers whilst still shedding light on issues that are unique to LGBT young adults. Leila is concerned about being ostracized because of her sexuality on top of already feeling like she doesn’t fit in at

school or at home. At school she is not one of the cool kids, she does not have an ounce of athleticism, and academics do not come easy, either. At home she lives under the thumb of her loving yet conser vative parents while also being in the shadow of her perfect, overachieving older sister. In the midst of these struggles, Leila falls hard for new girl Saskia Lansing. We’ve all been through the all-consuming feelings of having a crush — the daydreaming, butterflies in your stomach, awkward stares, and becoming a blubber blubbering mess — and Leila has it bad. Saskia is beautilov ful, smart, fun lovindepen ing, and independent — but a mean girl in disguise — who threatens to turn Leila’s world upside down in the worst way. Saskia is a character that I love to hate. Her questionable integrity is apparent early on but due to the haze of her crush Leila is oblivious to the dangers that come from loving her. A series of humiliating and heart-wrenching events involving Saskia fortunately ends well for Leila. She is propelled towards personal growth and richer relationships with her friends and family despite having her heart broken. Leila learns that the people that love her will love her no matter what her sexuality, even her traditional, Iranian, conser vative father who turns out to be “a teddy bear in a suit.” And of course, in the end Leila realizes the perfect girl for her was part of her life all along. Sara Farizan brings a fresh take to an age-old tale. The stor yline is engaging, honest, modern, and occasionally humorous. Her characters are diverse and fully developed making their lives believable and interesting. “Tell Me Again How a Crush Should Feel” is a good read for young adults and anyone looking for a coming out stor y with a happy ending. —Katrina Young is the treasurer of the Multicultural LGBT Literary Foundation and a lover of LGBT literature. Follow her on Twitter @sapphicreader.t


GAY SAN DIEGO July 24 - Aug 6, 2015

To be LGBTQ, A very wet but very memorable Pride gifted and black … Profiles in Advocacy Ian Morton The 1970 Nina Simone song, “To Be Young, Gifted and Black” was a call to the black community to nurture their youth and help them to achieve their potential. At the intersectionality of the black experience and the LGBTQ experience, we find therein a difficulty in simultaneously celebrating both parts of one’s being. When a person is a minority within a minority, and often asked to choose “which one they are, black or LGBTQ?” where do they go to center and renew their spirit? A growing group of black LGBTQ San Diegans intends to create these spaces through the San Diego Black LGBT Coalition, whose vision is “a united front of black LGBT leaders coming together for the common social, political and economic advancement of black LGBT individuals into a thriving beloved community.” In a climate where the greater LGBTQ community is gaining footholds and victories on a national and international scale, the question may be posed as to whether such efforts are necessary. I recently asked coalition members why, at this moment in time, this was so important, and here is what they had to say and how they selfidentify themselves: Dwayne Crenshaw, “community and social justice advocate”: “Growing up in San Diego’s black community I felt nurtured, protected and supported as an African-American but, as I came to terms with my sexual orientation, I felt alone in the same community, so I moved to Hillcrest. Sadly, in the gay community, I often felt just as alone and like an outsider as a black man. The San Diego Black LGBT Coalition represents the potential for my full identity as a black gay man to be embraced and celebrated, as well as to build a supportive community for all black LGBT individuals in every San Diego neighborhood.” Cr ystal Page, “professional communicator for social and economic justice”: “As a member of the black LGBT community, it is very rare to be in a space with others who share that identity. There are needs our community possesses that have gone unmet and at this moment, when HIV infection rates are high and blacks have been injured or murdered, is a crucial moment for us to come together, build a stronger foundation and infrastructure to advance an agenda that ensures that black LGBT individuals are healthy, safe and successful.” Don Johnson, “open to my highest and greatest good”: “Having arrived San Diego just a year ago, sometimes I marvel at how gorgeous the weather and scenic spaces are, but I seem to be missing the ‘cultural’ diversity. I have found that living as an out, proud, black gay man in Hillcrest renders me virtually invisible. What I seek is a cohesive group of black gays and lesbians in San Diego whose focus extends beyond partying and sex. On the East Coast, I experienced black gay

communities who developed and supported book clubs, investment clubs, discussion groups, a ‘talk show,’ spiritual enrichment groups and a number of other causes and events around which to gather. I have not found these here, but the purpose and mission of the coalition holds the promise to fulfill those interests.” Ebony Mullins, “butter fly for social justice”: “I am a passionate, strong, lover of humanity. As a black LGBT advocate, my hope is that I may shower my love and understanding to the community through standing up with pride for my culture and heritage. I hope that through my involvement with foster families and growth, I may be a beacon of light to those that may have been thrown away.” D. Devereaux: “This is a historical Pride year due to gay marriage being recognized in all 50 states. The San Diego LGBT Black Coalition has been a much-needed organization in San Diego for our voices to be heard and for our visibility to be seen. I’m excited to be connecting with familiar faces and leaders in the community to share, socialize and network as a unit representing African-Americans in a positive constructive forum.” Rickie Brown, “quiet storm for human rights”: “At this moment in time, it is extremely important for our coalition to occupy space in support of the black LGBTQ community. This has been an issue that weighs on the heart of many LGBTQ communities, as the black LGBTQ community has suffered both attacks and the avoidance of recognition for simply being themselves and wanting to have a voice in the greater community. The constant attacks across this nation and growing suicide rate amongst young black LGBTQ people are just two reasons that we have to do something at this time.” Adam Dyer, “author, educator and activist”: “The San Diego Black LGBT Coalition ser ves one of the most important purposes that any group can, in this day and age, addressing intersectionality at some of its most challenging crossroads: race and sexuality. We are committed to ser ving the issues that impact LGBT folks, but also those that impact blacks in San Diego. We will march and be present for marriage equality and Pride, but we will also show up to fight police brutality and wage discrimination. We are no less black, because we are LGBT; we are no less LGBT because we are black.” For more information about the coalition, please send inquiries to SDBlackLGBTCoalition@ —Ian D. Morton is the senior program analyst at San Diego Human Dignity Foundation and produces the Y.E.S. San Diego LGBTQ youth conference. To nominate an individual or nonprofit for this column, please email the information to

Back Out with Benny Benny Cartwright

Rain is not something we think of when we think about the annual San Diego LGBT Pride celebration. In fact, Pride organizers moved San Diego’s Pride events to July many years ago to ensure good weather (among other reasons). In the 19 years I’ve participated in Pride here, never have I seen anything like we witnessed last weekend — a parade drenched by a rainstorm accompanied by thunder and lightning, followed by gray skies and showers all weekend. It was bizarre, it was uncomfortable, it was wet, but the party sure went on! We had a lot to celebrate this past weekend, and it was incredible to watch almost all of the parade contingents carry on — soaking wet — and with smiles on their faces. As I’ve always said, “It never rains on our parade” — and although it may have literally rained, it certainly didn’t dampen any spirits. A huge thanks to all of the San Diego Pride staff and volunteers for carrying on and making this another memorable weekend for all to enjoy! On Friday night of Pride, I had a great time stopping by the Rob Benzon Launch Party to serve as the emcee for the fashion show at the event, presented by Mankind. Because I’ve always been busy participating in other Pride

Friday events like the Stonewall Rally and the Pride of Hillcrest Block Party, I had actually never attended this event — and it was phenomenal. Packed with welldressed people, filled with food, drinks, and entertainment, and a great energy all around. Big thanks to Mankind for asking me to emcee their fashion show, where I had a great time hanging out with the models who were wearing a lot less than the rest of the crowd! And even though Pride is now behind us, there is still so much going on around the community, with some of my favorite summer events on the horizon, including what many in the community refer to as “Pride Lite” — Hillcrest CityFest on Sunday, Aug. 9 from noon to 11 p.m. If you’re new to town or have just never been to CityFest, you’re in for a treat. The daylong event is a massive street party (one of the biggest such events in town), filled with entertainment, vendors, food, drinks, dancing and more. It’s the biggest #SundayFunday of the year and it closes with a massive nighttime dance party under the Hillcrest sign! While there, don’t forget to check out The Center’s #BeTheGeneration booth and get your photo taken! More information about CityFest is at The day before CityFest is the San Diego Human Dignity Foundation’s annual Reunion Party. This classy event scheduled for Saturday, Aug. 8, benefits The Center’s Senior Services and other LGBT senior programs. I had a great time at this event last year,


and can’t wait to participate this year! “Queer as Folk” and “Talk Soup” star Hal Sparks is scheduled to be there, as well (check out Editor Morgan M. Hurley’s interview with him in this week’s issue). More information and tickets to this event are here news-events/reunion-party-2015/. And of course, it’s time to start thinking about the annual AIDS Walk & Run San Diego, scheduled for Sept. 26 (yes, a Saturday!). AIDS Walk is a fun way to get involved and raise critically needed funds to support those living with HIV/AIDS in San Diego County. You can form a team, walk or run as an individual, and do a number of creative things to help raise money for your fundraising goal. In fact, one such fundraiser being organized is by The Center’s Young Professionals Council on Tuesday, Aug. 4 from 6 – 9 p.m. at BabyCakes, called “Bubbles & Cupcakes.” For a suggested donation of $10, guests will be treated to — you guessed it — cupcakes and Champagne, along with great company, prizes and more. The YPC is a great group of up-and-coming leaders who are dedicated to supporting The Center’s programs and services. But everyone (21 and older) is welcome to this event — you don’t need to be young, or even professional for that matter — just show up to have a great time supporting a great cause. Visit for more information. And of course, feel free to support my AIDS Walk San Diego

see Benny, pg 7



GAY SAN DIEGO July 24 - Aug 6, 2015

Letters South Bay Pride support Thank you everyone for showing up and supporting our Dinner/Fundraiser [see “South Bay Alliance: start your Pride celebration early,” Vol. 6, Issue 14]! It was our best yet! All of you rock! —Dae Elliott, via

