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Volume 6 Issue 2 Jan. 23–Feb. 5, 2015

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SAN DIEGO SERVING OUR LGBT COMMUNITY

8 DINING

King of Creole

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ENTERTAINMENT

A touch of Broadway

r BOOK REVIEW

Suits and ties and gowns and crowns

i INTERVIEW

Margie M. Palmer | Contributor

Imperial Court de San Diego prepares for Coronation XLIII Morgan M. Hurley |Editor The International Court System (ICS) turns 50 this year, and the Imperial Court de San Diego gets the thrill of kicking off the yearlong Golden Jubilee celebration with their Coronation XLIII (43) and its annual festivities taking place throughout the weekend of Jan. 29 through Feb. 2. Started in San Francisco in 1965, the Imperial Court System eventually expanded across the United States, and into Canada and Mexico. It now boasts 70 active chapters in 68 cities across three nations. On its face, we see the Imperial Court as a bunch of drag queens doing a lot of pomp and circumstance, but what lies behind it? Locally we have the Imperial Court de San Diego, with an emperor (clockwise from top) Nicole the Great, Queen Mother of the Americas, (Photo by Ron Comstock) Emperor Robert Rodriguez, Empress Mia Pearl. (Photo by Rob Lucas/Modern Aperture Photography) and empress that are crowned every year, and a prince and princess royale. The Imperial Court is a 501(c)3 nonsix separate reigns (IV, VII, XI, XIV, Mother of the Americas, by the origiprofit, so in addition to the monarchy, XIX, XXII) as Empress Nicole the nal court’s founder, Empress I Jose it also has a board of directors. Great of the Imperial Court de San in 2007. With this title, Ramirez also Nicole Murray Ramirez, who after Diego, was crowned the first Queen

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Cary NoKey, the persona behind Rob Fusari, the record producer of Lady Gaga’s Grammy-winning “The Fame” album, is currently the opening act for RuPaul’s Condragulations 2015 Tour, stopping in San Diego on Feb. 5 for a performance at House of Blues. During the tour, Fusari, as Cary NoKey, will be performing his new track “American Dream,” which a press release stated, “has an intentionally saturated, gluey sound — as if it were recorded on a 2-inch tape.” On the track, the artist expresses his commentary on the “bleak state” of what Americans used to strive for. A press release announcing the tour — that in part reads like a

(Courtesy Sarafina Scapicchio)

the transgender community. He points to trans people as the few who are still willing to fight to obtain their desire,

see Drag, pg 19

see Sarafina, pg 7

Cary NoKey brings ‘American Dream’ to town with RuPaul’s ‘Battle of the Seasons’ tour personal blog post — contains much of what apparently drives that outlook, and Fusari does not mince his words. “The Pollyanna ideas of work hard, follow the rules, pay your taxes and ask not what your country has done for you but what you can do for your country have fallen into the abyss,” he stated in the release. He goes on to state that things have changed considerably, and people don’t seem to focus on achieving goals, or even have the desire to work in order to earn money. “We expect everything to be handed to us,” he stated. “The new American dream is a lottery ticket.” The one group that Fusari excludes in the press release from what he calls “society’s rampant acedia” is

Anyone who is involved in San Diego LGBTQ activism is familiar with the name Sarafina Scapicchio; the Boston native has been a longtime behind-the-scenes advocate and fundraiser. She spent more than six years with The Center, serving as their major gifts director and just last month she accepted a position with San

Diego Pride where she’ll continue her community activism as their Director of Development. She will be responsible for all areas of business development, including growth, such as sponsorships, grant writing, ad sales, donations and fundraising. Scapicchio, who received a Bachelor of Arts from Sarah Lawrence College and a Certificate in Fundraising Management from the Indiana University Center on Philanthropy, said she’s excited to embark on her latest journey. At the same time, she recognizes the experience of her past have helped pave the path to her future. “I grew up in a very traditional Italian American family; our whole family went to the same church and everyone got married there,” she said. “But regardless of what the Catholic Church had to say about LGBT folks, my parents were always trying to be supportive and loving. I’m lucky in that respect because I didn’t have the experience that a lot of LGBT youth [have] when they come out because my family tried to support me as much as possible.” Yet despite the support of those closest to her, what she didn’t have was a support group of other LGBT friends her own age. “My mom had some gay friends but they were so much older,” she said. “At one point I went to the library and looked up the word lesbian in the card catalog; there were exactly

The sticky state of the union George Vernon | Contributor

Passion and performance Sarafina transitions

see Coronation, pg 3

Intriguing olde England

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Rob Fusari is Cary NoKey Feb. 5 at House of Blues. (Courtesy Project Publicity)


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GAY SAN DIEGO Jan. 23-Feb. 5, 2015

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NEWS

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Coronation XLIII Imperial Court de San Diego Weekend of festivities — Jan. 30 – Feb. 1 Jan. 30 | Thursday: “In-Town Show” A celebration of all the “in town” members of Imperial Court de San Diego, its past Emperors, Empresses, and Prince and Princess Royales. Hosted by Emperor Chris Grinston and Crown Princess Gigi Masters. Numbers Nightclub, 3811 Park Blvd., Hillcrest | numberssd.com 7 – 9 p.m., Tickets: $5 Jan. 31 | Friday: Rio Tijuana Party Raising money for the agencies of the Tijuana AIDS Fund. Redwing Bar & Grill, 4012 30th St., North Park | redwingbar.com 11 a.m. – 2 p.m. Tickets: $20 Jan. 31 | “Out of Town Show” Celebrating the year with all the court’s “out of town” guests. Stage is open for entertainment. Hosted by Twinkle Montgomery of New York and Misha Rockafeller of Sacramento. Numbers Nightclub 6 – 9 p.m., Tickets: $15 Feb. 1 | Saturday: ICC Meeting Lafayette Hotel & Suites, 2223 El Cajon Blvd., North Park | lafayettehotelsd.com 9 a.m. – Noon Feb. 1 | Saturday: Hospitality Open to the public, hospitality is a time for everyone to relax and mingle with new and old friends and food and drink before the grand ball. Lafayette Hotel & Suites, 2223 El Cajon Blvd., North Park | lafayettehotelsd.com 9 a.m. – Noon, 11 a.m. – 3 p.m. Feb. 1 | Saturday: Coronation XLII, Royal Investiture A cross between Mardi Gras, pageantry, charity and entertainment; a change in monarchy and an introduction to the Queen Mother’s heirs. Lafayette Hotel & Suites, 2223 El Cajon Blvd., North Park | lafayettehotelsd.com 6 – 11 p.m., Tickets: presale $50, $75 (sold out), $95 VIP; door $105