PrEP talk talk-back PrEP is a welcome tool in the fight against the spread of HIV [see “#100 a pre-Pride PrEP talk,” Vol. 6, Issue 14]. People who continue to drive fear into others need to stop it, because they are not helping the situation. Gay men should be just as free as heterosexual men when engaging in sex. Gay men should not have approach sex as if they are going to fight a war: that’s the fear the AIDS experience has left on the gay community. It is time to fight that fear/culture and I see PrEP as a positive start. —Putt, via


A fairy tale for our time ... and city By David Warmoth Once upon a time, there lived — because corporate influence peddlers are people too — a group of mega-corporations called ALEC. ALEC felt that things would go much better if the people’s representatives didn’t strain their pretty brains and just let ALEC write the laws. So the corporate prison management companies wrote “model legislation” to grease the wheels for state and local government to privatize prisons (sure it costs a little more, but it’s good for corporate profits), and to enhance identification and apprehension — and imprisonment — of undocumented immigrants. Each part of ALEC created model legislation to help their particular interest and as a group, they created legislation to suppress employee pay and rights to organize for benefits because, hey, what corporation doesn’t benefit from employees with nowhere

else to go to make a living. But how to put all these wonderful ideas into actual legislation? What to do with a Congress and all those state legislatures and city councils who think they, not ALEC, should enact legislation? Right on cue, ALEC’s fair y godfather appeared and reminded them that all ALEC had to do was click their heels together three times and … hand out some of what ALEC had lots of and legislators wanted, gifts and money. Bribery is such an ugly word, so let’s just say what ALEC did was to invite legislators they thought amenable, on all-expenses paid junkets to fun places. Food, drink, hotels, temporary companionship, whatever dream a legislator could have could come true. And much like a time-share presentation, all the legislators had to do is meet with the corporate sponsors to hear about the wonders of their model legislation and weigh the various

suggested offers of campaign and/or personal support, if only the legislation became the law of their lands. And, because the people sometimes object to their elected representatives selling out to anti-democratic groups like ALEC, they even came up with model legislation to suppress voting. That way, only the right people get the opportunity to vote for ALEC’s paid and processed legislators. Good for ALEC. Good for ALEC’s legislators. And, good for everyone — except for the people. And it was so … Meanwhile, in the land of San Diego, it came to pass that The Faulconer was elevated to be Mayor of all the land. But things weren’t going well. Sure, The Faulconer was tall and blond and that’s all good, but the people were beginning to notice that he wasn’t listening to anyone other than the Lords of Downtown. And now, things were so bad that his own knights, the Chargers, were likely to bolt to the land of LA. So, The Faulconer thought, “I’ve already demonstrated my contempt for the people who think they deser ve to be paid a living wage. These ALECs

EDITOR Morgan M. Hurley (619) 961-1960

ART DIRECTOR Vincent Meehan (619) 961-1961

PUBLISHER David Mannis (619) 961-1951

CONTRIBUTING EDITORS Ken Williams, x102 Jeremy Ogul, x119

PRODUCTION ARTISTS Todd Kammer, x115 Suzanne Dzialo

CONTRIBUTING WRITERS Chris Azzopardi Charlene Baldridge Benny Cartwright Tom Felkner Michael Kimmel Jeff Praught Frank Sabatini Jr.

SALES & MARKETING DIRECTOR Mike Rosensteel (619) 961-1958

ACCOUNTING Priscilla Umel-Martinez (619) 961-1962

WEB & SOCIAL MEDIA Jen Van Tieghem, x118 COPYEDITOR Dustin Lothspeich

ADVERTISING CONSULTANTS Emily McKay Johnson 619-961-1955 Sloan Gomez, x104 Robert Jones, x113 Andrew Bagley, x106 Lisa Hamel, x107

WEB DESIGN Kim Espinoza OPINIONS/LETTERS: Gay San Diego encourages letters to the editor and guest editorials. Please email either to and include your phone number and address for verification. We reserve the right to edit letters for brevity and accuracy. Letters and guest editorials do not necessarily reflect the views of the publisher or staff.

seem to be just what I need.” He invited ALEC to bring their show to the land of San Diego. “Surely there’s something they want in such a glorious land, and, if they built me a stadium in return, maybe my Chargers will stay.” But the people of San Diego had other ideas. It came to pass that a leader came from amongst them. [David of Alvarez], [The Speaker of Atkins], [Marty of Block], [Todd the Glorious] — (how many fairy tales let you pick your own hero?) stepped up and took the Mayorship from The Faulconer, who was sent back to his beach adjacent estates and was never heard from again. ALEC was banished from the land of San Diego and everyone lived happily ever after. —David Warmoth is the president of San Diego Democrats for Equality, one of the largest Democratic clubs in Southern California. The club has a rich history that closely mirrors the progression of the national struggle for LGBT rights. It remains one of the oldest, active LGBT organizations in the U.S. For more information about the San Diego Democrats for Equality, visit

This article has left me hugely perplexed. I have been living this virus for 30 years and have never seen this “fear and sigma and homophobia” that has kept gay men from having sex. I have had more then 1,000 sexual partners and remain HIV-free because I took the personal responsibility for my own health by going low tech and slapping a goddamn rubber on it when pok’en in the butt. By “living this virus,” I meant as a community member. Just because I do not have it does not mean, as a gay man, HIV/AIDS has not affected me. HIV/AIDS “is” part of gay reality and we all live “this” virus, not just those living “with” the virus. I demand proper disclosure. Is this dude being paid by Gilead? By the way, Rick never said if he is using condoms (as recommended by the manufacturer of Truvada). —Kevin McCarthy, via and emailt

HIV Resources San Diego: compiled by The Center • HIV/AIDS primary care specialists can be found at Family Health Center, UC San Diego Owen Clinic, North County Health Services and other locations. • Case management can be provided by San Diego Health and Human Services Agency others. • Food resources are provided by Being Alive, CalFresh, Mama’s Kitchen and more. • Housing is offered by Being Alive, Richard’s Place, The Center and more. • Women’s resources are provided by Christie’s Place and UCSD Mother-ChildAdolescent HIV Program. • Free dental care via the Ryan White Program is also available. Find the full listings at

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GAY NEWS BRIEFS CAL GUARD ISSUES STATEMENT ON TRANS SERVICE On July 17, the Adjutant General for California, Major General David S. Baldwin, issued a statement in support of the Pentagon’s recent announcement that they will be conducting a six-month study on how to end the ban on transgender service in the armed forces. The Cal Guard has been actively recruiting LGB members since the end of “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” in 2011 and Baldwin has been an outspoken supporter of that recruitment since 2013. “Gender identity should have no bearing on an individual’s ability to serve California and the nation,” Baldwin stated in a press release after the Pentagon’s announcement. “In California we have allowed transgender individuals to serve openly in our State Military Reserve for some time, without adverse impact to military capability and readiness. We look forward to implementing any new policy that would allow transgender members to serve in combat roles.” The California State Military Reserve, the statesanctioned volunteer force responsible for state emergencies in support of the state’s National Guard — or in its place when it has been federalized or not otherwise available — has allowed transgender members into its ranks since 2014, under Baldwin’s direction. For more information on the Guard’s support of transgender service, visit

HRC SAN DIEGO GALA TICKETS ON SALE Since 1980, the Human Rights

Campaign (HRC) has lobbied Congress, supported political candidates and worked to educate the public on various topics affecting lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender Americans. It has established a well-respected public policy standard that most companies strive to adhere to. The San Diego Chapter of HRC is a group of local leaders who play an active role in the organization through events, education, political involvement and outreach. This year marks HRC San Diego’s fourth annual gala dinner and auction, which will take place Aug. 22, beginning at 5 p.m. at the Grand Hyatt, 1 Market Place, Downtown. Local technology giant Qualcomm will be awarded the HRC Corporate Equality Award at this event and will be recognized for their commitment to diversity and inclusiveness. Many of San Diego’s most influential citizens are expected to gather to celebrate the advances HRC has made in the last year helping the LGBT community to achieve equality. Attendees will enjoy dinner, drinks, live entertainment featuring David Hernandez, a silent auction, awards and more. Tickets begin at $125, VIP at $215. Table captains, corporate sponsor and volunteer opportunities are still available. For more information, visit

LGBT WEDDING EXPO ANNOUNCED On the heels of the Supreme Court’s monumental decision to make same-sex marriage the law of the land, a LGBT wedding and honeymoon expo is planned for Aug. 16, 11:30 – 4 p.m. at the San Diego Marriott Marquis and Marina, located at 333 W. Harbor Drive, Downtown. The Pride Guides California, a travel, wedding and business resource for

LGBT Californians, is presenting the expo, and stated in a press release that LGBT weddings are predicted to add $21 billion to the current $70 billion industry. “We have found an amazing amount of LGBT friendly wedding service providers who really want to serve our community but did not have a source to reach out to the LGBT community,” stated Michael McFall, publisher of Pride Guide California, in the release. “We are the engine to help these providers reach the market in print, online and now with our expo.” Those who wish to get married “on site” will have the option through “Pop Up Weddings” sponsored by the organizer. In addition, attendees will have the opportunity for giveaways, raffles, live entertainment, cash bars, a cake dive, a bouquet toss, and more. Tickets are $5 online or $10 at the door. Dozens of exhibitors have already signed up but sponsorship and vendor opportunities are still available. For more information, visit, email or call 602-466-2501.

SDGMC LAUNCHES HALL OF FAME To help commemorate its 30th anniversary, the San Diego Men’s Chorus (SDGMC) has launched its very own Hall of Fame. Inaugural honorees will be celebrated at their concert, “Imagine: The Music of Lennon and McCartney,” July 25 and 26, at the historic Balboa Theatre. Nominees were initially put forth by chorus members, chorus alumni, SDGMC community supporters and other local arts leaders, and then reviewed by a panel of long-term chorus members. “The honorees have all made an incredible difference in the history of the chorus,” said

GAY SAN DIEGO July 24 - Aug 6, 2015 David Pierce, board vice president and chair of the selection committee. “I know first-hand how much each of them has contributed to the success of the chorus.” Pierce has been with the chorus since 1988. Inaugural inductees include: former artistic director Christopher Allen; former chorus member and choreographer James A. Ellzy II; former artistic director Gary Holt; SDGMC’s longest-term singer and founding member Greg Stubblefield; former chorus member and accompanist Glenn Ward; and longtime advertising and community supporter, Flicks Bar. Future inductions will also take place during the chorus’ summer concerts. SDGMC first assembled in 1985 and 30 years later — 200 members strong — is one of the largest gay choruses in the world. Tickets for their summer concert “Imagine: The Music of Lennon and McCartney” are available at Balboa Theater is located at 868 Fourth Ave., Downtown.

PARK & REC TO CONTINUE MAMA’S WINE EVENT The new Park & Rec bar in University Heights will be hosting Mama’s Kitchen’s 20th annual wine tasting fundraiser, on Aug. 4 from 6 – 9 p.m. Park & Rec, located at 4612 Park Blvd., is home of the former Bourbon Street Bar & Grill, where the fundraiser was held for decades. “Our annual wine tasting event has become one of our signature and more important events,” said Alberto Cortés, executive director of Mama’s Kitchen in a press release. “The event provides a fun and relaxing opportunity for attendees to learn about how we provide life-sustaining nutrition to our neighbors battling AIDS or cancer. We are thankful to

see Briefs, pg 10



BENNY fundraising efforts at aidswalk. Finally, there’s a couple of great ways to honor our community members that I hope you’ll consider taking part in. First, nominations are now open (through July 31) for The Center’s LGBT Veterans Wall of Honor. The wall exists to recognize LGBT veterans with ties to San Diego who have taken the oath to ser ve our countr y and have done so honorably, and with distinction, acting as role models in advancing equality. This year’s inductees will be honored on Nov. 5 at a special ceremony. I hope you’ll consider nominating someone who is fitting for this great honor. Criteria and nomination packet is here programs/lgbt-veterans-wall/ benjamin-f-dillingham-and.html. And of course, it’s Nicky Awards time! Voting is currently open and dozens of great community members are up for awards in over 40 categories. Take a look at the online ballot and cast your vote here This year’s Nicky Awards celebration is Aug. 23. That’s all for this time! Enjoy these (hopefully) relaxing days of summer! —Benny Cartwright is the director of community outreach at the San Diego LGBT Community Center. He can be reached at 619-692-2077 ext. 106 or Byline photo by Rob Lucas Modern Aperture Photography.t



GAY SAN DIEGO July 24 - Aug 6, 2015

O’ woman, what a work of art thou are Theater Review Charlene Baldridge How many goddesses stretch from ancient Rome, Greece and Egypt to Adam’s first wife, Lilith, to Hilary Clinton? Creator/director Javier Velasco and projection designer David Scott set out to show you quite a few in the Moxie Theatre production of “Eternally Bad,” a world premiere musical playing through Aug. 2 at the Rolando-based theater. To assist in enumerating the goddesses and telling their wacky tales (based on the work of comics queen Trina Robbins), Velasco, who co-conceived the musical with Steve Gunderson, enlists “Three Sisters,” sung (music by San Diego jazz artist/composer Candye Kane) and outrageously acted by Devlin, Melissa Fernandes and Rae K. Hendersen. The men they castrate, strip, beat up and dismember are portrayed by hunky Erik Dugan (Adonis), who makes his first San Diego stage ap-


OPERA where he headed the highly successful Gotham Chamber Opera. He was formally introduced at the SDO annual meeting where he received all

pearance here, and the gifted Michael Parrott (Guy). When all these forces sing in harmony (arrangements by Gunderson), it is a wondrous sound. With the exception of Dugan, who displays luscious physical beauty and rudimentary acting skill, all contribute comic chops as well, and Fernandes in particular shows a range of talents that wow even those familiar with her work. We already knew Devlin is capable of evoking tears and laughter. Hendersen’s vocal skills are impressive, too, but she seems most of the time to be at a remove from the material and the audience. Though the dizzying procession of goddesses and situations, performed at high dudgeon, eventually exhausted this onlooker and though the music lacks variety (slightly exacerbated by Gunderson), one is consistently amused by Velasco’s choreography and stage movement and Kate Bishop’s deft and colorful costumes, which morph instantaneously with the addition of a scarf or a shirt. Kristen Flores creates the non-committal scenic design; Jason Bieber, the lighting; and Matt Lescault-Wood, the excellent sound design. It’s not easy the good news along with staff and opera association members. “The city commitment, added to this year’s ‘I Stand for Opera’ crowd-funding campaign, will help realize our fundraising goals,” he said in his office several weeks after taking up residence. “That’s another phenomenal story — people have

“Eternally Bad” Written and directed by Javier Velasco Original songs by Candye Kane Arrangements by Steve Gunderson Thursdays-Sundays through Aug. 2 Moxie Theatre 6663 El Cajon Blvd., Suite N (Rolando)

Erik Duggan and Rae K. Hendersen in “Eternally Bad” at Moxie Theatre (Photo by Daren Scott)

to effectively mike singers in so small a house. Among my favorite numbers were Lilith’s “Who’s on Top?” Jezebel’s “Eternally Bad,” Pele’s “Don’t Mess With Fire,” and Grizzly Woman’s “People Who Eat People.” Parrott lends much hilarity as Ra, the Egyptian sun god, and as a sumo wrestler. Among the other goddesses are Amaterasu, Louhi, Kilinoe, Jezebel, Madari, Kali, Erishkigal, Artemis, Kannaki, Inanna, Uzume, Circe, Isis and Osmotar. And those are just the goddesses. In an interesting sidebar provided by one of the Moxies, I’m told once again said, ‘We want to give gifts of all kinds of sizes to support opera in San Diego.’” Bennett is young, enthusiastic and full of ideas for making SDO stronger. Lest readers have concerns, doing away with performance of standard repertory at the 3,000-seat Civic Theatre is the farthest thing from his mind. He loves the standards, and the idea of producing them fills him with something akin to glee. Be assured there is room for plenty of variety under what he called the umbrella of opera today. “A lot of things can fit underneath it, right?” Bennett said. “Some companies are doing musical theater, chamber opera and concert opera. Zarzuela can fit, and so can operetta. Some people define opera as only works that are fully sung-through without spoken text. When you seek to define what can be under your umbrella, things that fit must be specific to their intended community.” Right now Bennett is exploring the distinct communities of San Diego — Latino, African-American, Asian, and the military — to see how the umbrella might embrace them and allow them to experiment with opera, a mode of presentation they may not have experienced before. He enumerates works that might speak directly to these communities while the interviewer tries to ignore the tantalizing titles scrawled on the big black chalkboard in his office. On the left are tentative future seasons (I’m sworn to secrecy) and on the right a plethora of operas and musicals that are under consideration. “What we want to do is three traditional, large operas and then three recitals in the fall,” he said. “Other things are to be explored — the umbrella of opera in San Diego is going to look a bit different than the umbrella of opera in Philadelphia, and it should because the communities are different. “Contracts are already in place for the next few seasons for traditional opera at the Civic Theatre,” he continued. “Beginning in 2016–17 we’ll start to see those operas spread throughout the year; fall, late winter and spring, interspersed with chamber opera, concert opera, musicals, works of other cultures, opera in

that Velasco first met Kane when he called her to ask permission to use one of her songs in a dance version of “Eternally Bad,” which he did with San Diego Ballet. With Kane he then created a musical based on her life story, titled “The Toughest Girl Alive,” which was later produced by Moxie several years ago. Kane’s only connection to Velasco’s “Eternally Bad” is that she wrote the music. Kudos to Moxie for taking a chance on new work, something it has done throughout its 10-year existence. Creative types — both young and seasoned and male and