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CORONATION became the executive director of the International Court Council (ICC). “The Imperial Courts are like the gay and lesbian Shriners,” Ramirez said. “They do the same charity work, except we have different outfits and costumes.” San Diego first started organizing their chapter in 1971, but the first Coronation Ball wasn’t until 1973. “Homosexuality didn’t become legal in California until 1976,” Ramirez explained. “Hotels would not rent to homosexuals then, so where they held it — the Royal Inn, now the Holiday Inn, Embarcadero — producers and organizers told them it was a big masquerade ball and by the time the event was there, it was too late. They were none too happy when they realized it was [800] homosexuals, but that hotel had the biggest bar night it had ever had. “The history of the court is the history of our community,” Ramirez continued. “Because you gotta remember, the court was the only thing going in all these cities back then. There was no Center, no GSDBA.” Initially, Ramirez said the court was raising money for mainstream causes like the Jerry Lewis telethon, March of Dimes, and Toys for Tots — though the Marines would not accept the toys or money they raised. “A lot of the court people wanted to make good will, but we were also trying to build our community, so the court decided to focus on fundraising on our own organizations and our own causes,” Ramirez said. Now, 43 years later, the San Diego chapter is as strong and relevant as ever. Each emperor and empress is responsible for overseeing the fundraising for the various charities that the local Imperial Court holds dear during the year of their reign. The current monarchy, Emperor XLII Robert Rodriguez and Empress XLII Mia Pearl, have done their collective due diligence and raised more than $104,000. As Queen Mother of the Americas, Ramirez presides over all 70 chapters within the court system,

with regard to policy and direction. During her nine-year reign, she has established a parliament within the system, giving each individual court an international voice, and is now initiating an annual international conference and convention, setting the stage for her legacy: a stronger and more cohesive court system across the Americas. Ramirez — who will from here on be identified as “Queen Mother” — said she was selected as Queen Mother specifically because of her history of activism, which dates back decades. “Empress I Jose said ‘after me, we need to take this into a whole different level; it needs get more organized, it needs to have more structure and we’ve got to be involved in civil rights,’” the Queen Mother said. “He knew I had served on the national executive board of HRC, the National LGBT Task Force, Equality California, so there was that side of me that was civil rights oriented.” Her appointment came at a time when many of the court chapters, especially those in regions that still struggle daily for their right to exist, were wanting to be more supportive of civil rights causes within their own areas. The position came with no expiration date. “It’s like the Pope,” the Queen Mother said, laughing and adding that her predecessor reigned for 40 years. She does a lot of travel these days throughout the ICS, making appearances at coronations and speaking at conferences fulfilling her executive director duties with the ICC. “Half the time my luggage contains suits and ties and the other times it contains gowns and crowns,” she said. While fundraising has always been an important part of what the court does, this Queen Mother is making sure the members of the court today all acknowledge and take their rightful places in the continued movement forward for equality. On Jan. 17, Queen Mother Nicole gave her “State of the Empire” address at a regional ICC convention in Houston, Texas. In her speech, she set the tone for 2015 and dished out her instructions for the year, with an emphasis on

GAY SAN DIEGO Jan. 23-Feb. 5, 2015 documentation. “This 50th year mark is all of our celebration of what we have become and accomplished within over 68 cities,” she said at the convention. “My message to you all is that let 2015 also be the year we take our rightful place in the history of the GLBT Community and equality movements. I thus urge all courts to chronicle and write their individual history ... yes write and put together your own history book 2015 ... assign a court historian. We must not lose our history and accomplishments. This focus is the official project for 2015 ... reclaiming our court’s history and our contributions building our communities.” Locally, the reigns of Emperor XLII Robert Rodriguez (and Empress XLII Mia Pearl, will come to an end on Saturday, Jan. 31, when members from all across the country and 13 delegates from Mexico will descend upon the Lafayette Hotel to see a new monarchy crowned. “Coronation is an amazing event,” said Emperor Robert. “It’s a cross between Mardi Gras, pageantry and wonderful entertainment. You will be witnessing a lot of gowns, crowns, military uniforms — it’s a very regal night.” Balloting is done at the Coronation, so all in attendance will get the chance to cast their vote for the new monarchy. Toni Saunders is currently running unopposed for Empress XLIII, while Michael Lochner and Johnny Glenn are both candidates for Emperor XLIII. “Being emperor has been so rewarding for me,” Emperor Robert said. “Working with different organizations throughout San Diego has been amazing. It reminds me of why I do the things I do. I come from a very large family back In Texas and we didn’t

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have much, but we appreciated the help we received with things that were needed; from food, clothing, toys, etc. “And that’s why I like giving back to the community, not because I have everything, because I remember when I didn’t have anything,” he continued. “And I’ve been living by this motto for several years now.”  As is their charter throughout the year, the court will be raising money during their many festivities all weekend, and at the Coronation, they’ll be awarding $5,000 worth of scholarships to students hoping to further their education. The Rio Tijuana Party, taking place Friday at Redwing, is an annual event that to date has raised over $170,000 for AIDS programs across the border. The courts’ many other programs and drives include the Harvey Milk/Nicole Murray Ramirez student scholarship; the Benjamin F. Dillingham, III community grant; the S.G. Reichen trans assistance fund; community childrens’ Easter egg hunt; and others. They also raise funds for two Center programs, the Toni Atkins Lesbian Health Fund and the Queen Eddie Youth Fund, and their efforts do not stop there. The Coronation XLIII festivities, which are open to the public, begin on Thursday, Jan. 29 and run through Sunday, Feb. 2. At the Coronation on Saturday night, Queen Mother Nicole will also be introducing her heirs, those first in line of succession, Emperor Rob Surreal of Spokane, Washington, and Empress Coco La Chine of New York, New York. —Morgan M. Hurley can be reached at morgan@sdcnn.com.t

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GAY SAN DIEGO Jan. 23-Feb. 5, 2015