Tickets $40 (some discounts apply) 858-598-7620

female — deserve a platform for their work concerning women. In addition to individual producers, “Eternally Bad” is also supported by the San Diego Foundation’s Creative Catalyst Program. —Charlene Baldridge has been writing about the arts since 1979. You can follow her blog at or reach her at charb81@

Greer Grimsley (standing in the 2009 production) will return for the 2015-16 season to sing Scarpia in TOSCA. (Photo by Ken Howard) nontraditional spaces, presentations throughout San Diego County; and co-productions and commissions with other opera companies (and cultural institutions) with an emphasis on American artists. “We hope to make San Diego Opera more in step and responsive, make it the place to be.” Meanwhile, the 2015-16 season (budgeted at around $11 million, same as the last one) comprises three recitals at selected venues and three large-scale works at the Civic Theatre. The latter are Giacomo Puccini’s “Tosca” Feb. 13, 16, 19 and 21 (mat); Puccini’s “Madama Butterfly” April 16, 19, 22, and 24 (mat); and Heggie’s new operatic homage to bel canto opera, “Great Scott,” May 7, 10, 13, and 15 (mat). The three recitals are tenor René

Barbera, Sept. 19 at the Balboa Theatre; soprano Patricia Racette’s “Diva on Detour,” Nov. 14 at the Balboa Theatre; and Italian bass Ferruccio Furlanetto in a concert featuring arias from his favorite SDO performances, March 5, at the Jacobs Music Center — Copley Symphony Hall. Whatever the future holds for SDO, it’s looking good, and you are certain to find something to your liking under David Bennett’s umbrella. For more information or to make your voice heard, visit or phone 619-232-7636. —Charlene Baldridge has been writing about the arts since 1979. You can follow her blog at or reach her at charb81@ t



another and to reconfirm our commitment to ensuring a high quality of life for LGBT seniors here in San Diego County,” said Reunion chair, Joselyn Harris. Though QAF ended its run in 2005, Sparks has remained a steadfast supporter of the LGBTQ community and its quest for equality, lending his name and time to dozens of equality organizations across the country.

faith on their part, it was a great opportunity as a theatrical actor to do some work with depth.” Though his manager and agent treated the role like hazardous material, he said he knew instantly the role was for him. “I said this is amazing; this character [Michael Novotny] is beautiful, and tortured and afraid, and meaningful and all these characters need to be seen,” he said. “It was a good script and it needed to be done. It was that simple.” Sparks said the role passed what he calls his ‘Malkovich test,’ where he asks himself if the work

XD show and the re-release of “Queer as Folk” on Showtime. “I literally have my No. 1 kid show and my No. 1 gay show airing at the same time,” he said, laughing. “Which is an amazing thing and luckily as a stand up, I have a lot more wiggle room as a performer — partly because people understand who I am as a person so any character I play is in the context of that and because I’m a comedian, no matter how hard I work as an actor, I won’t be taken as seriously as an actor as the other people on my shows.” Speaking of stand up, Sparks

SDHDF Board President Drew Liam Jack with Executive Director John Brown at the 2013 Reunion event. QAF broke ground 15 years ago at a time when the country’s mood toward gays and lesbians had continued to regress since the beginning of the Reagan years, and hadn’t yet recovered. There were few if any representations of gay and lesbian relationships on television, and QAF, being on a cable network, had the privilege of delving into taboo topics and even showing skin on skin. Though Billy Cr ystal had ver y successfully played a gay character on the ’70s sitcom “Soap” and had gone on to great success, ver y few actors in gay roles thereafter thrived. “The ’70s were kinder to the LGBT community than the ’80s were and we’re headed in that direction again, quite frankly,” Sparks, a pop culture expert, told Gay San Diego. “The reality of the Carter Administration, had it extended another four years, would have been actually ver y healthy and the early days of the AIDS crisis would have been ver y different than that of the ignorance and bigotr y of the Reagan Administration in the beginning, especially.” In fact the ’80s saw careers put on hold after the 1982 film, “Making Love,” and the extremely popular network TV show “Thirtysomething” had sponsors’ heads rolling after two men were merely shown in bed together in 1989, and nearly a decade later, Ellen DeGeneres’ infamous coming out storyline on her hit TV show “Ellen” got it cancelled in 1997. Three years after Ellen’s fall, Sparks was fresh off of his five years as host of “Talk Soup” and the release of the pot-induced comedy film that later became a cult hit, “Dude, Where’s My Car?” when he was offered the role as Michael Novotny. “As an actor, if you sidestep the sexuality aspect of it, the depth of the work necessary was particularly good for an actor that would have normally been saddled with comedic work,” he said. “So, off you go to a sitcom; you are not a serious actor nor will you be. To me [the QAF offer] was a huge leap of

is valuable and if it is a character that he can contribute to. Once he answered those questions, he said he knew the hardest part was going to be turning in a performance that honored both the script and the character. As a result, he immersed himself into the script and Michael’s psyche, even creating his own backstory for why, with a close community of gay friends and a loving parent — “his mother was a walking PFLAG float,” he said — Michael couldn’t come to terms with being gay. “The reality was, the perception of gay men in particular at that time were that they were all like Brian,” Sparks said. “They were kind of this driven, homosexual ‘borg’ that had no emotions and had sex for sex sake and were just an exemplary of the male sex drive turned on itself; not about feelings, relationships, emotion and depth, because that didn’t exist. “That’s what society used for the longest time to deny the reality of relationship there or the depth of humanity to gay people, was that you’re not even operating from the point of a whole person so why should I treat you like a whole person? It’s easier to keep people in a box that way,” he said. Despite its incredibly successful five-year run and being what he calls “a force multiplier” in the movement forward in LGBT rights, Sparks admits that even QAF left marks — however subtle — on the actors’ records that were hard to polish off. “You can see how it took everybody in the cast almost half a decade to go from a successful show to another project,” he said. “Every other show that has that kind of ratings, show of fandom, every actor — especially the lead ones — would punch forward and get some other project right away. That wasn’t the case. We all started ice-skating up hill as soon as the show was done.” Today Sparks is enjoying his role as Davenport on the Disney

(Courtesy SDHDF)

still hits the road as often possible to put himself in front of a live audience, where he said his act is generally three-quarters improv and based around the audience and its theme. Before swinging into San Diego in August, he will be in San Francisco with John Fugelsang — both recurring cohosts on Stephanie Miller’s Los Angeles-based progressive talk radio show and part of her successful “Sexy Liberal Comedy Show” tour — kibitzing non-PC topics with attendees. “Politics, sex and religion, the three things you are not supposed to discuss at the dinner table and it’s the only thing we talk about,” Sparks said of he and Fugelsang’s show. He has plenty of commentary on the people who refuse to bake cakes or who stand in the way of LGBT rights today, but he said the single most insulting thing that ever happened during the filming of QAF was when HBO pitted “Oz” opposite them in the cable lineup. “They thought, ‘We’ll steal some of the audience, because they have naked men having sex and we have naked men having sex,’” he said. “[But] our characters are having it because they want to — this is consensual sex — it’s the whole fucking point. I remember watching [Oz] and saying, what kind of message are you sending here?” The irony of SDHDF’s event being called Reunion was not lost on him with the recent swirling of rumors regarding a QAF reunion, but there isn’t much to share, just ask his Twitter followers who frequently question him. “Nobody knows,” he said. “The rumors came up because there were a couple of holdouts, people who weren’t on board, and apparently now they are on board so that in and of itself makes everybody think it’s going to happen. It’s really in the network’s hands.” If a reunion were to take place, one thing is for sure; Sparks said the writers will have to make sure that decade is accounted for.

GAY SAN DIEGO July 24 - Aug 6, 2015 “I have about 10 pounds of more muscle on my body than I did with Michael, so I think that Ben is still alive and he and Michael bought a gym since I look so different … then there is the question of would I be nude on TV again, and I’d certainly go even more in that direction, hello.” SDHDF is a philanthropic organization — and the sole community foundation here in San Diego — that funds projects and programs to benefit the region’s LGBT people. It recently launched a new initiative consisting of programs that will bring assistance, education and service to the local LGBT senior population. The Center offers programs that create safe spaces for the “50 or better” members of the local community by offering social services, community activities and access to health care options.


“The Reunion Party has outgrown even the most palatial of homes here in San Diego and so we invite [the community] to enjoy our fourth annual event this year on the Bayside Lawn at The Sheraton San Diego,” said John L. Brown, SDHDF’s executive director. “Relax and enjoy the view and the great food as well as the hosted bar ... and laugh with the rest of us … but most of all, help us to help our LGBT seniors enjoy healthy and meaningful lives.” Reunion will be held on the Bay View Lawn of the Sheraton San Diego Hotel and Marina, located at 1380 Harbor Island Drive, on Saturday, Aug. 8, from 6 – 9 p.m. For tickets or more information, visit —Morgan M. Hurley can be reached at


GAY SAN DIEGO July 24 - Aug 6, 2015


BRIEFS all who attend and support our mission.” This year’s theme is “Which Wine Are You?” which encourages attendees to wear red or white attire to show what wine they are most fond of. In addition to a variety of wine tasting pours passed around throughout the evening, guests will also enjoy a silent auction, live entertainment, the “wine deck” drawing, and the popular wine bottle ring toss game. This year’s presenting sponsor is Impulse, a local chapter of an international organization that works to promote healthier lifestyles for gay men. “We work to promote awareness and education to a new generation of gay men who live in a modern and rapidly evolving world,” said President Martin Molina in the press release. “We admire the work that Mama’s Kitchen has been doing for the HIV/AIDS community in San Diego for the past 25 years.” All proceeds from the annual wine tasting will go directly to Mama’s Kitchen and their daily operations, which prepares and delivers three meals per day to men, women and children affected by HIV/AIDS or cancer, seven days a week at no charge. Presale tickets are $60 and tickets at the door will be $70. For more information, visit

SAN DIEGO TO ARCHIVE LGBT HISTORY The City of San Diego was recently selected for a $30,000 grant from California’s Office of Historic Preservation to complete a “historic context statement” regarding the city’s LGBTQ community, Councilmember Todd Gloria and Lambda Archives of

NEWS / CLASSIFIEDS San Diego has announced. While the “San Diego LGBTQ Historic Context Statement” — which follows a specific format — will provide the city and state with resource information relating to San Diego’s LGBTQ history, it is not meant to be definitive. “This work will help us identify potential historic resources that should be preserved,” Gloria said. “I’m grateful to the state for recognizing this need, city staff for pursuing the funds, and Lambda Archives for advocating so strongly for this needed study.” It will include a broad overview of the growth of the local gay and lesbian community, its politics, identities, related geographic areas and communities. “I am happy and proud that the state is able to help fund this important work,” said State Assembly Speaker Toni Atkins. “No story is complete without settings. This project will help us recognize and forever memorialize the places in San Diego that have played vital roles in the story of the city’s LGBTQ community.” The information collected for the statement will be used for a myriad of purposes, including environmental reviews, land use decisions, educating the public, tourism initiatives, designation of historic districts and as a guide for future studies. “San Diego has a rich LGBTQ history, and efforts must be made to both better document and preserve it,” said Charles Kaminski, board member of Lambda Archives. “I look forward to working with the greater San Diego community to ensure the [statement] examines all meaningful sites in our city.” The grant, which will be accepted by the end of July at the close of Pride month, must be matched with $20,000 of city funds and resources to administer the grant.t

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GAY SAN DIEGO July 24 - Aug 6, 2015


SDGMC in addition to Lennon’s masterfully moving “Imagine.” And in between, the audience will meet their favorite females, “Eleanor Rigby,” “Michelle” and “Lucy in the Sky with Diamonds” whom may or may not be members of “Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band.” At the Chorus helm is a buzzing ball of energy and one of the most acclaimed young artistic directors in the country, RC Haus. With model good looks and natural showmanship, Haus strikes a presence — whether it be in blue jeans and T-shirt at rehearsal or crisp black tux and bowtie on the Balboa Theatre stage — but his main gift is the ability to program music into an emotionally and musically charged show. “We’re remastering this incredible music with a choral rock twist that can only come to life when interpreted by our 180 singers and dancers,” Haus, also of Hillcrest, said. “It will be fun, powerful, beautiful and uplifting — all mixed together with the spark of energy and emotion our audiences have come to love.” During the concert, Haus will also direct SDGMC’s critically acclaimed Chamber Chorale, showcasing their masterwork skills on “Can’t Buy Me Love” and “Ob-LaDi, Ob-La-Da.” Assistant Artistic Director William “BJ” Robinson of North Park leads the multi-talented small ensemble Mood Swings who will sing Lennon and McCartney’s “You Won’t See Me” and “Martha, My Dear.” Also returning will be the San Diego Youth Pride Chorus, San Diego’s only all-inclusive and affirming chorus for lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender youth along with straight and questioning allies. Under the direction of Haus and with support from the San Diego Women’s Chorus, the group — ranging in age from 11 to 22 — will perform “4, 5 Seconds” as recently covered by Rihanna and Kanye West with McCartney. For many singers and fans, the Chorus is a tradition 30 years in the making, as this concert will celebrate the anniversary of its formation in the summer of 1985. It was then that 55 gay men first gathered to form one of the first on-going gay organizations in San

Vancouver, B.C., Canada

• • Aug. 2

Reno, NV

• • Aug. 15 (above) Members of the 2015 chorus lead by RC Haus (foreground) perform a song from “Tyler’s Suite,” a celebration of Tyler Clementi’s life, in May; (left) two members of the San Diego Youth Pride Chorus (Courtesy SDGMC)

Diego. Today with more than 200 members, it is one of the largest gay choruses in the world. Attending that first rehearsal was tall, mustachioed Greg Stubblefield, of University Heights, who is being inducted into the inaugural SDGMC Hall of Fame class at this concert. A baritone, Stubblefield has sung in every concert except one during the preceding 30 years and experienced the generational shifts and cultural changes firsthand and up close. “We helped break doors wide open,” Stubblefield said. “Back then the word ‘gay’ was highly charged. But our presence helped change stereotypes about what being gay meant and helped people understand who we were as a people.” Which, according to SDGMC President Bob Lehman, is exactly the mission of the Chorus and the reason “Imagine” was chosen as the title of this summer’s show. Sitting in a red vinyl chair older

than most of the singers in the rehearsal room, Lehman ruminated about what the founding singers must have thought about and imagined: How they would be received? Were they safe? What could they achieve? Today, those questions have been answered and the history has been written. But what still is to be decided is what happens next. “Just like those singers did 30 years ago, we sing to imagine a better future and to have fun along the way,” said Lehman, a baritone from Bankers Hill. “Nobody does it like we do with a stage packed full of singers, dancers, fun costumes, great production numbers and a little bit of craziness — you name it, we’ve got it!” Tickets range in price from $17 to $70 for preferred seating and are available at or by calling the Balboa Theatre at 619-570-1100. For an additional $35, ticket buyers may enjoy early entry to attend the Director’s Prelude one-hour before curtain and hear firsthand from Artistic Director Haus about the upcoming show. Guests will also receive complimentary hors d’oeuvres and a beverage. This concert’s special outreach partner is Rady Children’s Gender Management Clinic, which has treated more than 80 transgender patients since its opening in 2012. Attendees will learn more about the clinic and have an opportunity to help SDGMC raise funds for them during the concert.

Founding member Greg Stubblefield (top right) came to the first rehearsal in 1985 and remains with the chorus.

(Courtesy SDGMC)

Discounts are available for seniors, students, active-duty military and groups of 10 or more. You can also save processing fees by purchasing your tickets in person at San Diego Theatres Ticketing Services at Third Avenue and B Street across the plaza from the Civic Theatre weekdays, 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. The Balboa Theatre is located at 868 Fourth Ave. adjacent to the Horton Plaza shopping center in Downtown San Diego. Prepaid parking for $10 is available when purchasing tickets or in the theater lobby. —Tom Felkner is a freelance writer and the husband of SDGMC President Bob Lehman. He can be reached at

Chula Vista

• • Sept. 12

Gay Days Vegas • • Sept. 10 – 14

Las Vegas, NV

• • Sept. 18 – 19


• northcountypride. com • Oct. 10

Palm Springs • • Nov. 7 – 8




GAY SAN DIEGO July 24 - Aug 6, 2015

La Jolla around mid-August. Its Fifth Avenue location moves into the modern, 2,500-squarefoot space left vacant earlier this year by Amici’s East Coast Pizzeria. Touted for its chic, cafeteria-style concept, customers can expect a cornucopia of mix-and-match vegetables, brick-oven flat breads, braised meats, and of course, several varieties of gourmet lemonades. 3958 Fifth Ave., After a 38-year run, Great News! Cookware and Cooking School in Pacific Beach will close its doors on July 31. Lauded for its massive line of retail cookware, the store also became home to regular cooking classes headed by popular, local chefs. Its owner, Ron Eisenberg, cites retirement as the primary reason for closing, adding that “I’ve had a great run of business and enjoyed every minute of it.” Until then, the inventory will be sold off at clearance prices. 1788 Garnet Ave., 858-270-1582.

The Red Door strikes a new look (Courtesy PlainClarity Communications)

Several design changes were made at The Red Door in Mission Hills, which recently reopened to unveil a new midcentury, modern look that includes new seating, a fresh paint job and exterior awnings constructed of natural wood. In addition, the front door has been given a new shade of red, and newly planted drought-resistant ivy will soon begin cascading from the roof. At 5:30 p.m., Aug. 5, the restaurant will hold its fourth “Farmers, Friends and Fisherman” series, which allows diners to meet and greet various purveyors contributing to the dinners. For the upcoming four-course meal, guests will be Phil Noble of Sage Mountain Farm; Tim and LaVonna Connelly of Connelly Gardens; Tommy Gomes of Catalina Offshore Products; and brewer Alex Carballo of Urban Street Brewing Company. The cost is $80, which includes beer pairings. Reservations are required. 741 W. Washington St., 619-295-6000. The much-anticipated Lemonade out of Los Angeles will make its San Diego debut in Hillcrest “on or shortly after Aug. 3,” according to a company spokesperson. It will be followed by a second opening in Westfield UTC

Technology and confections combine at the new iDessert by Jean-Philippe in Little Italy, where visitors select from a number of cakes, crusts, sauces, fruits and more at iPad stations for customizing their sweet creations. The colorful shop was launched recently by renowned pastry chef Jean-Philippe Maury, a native of southern France who hails from The Bellagio and ARIA Resort & Casino in Las Vegas. 1608 India St., Suite 104, 619-544-1033.