COMMUNITY VOICES

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Sigmund goes to Palm Springs NC Town hall meeting Life Beyond Therapy Michael Kimmel For many of us LGBT San Diegans, this is the perfect time to go to Palm Springs: it’s not too hot and just far enough away to feel like we’ve had an adventure. I was thinking recently of what it would be like if Sigmund Freud — the famous psychoanalyst — were alive today and joined me for a weekend in Palm Springs. He and I would sit by the pool at an LGBT-friendly resort during White Party weekend, margaritas in hand, watching the boys and girls go by. Here’s what Sigmund might say: “You see that guy over there, the one who’s so cautious about his sunscreen and afraid to get wet? He is what I call the “too good boy” … and that shy young woman who’s hesitant to take a chance and talk to the cute woman next to her? She’s the “too good girl.” These people have overdeveloped superegos. The superego is the voice of caution and worry about future problems or dangers. It says, ‘You better not do that, you’ll be sorry.’ Superegofocused people overvalue safety and undervalue a sense of adventure: they avoid risk, at all costs.” I have worked with many clients like this. For example, take Mr. A. He tries so hard to do the right thing, eat right, volunteer for a worthy cause, etc. However, Mr. A hardly ever lets himself go. He’s locked into perpetual Good Boy mode. If he keeps this up, eventually he’s

likely to get so sick of being so good that he’ll drink too much, score some crystal meth and let some guy (or two or three) have unsafe sex with him. Then he’ll come into my office and ask me, “How did I let that happen?” He ignored his inner Bad Boy for so long that it came out with a vengeance. Another drink and Sigmund turns to another poolside gathering. “Look at that group, see the ringleader? She’s not afraid to be loud, bold and blunt. Across the pool is that handsome guy who’s having too much fun and doesn’t know when to stop. These people are the “bad boys/bad girls.” They are totally id-driven. The id is the instinctual, primitive part of us that wants to eat, sleep, and have sex whenever we want to, and we won’t compromise or wait for anything.” A client I’ll call “the supremely charming Ms. Z” is a good example of the perpetual “bad girl.” She almost always finds a way to get what she wants. She’s the woman who’s done it all, had it all, and is bored to death. She’s living the id-driven life, and it’s not making her happy. She’s often disgusted with herself and with her friends/lovers for letting her get away with so much. But she’ll come in for therapy and tell me, “I don’t know why I feel so depressed, I have everything I could want.” Are we doomed to live life in these two extremes? Fortunately, according to Freud, no. “I didn’t want the id and the superego to battle it out alone, so I created the concept of the ego. When you go too far in either

direction, your ego warns you: ‘Stop bouncing back and forth between extremes and find your balance.’” At this point, Mr. Freud (now on his third margarita) explains that some men and women have figured out how to be both Good and Bad. These wise folks can be outrageously sexy, goofy and loud and then pull back and be considerate, thoughtful and kind. They can have wild, uninhibited (but safe) sex with some hot girl/guy they met last night and then go to church the next morning. If you’d like this to be you, consider these questions. I suggest you write down your answers: Think about a time when you were way “too good” for your own good. Now think about a time when you were “bad” — even if it was only for a short while. How can you balance the good boy/girl and bad boy/girl sides of yourself? Put your answers aside and come back to them three days later. Then, let your answers help you tap into both your “good” and “bad” sides, so you can have a balanced life with lots of sexy, spontaneous fun and quiet, grounded wisdom. You can have it all! Enjoy the process! —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 lifebeyondtherapy.com.t

North County Update Max Disposti Ever y year at the end of Januar y, the North County LGBTQ Resource Center convenes its members, supporters and allies in a LGBT Town Hall. In this meeting we share what happened in 2014, including our activities, statistics, where the money is coming from and how it is spent. It is also an opportunity to survey the LGBT community, gather their feedback, and of course, discuss what is in hold for the future. This public meeting has become the event not to miss. Last year, over 100 people participated, and Oceanside City Council members, as well as the mayor (Jim Wood) are always looking for ward to attend as well. This year, for the first time, the city of Oceanside will introduce the new LGBT liaisons for the Police (Lt. Leonard Cosby), and Fire (Battalion Chief Felipe Rodriguez) departments. Director of Neighborhood Ser vices Marger y Pierce will also be the liaison for the city itself. Many leaders of local nonprofit organizations, Palomar Pride Center, Mainstreet Oceanside, and our major funders like the San Diego Human Dignity Foundation (SDHDF) will also be there. SDHDF will also be presenting a check from their 2014 matching grant initiative. If you have ever wondered

what the North County LGBTQ Resource Center is up to, how it is managed and how many wonderful volunteers are making it possible, this event is for you as well. The year 2014 showed significant growth for our North County LGBT community. We increased the number of people visiting the Center, and our activities and programs — and even our budget — continues to grow. However, we are still working with limited human resources and our volunteers are already spread thin. Creating sustainability is the goal for 2015, by increasing our monthly donors but also reaching out to private funders that understand the significance of supporting the only LGBT community center in a region with almost a million residents. If you are looking to begin your support, and/or become a board member of an organization that is making an incredible difference in our community, come Friday, Jan. 30 at 6:30 p.m. to the Oceanside Library — Community Rooms — 300 North Coast Highway. —Max Disposti is a human rights activist, a community organizer and the founder and executive director of the Nor th County LGBTQ Resource Center. He is currently also serving on the boards of the Oceanside City Library and Main Street Oceanside and previously served on the city’s Community Relations Commission. He can be reached at maxrome@cox.net.t


NEWS

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GAY NEWS BRIEFS CHEE CHEE CLUB GETS AN ARTFUL BOOST Longtime local art gallery owner and curator Alexander Salazar has joined hands with the Chee Chee Club, located at 929 Broadway, Downtown — for a year-long exhibition of art. The Chee Chee Club, a typical dive bar, is one of the oldest known gay bars in San Diego and “The Chee Chee Art Project” will consist of 12, monthlong exhibitions with artwork mounted on each of the walls and even behind the bar. The first show, “Dive Bar Art: a figurative and non-abstract art exhibition,” took Salazar over three weeks to curate and drew over 300 people on Jan. 16, its opening night. Many items in the current exhibition come from Salazar’s own personal collection as well as from many local artists, two from an artist in Los Angeles and one from North Carolina, and many of the artists are from the LGBT community. Most of the pieces are for sale and 100 percent of the sales will go to the artists. The current exhibition will run through Feb. 16 and Salazar plans to follow it up with an exhibition called “The Shit Show,” featuring items he’s found at resale shops throughout San Diego. He encourages the LGBT community to visit the Chee Chee Club monthly throughout 2015 to see what’s new on display. For more information, find Alexander Salazar-Fineart on Facebook, or visit alexandersalazarfineart.com. GSDBA FORMS CYCLING CLUB The Greater San Diego Business Association has launched a new way for members to network and socialize with their GSDBA Cycling Social Club. The club, with the theme “pedal, network, prosper,” will have its kick off event on Saturday, Jan. 31. The first ride will start at Coronado’s Ferry Landing and follow the mostly flat bike path along the Strand. The moderate, 20-mile ride will begin at 8:30 a.m. and the easy, 10-mile group will step off at 9:30 a.m. Afterward the entire group is invited to partake in brunch at Coronado Brewing Company between 10:30 and 11 a.m. The Coronado Ferry can be used to transport bicycles each way across the bay for a fee. Visit flagshipsd.com/Coronado-ferry for more info. Future rides are planned for Feb. 28, March 28, April 25, May 30, and June 27. Locations and times will be announced at a future date. GSDBA reminds all riders to wear a helmet, bring a spare tube, a bike lock, business cards and emergency contact information. For more information about the cycling social club or the GSDBA, visit gsdba.org. LAMBDA ARCHIVES ANNOUNCES ELECTIONS The board of directors for Lambda Archives of San Diego met Tuesday, Jan. 13 for their annual officer elections. Newly elected was longtime board

member and membership chair Thomas Negron Jr., who will keep his membership duties and also replace Charles Kaminski as secretary. Returning officers were Board President Maureen Steiner, who has been on the board since 2010, and TJ as treasurer, both who were reelected to their roles. Two other board members, Amy Bethancourt Rochino and Jeff Graves, were elected to three-year terms during the organization’s December meeting. “It is an honor to serve the San Diego LGBT community through this important organization,” Steiner said in a press release. “I am humbled that the board has asked me to continue as president. We have many wonderful projects underway including trans oral histories, senior oral histories, and LGBT historic sites, so this promises to be another very busy year for Lambda Archives.” Kaminski, who will remain on the board, said he is eager to focus on the LGBT Historic Sites Project, something Lambda Archives is partnering with Save Our Heritage Organisation on. The release stated that the goal of that project is to “identify and protect places significant in San Diego’s LGBT history.” Steiner also announced another new development for the Archives in the release. “We are very pleased that we won’t be worried about our lease or rent increases now that San Diego Human Dignity Foundation has taken over the building and giving us a 20-year lease, but we will continue our fundraising as we continue to collect and preserve our LGBT history,” she said. Those interested in becoming involved in preserving San Diego’s LGBT history are encouraged to email Steiner at president@lambdaarchives. org or call 619-260-1522. Lambda Archives is located at 4545 Park Blvd., in University Heights. You can follow them on Facebook or on Twitter.

GOSSIP GRILL LAUNCHES ‘SUPPER CLUB’ Starting on Sunday, Jan. 25 at 7 p.m., Gossip Grill will be offering a “Sunday Night Supper Club” where patrons will enjoy a fine dining experience created by Chef Nicole Urman, paired with local musicians for entertainment. Each week, Urman will offer a fresh new culinary menu along with a prohibition-era craft cocktails and martinis menu. Seating times will be 7:30 and 9 p.m. “The entire staff of Gossip Grill is ready to bring Hillcrest something fresh and fun,” Urman said in a press release. “Hands down, the special Sunday Night Supper Club menu will provide the fresh; our enter-

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tainment will provide the fun.” The night of its debut, the supper club will feature a wedge salad, pepper and garlic-crusted prime rib, a loaded baked potato and sautéed vegetables paired with a cabernet chosen by the Chef. Each week a new local musician will also be on hand starting at 7:30 to offer ambiance for diners. Jonnae Thompson kicks off the premiere event with two hours of her vocals and band. “I am honored to be a part of this series featuring some of San Diego’s beautiful songbirds, Thompson stated in the release. “I cannot wait to rock the house with my extraordinary band mates and bring a piece of the growing soul movement that is taking place in the city.” Tables for the Supper Club series will be limited and offered on a first come, first served basis, so early arrival is encouraged. Gossip Grill is located at 1220 University Ave., in Hillcrest. For a complete listing of dinner specials and future entertainers, visit gossipgrill.com/event/ Sunday-night-supper-club.

JEWELRY STORE GRAND OPENING Cecelia’s Fine Jewelry, located at 4669 Park Blvd., in University Heights, is having their grand opening celebration on Saturday, Jan. 31 from 12 – 5 p.m. A custom piece of jewelry made by owner Cecelia Vasquez herself will be given away at 4 p.m. Vasquez, who worked at Francis Family Jewelers for over 20 years, will be offering custom work, jewelry repair, watch repair and appraisals. She will also have gold and diamond jewelry, colored stones, pearls, silver, antique and estate jewelry, all for sale and she will specialize in wedding bands for the gay and lesbian community. For more

GAY SAN DIEGO Jan. 23-Feb. 5, 2015 information call 619-297-7300.

CUNNINGHAM TAPPED FOR LGBT LIAISON ROLE Mental Health America of San Diego County (MHASD) has announced the hiring of Kurt Cunningham to its staff as LGBTQ Community Outreach Coordinator. In this role, Cunningham will be working with the County of San Diego’s “Breaking Down Barriers” program, which offers mental health services access to those in unserved, underserved and culturally-diverse communities. Cunningham will not only provide crisis referrals when necessary, but also provide support and encouragement and awareness to the community regarding MHASD services offered and help design those services most desirable or needed. “Kurt’s experience working in the LGBTQ community both locally and nationally for over 20 years, along with his energy and passion for working in the mental health field will most definitely be an asset to our organization,” stated Daphyne Watson, MHASD executive director, in a press release. For more information, visit mhasd.org. VALENTINE’S DAY WEDDINGS OFFERED The San Diego County Clerk’s office will be open on Feb. 14, a Saturday, specifically to ser vice those wishing to “tie the knot” or renew their wedding vows on Valentine’s Day. Weddings will be performed at the new Waterfront Park, located next to the County Administration Building along Pacific Highway and overlooking San Diego Bay. “We recognize the significance that this date has to many couples and are pleased to be able to offer marriage

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ser vices on a Saturday,” said County Clerk Ernie Dronenburg, Jr., in a press release. “Ser vices will be provided by appointment only and we expect the day to fill quickly. Call right now so we can help you plan this special day.” The Clerk’s offices, 1600 Pacific Highway, Suite 273, will be open from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. to issue marriage licenses and perform ceremonies only. Cost of a non-confidential license is $70, and if a member of the County’s staff performs the ceremony, it is an additional $88. There is no additional charge if you bring your own officiant. For reser vations call 619-237-0502.