Liberty Station is making way for a permanent public market (Rendering by FITCH) Some of the vendors planning to take up residence at the upcoming, 22,000-square-foot Liberty Public Market in Liberty Station include Wicked Maine Lobster, Mastiff Sausage, Liberty Meat Shop, Venissimo Cheese, Pho Realz and Fully Loaded Juice. The $3 million

project, headed by Blue Bridge Hospitality, promises an indoor-outdoor “mecca” of 30-plus artisan merchants occupying a circa-1920 warehouse. More vendors will be revealed in the coming months. The market is slated to open in late October. 2816 Historic Decatur Road.

The owner of City Tacos in North Park is taking his passion for south-of-the-border fare another step further with his upcoming Tostadas, due to open by late August in the space that formerly housed Swoon Dessert Bar. “Mexican food is a thing of beauty,” professed Gerry Torres, who also owns IB Street Tacos in Imperial Beach. For his newest venture, look for crafty combinations of seafood, seasonal produce and zippy housemade sauces set atop fresh tortillas. 3139 University Ave. A second and slightly larger location of Lucha Libre Gourmet Taco Shop is about to open “very soon” in North Park in the space where Marie’s Café formerly operated. The offshoot arrives several months later than originally planned. Jose Luis Rojano, who owns the business with his two brothers, said their second venture will be “the same fun and unique concept” as the original shop in Mission Hills. 3016 University Ave., 619-296-8226.

A new cheesecake option: salted caramel (Courtesy The Cheesecake Factory) In honor of National Cheesecake Day on July 30, The Cheesecake Factor y in all locations, including Fashion Valley Mall, is introducing salted caramel cheesecake to its 30-flavor lineup. It joins last year’s addition, lemon meringue, and will stay on the menu for at least a year,

if not permanently, said a company rep. On July 29 and 30, slices on all flavors will be discounted by half price. 7067 Friars Road, 619-683-2800. — Frank Sabatini Jr can be reached at







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GAY SAN DIEGO July 24 - Aug 6, 2015


D E P PUM with s r e p pep (l to r) Boiled dumplings, "local flavor" pork, egg drop soup; (bottom) chicken dried pot (Photos by Frank Sabatini Jr.)

Restaurant Review Frank Sabatini Jr. Our faces grew long when arriving at the doors of Szechuan Mandarin on Mission Gorge Road, an old-school Chinese restaurant that has long quelled our hankerings for zesty pork dumplings and chili-laced stirfries. It was closed for remodeling and still is. So with a maniacal desire to find something similar, we drove north on the street and discovered a more powerful mouth burn at Mr. Spicy in the Village Square plaza. Located toward the back of the complex, we were immediately struck by the highresolution photographs of menu items canvassing its front windows — not the faded, unappetizing kind common to other casual Chinese eateries. These hinted at bright, quality food. Inside, we were greeted by a fast-smiling waitress speaking in limited English. From what we gathered, she co-owns the small, newish restaurant with her husband, who would occasionally shout out to customers with a glint in his eyes while cooking from the semi-open kitchen, “Spicy enough?” In most cases the answer was “yes,” given that few dishes escape the spirited combination of red chili peppers and fresh jalapenos. The pork dumplings we so craved were the first dish we ordered. Unlike their spicy, oiled counterparts at Szechuan Mandarin, these were naked, wetter and tamer, but con-

siderably chubbier from their gingerkissed pork fillings. Better yet, they came 12 to an order. The egg drop soup was expectedly mild, although rosy in color and less plaintasting than others, thanks to juicy bits of tomatoes mingling with carrots, peas and the wispy eggs. We also ordered hot and sour soup, which for once didn’t taste like 80 percent vinegar. The sour component stemmed mainly from generous measures of tender cabbage bobbing within the peppery broth. Chinese dry pots are the soup-less incarnations of classic hot pots. They’re constructed here with chicken, fish, lamb, beef or tofu, in addition to a bounty of colorful vegetables that includes bamboo shoots, snap peas, celery and double doses of chili peppers. We chose the chicken dry pot, served in a metal urn and kept warm by Sterno. The presentation and flavors were gorgeous, and the amount of tender chicken meat was surprisingly abundant for a dish costing only $8.99. Two people can easily share it and possibly end up with leftovers. Perhaps it was overkill, but I had to try the “kong” pao chicken, which also yielded scads of meat and didn’t fall short on peanuts or chili peppers. As with all of the entrees, you must inspect every forkful of food before shoveling it into your mouth.

Otherwise you risk incinerating your uvula with sneaky bits of chili peppers and their unforgiving seeds that surfaced continuously in our main courses. In a subsequent visit, I started with a stack of six extracrispy spring rolls. The waitress-owner admitted reluctantly they are not made in-house, but stressed “they are very good with all vegetables inside.” She was right. I also tried a weakly flavored onion cake that sprang to life with a few drops of chili oil. Its texture was comforting, like a cross between phyllo pastry and a grilled flour tortilla. For saucy dishes such as Szechwan shrimp, hot and sour cabbage or the Kung pao choices, it acts as a more interesting mop than white rice. A few dishes across the menu are preceded with the words “local flavor,” such as the pork dish I ordered after wards. It basically means that those particular proteins are ser ved in chili sauce and accented heavily with fresh cilantro. Spicy and delicious it was, although I wasn’t nuts about the pork’s long, wormy cuts. It was as though the meat had been extruded from a sausage maker. There are several dishes that will lure me back when the gods of capsaicin call

Mr. Spicy 6618 Mission Gorge Road (Grantville) 619-546-6686 Prices: Soups and appetizers, $2.99 to $7.99; entrees, $6.99 to $13.99; lunch specials (available from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m., Monday through Friday), $5.99 to $7.99 again. Among the hottest that I’ll dare try are green-chili shrimp in hot sauce, dry pot flounder, cumin lamb, and sliced beef in Szechwan sauce. The menu caters kindly to timid palates with almond chicken, walnut shrimp and chow mein. But with a name like Mr. Spicy, why bother coming if your taste buds aren’t ready for a thrill? —Frank Sabatini Jr. is the author of “Secret San Diego” (ECW Press), and began his local writing career more than two decades ago as a staf fer for the former San Diego Tribune. You can reach him at


GAY SAN DIEGO July 24 - Aug 6, 2015


Live music – The Wailers: The Del Mar Racetrack’s summer concert series will feature legendary reggae band The Wailers after the final race of the day. Concert included with admission before the last race goes off or $20. 2260 Jimmy Durante Blvd., Del Mar. Visit

‘A Gay Girl in Damascus – The Amina Profile’: This film will be shown tonight through July 30; it explores the frantic hunt to save a kidnapped Syrian-American revolutionar y from rape, torture and death in war-torn Syria — who turns out to be fictional. Digital Gym Cinema, 2921 El Cajon Blvd., North Park. Visit

SATURDAY, JULY 25 Del Mar Craft Beer Fest: More than 50 craft beers from San Diego breweries will be on hand during this special day at the Del Mar races. Admission included with track admission. Five 7-ounce tasters are $20; full-sized beers may also be purchased. Additional beer fest scheduled for Saturday, Aug. 29. 2260 Jimmy Durante Blvd., Del Mar. Visit

Avenue. Find the “Gay for Good — San Diego” group on Facebook. Artist Meet and Greet – Carolyn Guerra, ceramic sculptor: Special meet-and-greet coinciding with Guerra’s multimedia exhibit, “Things Better Said Than Done.” It will be on display through July 29. 7 – 9 p.m. Alexander Salazar Fine Art, 1040 Seventh Ave., Downtown. Visit South Park Summer Walkabout: Quarterly event by South Park businesses between Juniper and 30th/Fern streets and 30th and Grape streets offering specials, entertainment and extended hours. Free and open to all ages. 6 – 10 p.m. Visit Walkabout.html. ‘Imagine – The Music of Lennon and McCartney’: The San Diego Gay Men’s Chorus will celebrate the Lennon and McCartney songbook with two nights of performances featuring over 200 singers and dancers. Tickets start at $17, 8 p.m. with an additional performance Sunday, July 26 at 3 p.m. Balboa Theatre, 868 Fourth Ave., Downtown. Visit HessFest: Mike Hess Brewing is celebrating its five-year anniversary with festivities taking over Grim Avenue between University Avenue and North Park Way. There will be 19 guest breweries pouring and live music by The Routine and The Fab Lushes, and food served by local restaurants including City Tacos, Carnitas Snack Shack, Waypoint Public and more. General session tickets are $45; VIP tickets are $60. 12:30 p.m. Visit


GSDBA Pedal, Network, Prosper Social Club: A way for GSDBA members to socialize while bicycling around San Diego. The ride will begin at the Chula Vista Marina, continue down The Strand and back: 20-mile ride starts at 8:30 a.m., 10-mile ride starts at 9:30 a.m. Register online. Visit Beach cleanup with Gay for Good — San Diego: Gay for Good is joining Surfrider San Diego for this beach and street cleanup at Coronado City Beach. 9 – 11 a.m. Meet on the beach at Ocean Boulevard and Isabella

‘Imagine – The Music of Lennon and McCartney’: The San Diego Gay Men’s Chorus will celebrate the Lennon and McCartney songbook with performances featuring over 200 singers and dancers. Tickets start at $17, 3 p.m. matinee. Balboa Theatre, 868 Fourth Ave., Downtown. Visit ‘Twelfth Night’: The final performance of this William Shakespeare classic starring Rutina Wesley (“True Blood”) as Viola. 8 p.m. Lowell Davies Festival Theatre, Old Globe Theatre, 1363 Old Globe Way, Balboa Park. For more information visit or call 619-234-5623.

MONDAY, JULY 27 Winemaker’s series, Domaine Lafite Baron de Rothschild: This five-course wine-

pairing dinner is hosted by Croce’s sommelier Michael Simpson and Mario Brow. Includes 3-ounce tasters, appetizer, salad, half-portion entrees and dessert. $100. Croce’s Park West, 2760 Fifth Ave., Bankers Hill. Visit for menu and make reservations via email or by phone 619-233-4355.

TUESDAY, JULY 28 LGBT Militar y Support Group: For LGBT active duty service members and their families — meeting on the fourth Tuesday of every month. Open for couples with or without children. 6 – 7:30 p.m. For more information, contact Caroline Bender at 619-222-5586 or San Diego LGBT Center, 3909 Centre St., Hillcrest. Visit


Island Drive. For tickets and more visit ‘Mulholland Drive’: Cinema Under the Stars presents David Lynch’s surreal mystery starring Naomi Watts and Laura Barring. Additional screening on Friday, July 31. 8 p.m. $15. 4040 Goldfinch St., Mission Hills. For more info visit or call 619295-4221.

FRIDAY, JULY 31 GLSEN comedy fundraiser: This show will benefit the San Diego Chapter of the Gay, Lesbian and Straight Education Network (GLSEN). $25 – $50. Wine and cheese reception at 7 p.m.; show at 8 p.m. Diversionary Theatre, 4545 Park Blvd., University Heights. Find “GLSEN San Diego” on Facebook of visit


Out Night at Cygnet: An evening for theater-lovers in the LGBT community. Pre-show mixer on the patio for everyone with a ticket to tonight’s performance of “Dogfight.” The show runs through Aug. 23. 6:30 p.m. 4040 Twiggs St., Old Town. Tickets 619-337-1525 or

‘Wizard of Oz’: Cinema Under the Stars presents the 1939 classic starring Judy Garland. Additional screening on Sunday, Aug. 2. 8 p.m. $15. 4040 Goldfinch St., Mission Hills. For more info, visit or call 619-295-4221.


Sunday Bust in North County: Every Sunday, Hill St. Café turns into a safe space for all LGBT and allies to gather. Food is vegan-friendly, and they serve beer, wine and sake. Fifteen percent of proceeds go to the North County LGBTQ Resource Center. 3 – 9 p.m. Hill St. Café, 524 S. Coast Highway, Oceanside. Visit



‘Evita’: A staged-reading concert benefitting Cygnet’s artist advocate program. $50. Reception 7

GSDBA Engaging Aging Professional Af finity Group: Greater San Diego Business Association’s program designed to provide professional development and education for members in professions that ser ve the aging population. RSVP required. Noon – 1:30 p.m. Via at La Jolla Villas, 8515 Costa Verde Blvd., La Jolla. Visit Bubbles and Cupcakes: A fundraiser by The Center’s Young Professionals Council to raise money for their AIDSWalk San Diego team. $10 suggested donation. 6 – 9 p.m. Babycakes San Diego, 3766 Fifth Ave., Hillcrest. Visit

THURSDAY, AUG. 6 ‘Man Clan’: West Coast premiere production by Michael Mizerany’s new performance company Compulsion Dance and Theatre. Five shows only start tonight at 7 p.m. with additional performances on Aug. 7, 8 and 9. $15 – $30. Diversionar y Theatre, 4545 Park Blvd., University Heights. Tickets diversionary. org or call 619-220-0097. ‘Harold and Maude’: Cinema Under the Stars presents the 1971 cult classic about the taboo romantic relationship between a 20-year-old and an 80-year-old. Additional screening on Friday, Aug. 7. 8 p.m. $15. 4040 Goldfinch St., Mission Hills. For more info visit or call 619-295-4221. —Email calendar items to morgan@sdcnn.comt

solution on page 10


Feeling Fit Club: New 50 or Better class for older adults and suitable for all levels on Mondays and Wednesdays. Improve balance, strength, flexibility, etc. Exercises can be done sitting or standing. 1 – 2 p.m. For more info contact La Rue Fields at The Center, 3903 Centre St., Hillcrest. Visit


1 Protection for one’s head 6 Sweet dream spoiler 11 Prepare for phone sex 15 “I am ___ than grass ...” (Sappho) 16 Hub-to-rim lines 17 Event for Geert Blanchart 18 Cara of “Fame” 19 Right on the button 20 What Dorian Gray never does 21 Porno film “___ 69” 22 “I Do” singer 24 “Chapel of Love” singer 28 You betcha 29 Like sex for one 30 Threesome member for Dumas 34 Gaza Stripper, e.g. 38 Rick’s old flame 40 Frame of mind 41 “Wedding Serenade” singer 44 Bound by routine 45 Mishima’s continent



Horse Racing — ‘Free and Easy Wednesday’: Every Wednesday features free stretch run admission, program, and seat with half-priced beers, soda and hot dogs at Stretch Run concession stands at the Del Mar Racetrack. 2260 Jimmy Durante Blvd., Del Mar. Visit

Democrats for Equality: Monthly meeting, open to public, on fourth Thursday of month. Meeting at 7 p.m. with social time beginning one half-hour prior. Joyce Beers Community Center, 3900 Vermont St., Hillcrest. Visit Live music – Spandau Ballet: The five original members of this influential British band will reunite for special live performances in select cities including San Diego! $55+, 7:30 p.m. Humphreys Concerts by the Bay, 2241 Shelter

p.m., show 8 p.m. with an additional performance Tuesday, Aug. 4. Cygnet Theatre, 4040 Twiggs St., Old Town. Visit Live music – Pat Benatar: An evening with ’80s and MTV sensation Pat Benatar and her longtime husband and accompanist, Neil Giraldo. 8 p.m. Tickets $86 – 151. The Belly Up Tavern, 143 S. Cedros Ave., Solana Beach. Visit

DOWN 46 ’50s talk-show pioneer 47 Homosexuality and more, in Leviticus 48 Sea eagles 50 LBJ’s veep 52 “Beautiful Day” singer 57 What the four songs in this puzzle celebrate for LGBTs 61 Frightfully strange 62 Architecture, to Julia Morgan 63 Blue material, but not porn 66 Persona non ___ 67 Diplomacy breakdown 68 De Wolfe of design 69 Rob on the screen 70 Lambda Legal Defense suit, e.g. 71 Shirt spoiler 72 What a chicken hawk may raid

1 Cathedral of Hope topper 2 Claire McNab’s inspector Ashton 3 Alaskan tongue 4 Slow, to Saint-Saens 5 Emulates a peacock 6 “We ___ Family” 7 Overly permissive 8 Butler’s last words 9 Affluent, to Lorca 10 Walter portrayed by Danny Kaye 11 Where cross-dressers race 12 He did Moor good, then harm 13 Perfect serves from Mauresmo 14 It’s sometimes more 23 “Coffee, ___ Me?” 25 Floorboard supporter 26 Earthen pot 27 Biblical prophet married to Gomer 31 “If I Only ___ Brain” 32 Poet Broumas 33 One available for future reference? 34 In the center of

35 Butch Janet 36 “The Spell” author Hollinghurst 37 Gay honeymoons won’t contribute to this 39 Cruising, maybe 40 Had in mind 42 Kind of bar 43 Al who blew it 49 Pete of folk 51 Hell for the Greeks? 52 Head-oriented group 53 Left page, in a manuscript 54 Muse for Millay 55 Removal of the foreskin and more 56 It helps a baker get it up 57 “South Park” composer Shaiman 58 Vehicle for the high C’s? 59 New York Liberty game officials 60 Moola 64 Caesar’s three 65 Queens on a chessboard, ironically


o g e i D n a S m Faces fro 2015 LGBT Pride

GAY SAN DIEGO July 24 - Aug 6, 2015

(Photo by Lisa Hamel)

(Photos by Deb Coker)

(Courtesy San Diego Pride)

(Photo by Lisa Hamel)

see Briefs, pg 15

(Photo by David Mannis)

(Photo by David Mannis)