CALL FOR ARTISTS IN OCEANSIDE The Oceanside Cultural Arts Foundation is seeking visual artists to participate in the Oceanside Days of Art, which takes place April 18 and 19 from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. downtown Oceanside at the corner of Coast Highway and Pier View Way. Painters, stained glass artists, makers of sculptures, ceramics and fine jewelr y, photography and others are invited to apply for this two-day juried event where thousands of visitors are expected. Free to attendees, the show will feature over 100 artisans from Southern California and dozens of food booths, in the newly formed North Coast Theatre and Arts District. It will also offer plenty of hands-on demonstrations for both children and adults, including street chalk art making, sculpture and painting. The application process is now open and will be completed by March 23. Email inquiries to oceansidedayofart@gmail.com and download the Artist Application Form at ocaf.info.t


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OPINION

GAY SAN DIEGO Jan. 23-Feb. 5, 2015

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Editorial

Community excluded in Florence Elementary name change debate By Andrew Towne The proposal by the Gay and Lesbian Historic Task Force to change the name of Hillcrest’s Florence Elementary School to the “Christine Kehoe School of Social Justice” appears to be on its way to acceptance by the San Diego Unified School District Board of Education regardless of the preferences of students, parents, alumni, neighbors and other community members in the immediate neighborhood of the school. There was practically no notice to the community when the first “stakeholder”

Letters Bourbon-soaked memories Your article on the closing of Bourbon Street was not only news (I haven’t been there in some years) but also poignant [See Vol. 6, Issue 1, “Easing on down the road”]. I am sorry to hear the stories of discrimination practiced by previous owners against women. Many years ago when The Flame was the women’s bar, a similar kind of discrimination went on against men. Men were told (not asked) to leave a lot of the time. Fortunately those days are gone and bars today seem to be fairly well integrated with everyone welcome and served at the same

meeting was held last October. Presented at that meeting were 10 letters, mostly by Democratic politicians and gay activists. The remarkable thing about those letters is that so many of them appeared to have been copied from an underlying form letter that was given to the letter writers. The boilerplate statement “I am confident the San Diego Unified School District and GLBT Historic Task Force can work collaboratively to ensure that the proper process and vetting occurs with parents, staff, neighbors, and others so that stakeholders can participate as the renaming is considered” appears in

levels (same drink strength, for instance). My bar of choice is #1 Fifth Avenue, and like so many bars that were designated as gay bars, it has become an assimilated bar for the people in the neighborhood or anyone else who wants to stop by. To my mind, that’s as it should be, and I’d guess that the new owners of Bourbon Street will see it that way as well. Thanks for your very fine article. —Robert Heylmun via email Bourbon Street will be sorely missed … it’s left a big void in my and many of my friend’s hearts. So many fun days and nights there with wet underwear contests, foam parties, dancing, drinking, fundraisers, celebrations and more. But change is inevitable and

PUBLISHER David Mannis (619) 961-1951 david@sdcnn.com

ART DIRECTOR Vincent Meehan (619) 961-1961 vincent@sdcnn.com

EDITOR Morgan M. Hurley (619) 961-1960 morgan@sdcnn.com

PRODUCTION ARTISTS Todd Kammer, x115 Suzanne Dzialo

CONTRIBUTING EDITORS Hutton Marshall, x102 Jeremy Ogul, x119 CONTRIBUTING WRITERS Chris Azzopardi Max Disposti Michael Kimmel Margie M. Palmer Jeff Praught Frank Sabatini Jr. George Vernon Brian White

WEB & SOCIAL MEDIA Jen Van Tieghem, x118 jen@sdcnn.com COPYEDITOR Dustin Lothspeich SALES & MARKETING DIRECTOR Mike Rosensteel (619) 961-1958 mike@sdcnn.com ADVERTISING CONSULTANTS Sloan Gomez (619) 961-1954 sloan@sdcnn.com

six of the letters (with “we” substituted for “I” in some of the letters.) Two additional letters use virtually the same words, but not exactly. And only two letters are what I would consider original. When people cannot even find their own words to acknowledge the importance of community opinion, it is clear to me that they couldn’t care less about community opinion. I attended the second “stakeholder” meeting Jan. 15. Again, public notice of the meeting — if it existed at all — was scant, but that did not prevent an impressive outpouring of opposition to the proposed name change. Of the 12 people who were given two minutes to speak, 11 were opposed and one was undecided. Again, I got the sense that the school district representatives were indifferent to the community. Entering the meeting

I’m looking forward to this space being transformed into something new for San Diegans to enjoy. Thanks Morgan, for sharing your memories (although not all of them were so good), and thanks, Frank for the update on what’s to come! —Benny Cartwright via gay-sd.com Does anyone remember before Bourbon Street? It was called The Stagecoach Saloon. Sawdust on the floor. Jukebox. Two pool tables. One long bar. Pool league on Mondays, open pool tournament on Tuesdays. Home to men and women from the neighborhood, gay and straight … well, mostly gay. Welcoming to all. I met people there that are still friends today. —Gloria via gay-sd.com

Frank Lechner (619) 961-1971 Frank@sdcnn.com Andrew Bagley, x106 Karen Davis, x105 Lisa Hamel, x107 Kyle Renwick, x116 Yana Shayne, x113

ACCOUNTING Priscilla Umel-Martinez (619) 961-1962 accounting@sdcnn.com WEB DESIGN Kim Espinoza espinozawebworks.com kim@kespinoza.com

DISTRIBUTION Gay San Diego is distributed free every other Friday of the month. COPYRIGHT 2015. All rights reserved.

room, there was what appeared to be a sign-in sheet that actually turned out to be a petition in support of the name change. I asked where the petition was for those who opposed the name change. The school district representative said that it was not the district’s job to provide petitions of any kind. If that is true, then the petition in favor should not have been mixed in with informational flyers and speaker slips on the table by the entrance door. Speakers at the meeting had to fill in yellow speaker slips and note on the slips whether they were in favor or opposed to the name change. As far as I know, not one of the speeches was recorded and no notes were taken of what the different speakers were saying. At the same time, the members of the school board (who will make the final decision) were not present. So, instead of “hearing from the community” — which the meeting was supposed to be about — all the school board will see is a stack of yellow slips marked “opposed” or “for.” I don›t call that “hearing from the community.” All of the above smacks to me of the “fix being in,” with politicians and activists looking out for each other while not caring one bit about what the community wants. I think this proposed name change is a travesty, showing outrageous disrespect for the history and unique characteristics both of Florence Elementary School and the surrounding Hillcrest community. Florence Elementary is about 100 years old, and there is no good reason to change the name. Christine Kehoe has never been closely tied to the school, so the name change is purely a political statement. The proponents of the name change want to honor a gay politician. As a gay man, I would certainly like to see Senator Kehoe honored as well — by renaming Florence's school library or auditorium, or perhaps by naming a brand new school. But not by erasing a significant part of the history of a neighborhood that welcomed gays to its midst when other neighborhoods would not do so. —Andrew Towne lives in Hillcrest, served on the board of Uptown Planners, and was a founding member of the Hillcrest Town Council.t

Proud of Prince Royale Mikie, congrats, this has been a long time coming [See Vol. 6, Issue 1, “Profiles in Advocacy: Mikie Lochner”]. I am proud to call you my friend. Stay well and do what your doctor tells you. Be good and good luck in your future adventures. LOL Irene & Doug Milton —Irene Milton via gay-sd.com

Peter Pan syndrome Hi Michael! Can’t we be both? [See Vol. 6, Issue 1, “Life Beyond Therapy: Puer aeternus”]. Can we not have emotionally mature and stable relationships, set healthy

boundaries with ourselves (and others), and still enjoy independence and freedom all while eschewing the things we tr uly find distasteful? I’ll admit, my biggest fear is being stuck in a traditional office job, living an endless race on a treadmill from which there is seemingly no escape. So I have built my life on contract work and telecommuting. It is less financially stable, but I sleep better at night. I tr uly believe that there can be a balance. I just refuse to grow all the way up. I want to retain some of my childlike innocence and wonder and avoid being cr ushed by all the burdens of being an adult. —Kelly Varner via gay-sd.com t

OPINIONS/LETTERS: Gay San Diego encourages letters to the editor and guest editorials. Please email either to morgan@sdcnn.com 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.