GAY SAN DIEGO July 24 - Aug 6, 2015


Wanna play LGBT sports? Dugout Chatter Jeff Praught Tennis The San Diego Tennis Federation (SDTF), founded in 1983, is one of the largest LGBT tennis leagues in the nation with over 200 members. The popular organization provides ample opportunity for players to compete, or even just practice, with other players of varying skill level. The SDTF holds events such as Team Tennis, Promiscuous Doubles (where partners swap every 20 minutes on Sunday mornings at 9 a.m.), a Singles Challenge Ladder (players climb up the “ladder” by earning points for each victory), Singles League (held on Saturday mornings at 9 a.m.), and the popular Friday Night Doubles at Balboa Tennis Center (2221 Morley Field Drive). SDTF is active both socially and philanthropically within our community. The group participates in AIDS Walk and donates to causes such as the Imperial Court de San Diego’s “Toys for Kids” drive and Feeding America San Diego. It also hosts its own large tournament called San Diego Open every July 4th weekend. This year’s event marked the 30th San Diego Open in event history. Fourteen champions were crowned in various categories, including Over-40 competitions in both singles and doubles. Participants travel from across the country and the tournament even draws a few international entrants. Newcomers to San Diego’s tennis scene are strongly encouraged to gain their introduction to SDTF by showing up on Fridays. Sign-ups for Friday Night Doubles are at 6 p.m., with matches beginning an hour later. Skill levels range from beginners to experts. Membership is just $48 per year, plus a $12 initiation fee. For more info, visit Bowling For those looking for a new social activity to explore, the month of September marks the beginning of the fall season for the Rainbow League and High Rollers League within our LGBT bowling circuit. Each league runs 32 weeks, taking you into April, and bowlers pay $20 a week to participate. A team consists of five men or women (gay or straight), and a team can have alternates. New players spend their first three weeks establishing a handicap, a means of establishing sort of a median expected average of how you would normally bowl. Starting the fourth week, that handicap is then used and retroactively applied to the previous three results. The handicap system allows players of all skill levels to compete against each other. For example, if someone with a 220 handicap faces an opponent with a 120 handicap, we would normally expect the former bowler to wipe out the latter. However, these leagues are more about how well you perform in relation to your established handicap. So the latter bowler gets 100 bonus pins, and from there, the results are a comparison to that night’s performance in relation to the handicaps of each bowler. The season is broken up into trimesters and the team with the most wins during each trimester clinches a spot in the Roll-Off at the end of the season. One wild card team also advances, offering a field of four teams that compete for cash prizes. Individual prizes are also

awarded for High Scratch Series, High Scratch Game, High Handicap Series and High Handicap game. No individual may win more than one of those categories, guaranteeing that at least four people win money in those individual categories. The league also holds a popular 50-50 raffle drawing each week. Players buy in to win cash prizes, with half the money going to local charities. If a player’s name is drawn in the raffle, the whole bowling alley stops to watch them try to win the pot. If they roll a strike, they win the money. If they roll a spare, they get a small token amount of cash and the pot rolls over to the following week. The High Rollers League takes place on Wednesday nights at Kearny Mesa Bowl, while the Rainbow League hits the lanes on Thursday evenings. Practice begins at 6:30 p.m. and individual newcomers are encouraged to come by at 6:15 p.m. to get involved. For more information on these leagues and how to get your team involved, contact David Hilbish ( or Judy Thompson (judy_thompson9@cox. net). Sign up soon, as September is just a month away! Other leagues starting soon Softball players can get involved with America’s Finest City Softball League ( by joining AFCSL’s abbreviated fall season, which begins in September. This season is typically six weeks long, as opposed to the normal 10-week spring season, but “fall ball” affords newcomers the opportunity to get their name out there and find teams for the spring. The league also hosts its annual Autumn Classic tournament here every Columbus Day weekend, bringing in over 90 teams from across the country in a typical year. Basketball players can look forward to the lengthy fall season of San Diego Hoops (, which typically begins sometime in October after a few weeks of Open Gym. The league has begun playing games at the Boys & Girls Club in Linda Vista for the first time, using this year’s summer league as a test for the new gym. The fall season, which runs into March, has been around since the league’s founding in 1999. —Jeff Praught is actively involved in the LGBT sports community, having participated in softball, basketball, football and pool as a player, and serving on several boards in recent years. He can be reached at dugoutchatter@


INTERVIEW markets are in South America and Australia and Asia, so we’ll see. No promises, but that’s what I want to happen. (CA) Your 3-year-old son, Luca, is so cute, by the way. (HD) He’s naked right now and covered in tattoos. (CA) If he were to come out to you one day, what would you tell him? (HD) Oh my gosh. I would be so accepting. I just had a long conversation with one of my adult friends who has grown children who are about to go off to college, and he’s like, “I haven’t really had this conversation yet,” and I’m like, “You better do it now because if a kid doesn’t feel accepted by his family, and they’re getting ready to move into a new town, it will just create a divide. He’ll go find his life and you won’t be a part of that. He’ll go find where he is accepted.” Ah, it could almost make me cry. I feel like ... that must be such a lonely place if you don’t feel accepted by your family. I can’t imagine. So, 100 percent, I feel like I would notice all the signs and be the first one to bring it up if I had to, and I would want him to wholeheartedly be himself and know that that was accepted by me. (CA) What advice do you have for youth who want to pursue showbiz? (HD) Honestly, I don’t know. It’s a really hard road, to be honest. To make a transition from that is … I feel like even more so now than it was, your youth is totally taken away. You see these girls dressing like they’re 20 when they’re 14. With Instagram and all this — it’s a youth-sucker. Being 14 in 2015 is intense. I don’t know what I would’ve been like if I had all those outlets to pay attention to and all that babble shit. It’s kind of scary. It scares me raising my kid. The industry is very fickle, and you just do what you can and know that all this stuff doesn’t mean anything. I mean, obviously, appreciate the opportunities and work hard, but there’s so much more to life. This industry is a tough one to crack, but then I look at someone like Miley, and as crazy as people might think the whole thing is, I commend her. She’s so wholeheartedly being herself and is unapologetic about that and she’s doing a great job.

(CA) By just being herself, she’s become an idol for the queer community. She loves who she loves unapologetically, and that’s a huge statement, don’t you think? (HD) Yeah, I do. And she’s wickedly talented, so there’s that. As much as people wanna hate on her for wearing this or doing that or whatever it is people hate on her for, I think she gets the last laugh. At the end of the day, her talent backs it all up. I don’t always relate to everything that she’s doing, but I love that she’s unapologetically herself. (CA) Your show, “Younger,” revolves around a single mom who realizes the effect age has on starting a new career. But how about maintaining a career, because you started young. You’ve been in this business for more than half your life. From your own experience, what is it like to maintain relevancy in an ever-changing business like show business? (HD) Yeah, gosh. There is no secret code that works, as lovely as that would be. I think I have a few things working in my favor. As torturous as it has been at some points in my life to be Lizzie McGuire, I think that when that show came out, it was such a part of who I was, I didn’t feel like I was playing a part. The writers all knew me so well and were writing things that were happening in my life and things that I would say, and I was dressing exactly like I wanted. It was so me. For whatever reason, that show grabbed people at a time in their life when they really needed her or related to her, so obviously I think I got a lot of fans from that who followed me into my music career. I’ve always been a very open and reachable person for them to relate to, but that’s one thing that has really tied us together and why I’ve kept fans for such a long time who have really followed my career and stuck by me and grown up with me. (CA) In what regard was being Lizzie McGuire “torturous”? (HD) I don’t think during the filming it was torturous. I loved it during the filming. I just didn’t know what a success the show was gonna be, and after that — four years, five years after that — and I was still Lizzie McGuire to people and that was super annoying. Now it’s not. I don’t care now. I’m grateful for it. (CA) What would Lizzie be like now as an adult? (HD) She’d be pretty rad. She would have stayed in school a little bit longer, and I feel like she’d be a sous chef or working at an architectural firm trying to make her way up but still fucking up at all times. [Laughs] I feel like she’d be cool – she wasn’t always a nerd! She was just, like, a nice girl. I feel like she’d still be that same way, but I think she would be getting drunk and doing normal things that everybody does. (CA) Is getting drunk a normal thing you do? (HD) Yeah, on occasion, of course. You gotta let your hair down every once in a while. (CA) After “Lizzie McGuire,” was it hard to make the next move? Is it still hard to make the next move? (HD) It is hard. Instead of me trying to calculate how to do it and how to be successful at it — a lot of people chose different ways than I did, like Lindsay Lohan and the Olsen twins and even Miley Cyrus — I just chose to bow out for a minute. (CA) Why bow out? (HD) I really needed it personally. I grew up in the spotlight and on tour and with everyone just knowing me and knowing me a certain way. At some point I was like, “I don’t even know if I’m that person anymore, and I don’t even have the time to figure that out.” I was just making records and touring and making movies, and then doing it all over again. I basically did a cycle of that four times, and by the end of it, I was like, “I’m done. I don’t enjoy this anymore. I’m not who I wanna be.” So, I just took a break. Everyone thought I was just absolutely nuts because I was really successful and making a lot of money. And it was scary, because there was no guarantee that my career was still gonna be there. I think, personally, it was very healthy, and I’m proud of where I am now. My new record being top 5 on Billboard after working on it for eight years — I’m proud of that. I don’t need to be No. 1. I need to just do things that fulfill me and make me happy and hopefully connect with people at a certain level. (CA) Desperation is a dangerous road, isn’t it? (HD) Yeah. And having a child, too, puts a lot into perspective. I’m definitely grateful to still have a spot, and I wanna be an actress too and do a show. I can’t be where I used to be. I just have to be who I am now and be grateful for that. It’s good. I’m happy. —Chris Azzopardi is the editor of Q Syndicate, the international LGBT wire service. Reach him via his website at and on Twitter (@chrisazzopardi).t

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