SUBMISSIONS/NEWS TIPS Press releases and story ideas are welcomed. Send press releases, tips, photos or story ideas to morgan@sdcnn.com. For breaking news and investigative story ideas contact the editor by phone or email.

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SARAFINA two books and in the second one I found a few pages on the burgeoning gay rights movement. “There was a great picture of women walking down the street and it was the first time I had ever seen people who I knew right away identified as LGBT,” she continued. “That’s where my affinity for Pride and Pride parades comes from. That moment was a turning point for me.” And while many see the grassroots of LGBT activism in bullhorns, parades and efforts to forward public policy, the fundraising component is among the most important behindthe-scene building blocks of the modern day gay rights movement. “When we get people on the ground, are we able to get them pencils, pens and paper? Or when we find people who are willing to call voters and ask them to support equality, are we able to get them the phones, the space, and keep the lights on? That’s what the fundraising piece does,” she said. San Diego Pride Executive Director Steven Whitburn said they are equally thrilled to have Scapicchio on board. “We posted the positions nationally and received a couple hundred applications from as far away as New York,” Whitburn said. “Many of the candidates were excellent. San Diego Pride is a unique organization, and Sarafina, Jesus [Sanchez] and Sara [Aldridge], each bring specific combinations of expertise that complement our talented volunteers and will enable us to grow what we do for the community. “Sarafina has years of experience in our community in both event planning and financial development,” he continued. “Her expertise will be invaluable as we grow our events and our support of the community. Whitburn said the organization and its many events could not succeed without the dedication of its volunteers, board members, donors, sponsors, and other community partners, including those who attend the events and the Pride celebration itself. “It really does take a village to do this,” he said. Scapicchio’s husband TJ, whose praises she said she loves to sing, is just as dedicated to the local LGBT community as she is, currently serving as secretary of Lambda Archives and also as an advisory board member for The Center’s Project TRANS. In her new role as development director, Scapicchio said one of her early goals is to reach out to Pride’s sponsorship partners and not only ensure they invest in the LGBT community monetarily, but that she, through Pride brings an educational component — one that makes a daily, tangible impact — to those partners as well. “Perhaps there is a business that offers domestic partner benefits, but neglects to offer adequate healthcare coverage or gender neutral bathrooms for their transgender employees; or a healthcare provider that does not realize that their intake forms aren’t LGBT inclusive,” she said. “It’s helping our partners make those small but meaningful changes that are the personally fulfilling opportunities I look forward to creating.” In addition, Scapicchio hopes to drive San Diego Pride’s coffers even higher than ever before, “so we can be even bigger megaphones of public policy.” That, she said, is what really energizes her. —Margie Palmer can be reaxched at margiep@alumni.pitt.edu. —Editor Morgan M. Hurley contributed to this report.t

NEWS

GAY SAN DIEGO Jan. 23-Feb. 5, 2015

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GAY SAN DIEGO Jan. 23-Feb. 5, 2015

DINING

gay-sd.com

Big Easy classics from a hidden swamp shack

Restaurant Review Frank Sabatini Jr. New Orleans Creole Café is one of San Diego’s most diminutive and tucked-away restaurants. Despite its address on San Diego Avenue in the heart of Old Town, tourists and locals alike can easily pass it by unless they wander through the grassy garden alongside the historic and supposedly haunted Whaley House. Launched nearly 11 years ago by Mark W. Bihm and Humberto Villegas, the now-married couple has managed to attract a steady percentage of neighborhood taco crawlers with Louisiana favorites such as Crawfish Etouffee, shrimp Creole and hearty gumbo made with traditional dark roux. The structure, which is known as a false-front house or swamp shack, dates back to the late 1800s. It was moved here from Fifth Avenue at a time when more than 200 of them lined the streets of Downtown. According to Villegas, the kitchen was once a gun shop and the small, homey dining room was a storage space. Villegas has also been told by members of San Diego Ghost Hunters that the spirit of a crying little girl lurks inside. The group drops in for dinner a few times a year with paranormal detection equipment and they sometimes conduct

NEW ORLEANS CREOLE CAFE

séances after their meals, he said. Open Thursday through Sunday only, Bihm does the cooking while Humberto works the dining room, its front porch and an adjacent outdoor patio. Bihm is a native of New Orleans and derived some of his recipes from “Mama Barker,” a longtime family friend who taught him how to regulate the butter, roux and cayenne for Crawfish Etouffee. The dish was lush and creamy both times I tried it, and stocked generously with the tiny critters imported from his home state. Gumbo with chicken and sausage uses a thinner, darker roux achieved from mixing oil into the (l to r, from top) Shrimp Creole, Andygator beer from Louisiana, chicken and beef sausage gumbo, bread pudding with whiskey sauce, and Crawfish Etouffee. (Photos by Frank Sabatini Jr.) flour instead of butter. Experienced Cajun cooks like Bihm know exactly when to yank it off compared to when I’ve consumed it we tried, although with less of it uled this year for February 17. the heat at the very moment before in pure form. poking through shrimp Creole. The Expect the regular menu, but with it would burn. In a recent visit, the The shrimp were butterflied and large crustaceans are dressed in beads, masks and wreaths in place consistency was smooth and the ultra tender, although Bihm’s glisstewed tomato sauce containing the to chase away any forlorn spirits flavor sported accurate pungency. tening-red sauce became the high “holy trinity” — onions, celery and lingering within the property. Plenty of soft French bread baked point of the dish. It clung lovingly to bell peppers. I’ve seen it prepared by Sprouts is served alongside to the proteins and offered a fruity and both milder and spicier in other —Frank Sabatini Jr. is the soak up the precious liquid. oniony flavor that complimented the places. Bihm’s recipe falls safely in author of “Secret San Diego” (ECW The bread is served also with a robust finish of Andygator doppelthe middle. Press), and began his local writing starter of BBQ shrimp and Savoie’s bock beer sold in 22-ounce bottles. Conversely, he uses liberal doscareer more than two decades ago hot beef sausage. We substituted Or if you prefer bloody Marys, the es of whiskey in the sauce poured as a staffer for the former San Diego the latter for alligator-pork sausage, café slings a snappy, gulpable verover decadent bread pudding. It’s Tribune. You can reach him at which tasted basically like Kielbasa sion made with wine-based vodka one of the booziest versions I recall fsabatini@san.rr.com.t with kicked-up seasonings. When and secret spices. having, and one of the best. blended into pork, the reptile meat Judicious measures of cayenne The café maintains a low profile isn’t nearly as dense in texture as pepper were evident in every dish leading up to Fat Tuesday, sched-

2476 San Diego Ave. (Old Town) 619-542-1698 Prices: Salads and starters, $6 to $15.75; Sandwiches and entrees, $11.50 to $23.00


DINING

gay-sd.com

Create your own bento box at Artisan Bento in Bankers Hill, which held its grand opening Jan. 19. Customers get to pair multi-grain rice and miso soup to a choice of ginger pork, chicken, salmon and sashimi. A variety of createyour-own bowls are also available. The restaurant was launched by Shihomi Borillo, who also owns Azuki Sushi, and the chefs use “humanely raised livestock” and produce from local farmers. 2505 Fifth Ave., 619-231-0700.

Customized bento boxes are the focus at Artisan Bento. (Courtesy Shihomi Borillo)

A taste of The Emerald Isle arrives to Hillcrest via Oscar Wilde’s Irish Pub, which soft opens by Jan. 25 and will be followed by a grand opening sometime next month. The establishment moves into the space of the original Gossip Grill and features traditional pub décor, a full bar and a menu of “all the good stuff,” according to co-owner and Irish native Kevin Gallagher. “But the food comes with a little bit of twist,” he adds, referring to items like Shepherd’s pie, fish ‘n chips and bread-and-butter pudding. Irish breakfasts, imported beer and housemade Guinness ice cream also comprise the menu. This is Gallagher’s second San Diego venture since opening The Harp in Ocean Beach nearly a decade ago. 1440 University Ave., 619-567-8249.

Chef-owner Mike Almos of Circa Restaurant in University Heights recently introduced “meatball Mondays” from 5 p.m. to closing ever y week. He created the deal “to make something warm and comforting for industr y folk on Monday nights” while also opening it to the public. For $15, you get three hearty meatballs made with Duroc pork and King Ranch beef, a dish of pasta with marinara and warm focaccia bread, all made in-house. 2121 Adams Ave., 619-269-9152.

Monday meatballs at Circa Restaurant (Photo by Mike Almos)

Crazy Burger in Old Town has closed. Coming into its place is El Charko, a family-owned restaurant specializing in Mexico City-style tacos. Born from a catering company, the menu will feature such fillings as traditional campechano steak, chorizo and pastor. Hearty soups, grilled hot peppers and pecan pudding are also in the offing. 2415 San Diego Ave., 619-795-0908.

The unique Cat Café in East Village (Courtesy Cat Café)

Felines, java and pastries appear under one roof at the new Cat Café, a first for San Diego where cat lovers can interact or adopt cats while washing down Danishes and muffins with coffee drinks from Café Virtuoso and West Coast Coffee Roasters. “I got the inspiration of doing this after hearing about the success of a cat café in Paris,” said owner Tony Wang, who formed a partnership with the San Diego Humane Society. “Some people are just dropping in for the coffee on their way to work,” he added. Located in the East Village, the café features a barista and cat playpen. It is open from 7 a.m. to 3 p.m. daily. 472 Third Ave., 619-786-2289.

A neighborhood favorite in South Park will soon disappear after a six-year run. Alchemy plans on closing its doors Feb. 3, but will continue its efforts as an event management company for SILO in Makers Quarter, a cultural community space in the East Village. “The role allows us to stay active in the future of a vibrant arts and culture district as it transforms into a hub of activity. Alchemy has coordinated over 40 events at SILO in the past 16 months and is working closely with the urban planning team from Makers Quarter to bring together a collaborative community and creative culture,” as stated in a press release issued in part by Alchemy co-owner Ron Troyano. The release also states that Troyano will expand his participation in San Diego’s “food system development” and “collaborate on solutions to create business opportunities for local food entrepreneurs.” 1503 30th St., 619-255-0616.

The Chinese “Year of the Sheep” will be celebrated with flair during a free public event at 6 p.m., Feb. 20, at Wang’s North Park. Guests will walk a red carpet into the restaurant to partake in sake samples and good-luck hors d’oeuvres such as fish, noodles and dumplings. At 9 p.m., traditional lion dancers will perform to drums and cymbals to further ring in the new year. 3029 University Ave., 619-291-7500. —Frank Sabatini Jr. can be reached at fsabatini@san.rr.com.t

GAY SAN DIEGO Jan. 23-Feb. 5, 2015

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GAY SAN DIEGO Jan. 23-Feb. 5, 2015

GAY SAN DIEGO Jan. 23-Feb. 5, 2015

Bring it on, 2015 You Should Be Doing It Brian White Helping people lose weight, get healthier and live a more vibrant life is something I am very passionate about and the following list comprises of some the best advice I can give to anyone who is trying to achieve those goals in 2015. 1. Early to bed, early to rise. “Early to bed, early to rise will make a man healthy, wealthy and wise.” Benjamin Franklin’s quote may be more true today than it ever has been. Mornings are more conducive to exercise, stress-free relaxation and will keep you slimmer. Nights are more conducive to melting into a couch watching prime-time programming, drinking alcohol and Internet surfing. If you want to live a long, vibrant life, listen to your body’s natural biorhythms and go to sleep when it is dark and wake with the sun. 2. Nothing compares to inter val training. Especially when it comes to burning body fat.

Athletes have known this forever, but interval training will work for every fitness level. Short bursts of high intensity exercise followed by a more moderate period will save you time, burn more body fat and increase your cardiovascular health — period. The best place to start is to do 45 seconds of cardio as hard as you can, followed by one minute and 15 seconds of recovery time. Try this for 20 – 25 minutes and it will completely revamp your cardio routine. 3. Eat food. Not too much. Mostly plants. Fifteen years of being a personal trainer is a long time and along the way I have seen my share of fad diets and I have even agreed with some of them at certain times for certain people, but the truth of the matter is, the only advice that has stood the test of time and I can get 100 percent (not 99 percent) behind, is Michael Pollan’s advice: “Eat food. Not too much. Mostly plants.” That, more or less, is the answer to the question I have heard hundreds of times over the years — “What should I eat?” To add a few more details, meat won’t kill you (it’s actually healthy), make sure it is

grass-fed, and hormone free. Eat REAL food; whole, fresh foods are always better than processed foods. Drink water and avoid sugar as much as possible.

4. Attack goals and build habits 21 days at a time. It can be overwhelming to undertake a health or fitness goal, especially if you have significant weight to lose or you have been diagnosed with a health issue. When you are overwhelmed, it is too easy to give up at the first sign of difficulty. Without a laser-focused goal you cannot weather the storm. Goals are achieved one day at a time, with persistence and dedication and the best way to build the momentum that will carry you through is to set a 21-day goal. 5. Don’t worr y, be happy. Things never happen the way you imagine. When you are worry-

ing, you are essentially saying, “I know things are going to turn out badly.” Can you tell the future? I seriously doubt it, so don’t waste the energy. Don’t talk yourself out of doing things because you are worried you will look like an idiot, or you might fail. Really living life is all about taking calculated risks or getting out of your comfort zone and if you are constantly worrying about the bad stuff that can (but probably won’t) happen, you’ll never really live. Worry robs you of emotional energy, it distorts reality and is really bad for your health. Physically, worry will increase your blood pressure, cause digestive issues, muscle tension and skin blemishes. 6. Stop thinking you aren’t ready. You are. I have always liked the motto “Ready, Aim, Shoot” because personally I have struggled with periods of inaction in various areas of life and business. It helps me realize that the most important thing you need to do to achieve is to take ACTION. Most times it is better to substitute action for knowledge because really there is no better way to learn than to actually do it. You can always correct the course as you go. Don’t wait for the perfect conditions before you act because the conditions will never be just right.

7. Get a Vitamix blender. This one little kitchen appliance has literally changed the way my family and I eat. Never could I have imagined that blending vegetables and fruit could be so incredibly tasty, give me crazy amounts of energy and make me feel superhuman, but it does. And to top it off, I never thought my kids would beg me to make them green smoothies. If you are serious about living a healthy, long life there may not be a more vital tool to have in your kitchen. 8. Get a quality juicer. There is no better way to give your body what it needs than juicing. Your skin will look better, your body will feel better, your mindset will be more positive and you will have endless amounts of energy just by getting one big juice a day. My favorite morning juice is full of kale, cucumber, celery, parsley, chard, ginger, turmeric and garlic. 9. Nothing will ever take the place of resistance training when it comes to sustained weight loss. Fifteen years is a long time to be a trainer and I have seen my share of exercise fads, for sure. But, the underlying truth in the ones that actually work is that it takes resistance training to build lean body mass, burn excess body fat and to be optimally healthy. Yoga, Pilates and cardio exercise are certainly parts of a complete exercise program (and are awesome) but fat loss begins and ends with resistance training. Work your large muscles, increase the intensity over time and switch up the exercises every three to four months, but never go too long without resistance training. 10. Ever yone can feel 10 years younger with these two things: a foam roller and a yoga routine. While they are a little different in what they do for you, they complement each other very well. Yoga could be the single greatest thing you can do for your health in this day and age. It will reduce your stress levels, make you more aware of your body and increase your flexibility. A foam roller will help you work out trigger points, knots and areas of increased muscle density throughout your body, although I have found it works much better in the lower body. Specifically, the quads, hip rotators and IT band are where you will experience the best results. 11. Exercise for 30 minutes ever y single day. Whether it’s resistance training, cardio, yoga, meditation or foam rolling, set aside 30 minutes every day to do something healthy for your body. Your health is your life. Don’t let it go. Setting a goal of 30 minutes of exercise will make it more likely you don’t miss a workout because of time constraints and it will build the momentum needed to make it a lifestyle. 12. Cut out the white stuff. The negative health effects of eating sugar, namely fructose, go way beyond just increasing the size of pants you have to wear. It creates low-level inflammation in the body, raises your blood pressure, fools your metabolism into turning off your appetite control, increases insulin resistance and gives you that beer belly look, too. If you have a “sweet tooth,” I highly recommend

see Bring it on, pg 11

HILLCREST ADVANCED AESTHETIC DERMATOLOGY 3737 FOURTH AVE. SAN DIEGO, CA 92103 619-299-0700 | DRHEIMER.COM

FROM PAGE 10

BRINGITON you set aside an hour to watch the YouTube video “The Bitter Truth.” It might be just the video you need to cut out the white stuff. 13. Keep it real. It might actually be thousands of times that I’ve been asked what to eat to lose weight and regain health. The answer has become simpler over the years as I have researched exhaustively and experienced the life-changing effects of eating real food with my myself, my family and my clients. Just eat real food. Real food is whole, unprocessed and unrefined, pasture-raised or wild, local, seasonal and organic. I truly believe that industrial food processing has without a doubt had the most detrimental effect on our health than anything else on the planet. I also believe we will never learn how truly bad processed foods are because there is too much money at stake to allow that information to get out. The best rule of thumb should be if it comes in a bag or a box or has a health claim written on it, don’t eat it. 14. You don’t need a product. You need a lifestyle change. One of the scariest things I have learned from the hundreds of clients I have helped over the years is that people are too quick to turn to a product or a pill to fix a (real or perceived) problem with their health. Whether it is sleeping pills, diet pills, alcohol or a Shake Weight (ok, no one has turned to a Shake Weight), people are too quick to take a product rather than take a real look at their lifestyle. Regular exercise, eating real food and finding the right coping mechanisms for stress is hard work, but you’ll add years to your life and life to your years if you put in the extra effort needed to change your lifestyle rather than look to the “quick fix” (I use that term loosely because usually nothing gets fixed, especially long-term). 15. Whatever your past was, it’s gone now. Nothing you do today will change anything that’s happened before, so focus on what’s happening right now. I used to identify with my past a lot, I did some crazy things that people who know me now would never believe (nothing malicious, but stuff I am not proud of). I used to let my past dictate my present and future. But, one of the most freeing things I have learned is that the past can’t be changed, forgotten or erased. It can only be accepted and learned from. We have all made mistakes, had struggles or regrets in our past, but it does not define you, you are not your past and you have the power to shape your future exactly how you want. Remember, there are like-minded people like yourself who have big goals for 2015 — seek them out, find a group, partner, gym or trainer who can give you the support and plan that you need to make this your year! —Brian White owns Brian White Fitness (BWF), located in Hillcrest. He runs boot camps in Balboa Park and trains clients at Diverge Gym. Read his blog at youshouldbedoingit.com, or take his seven-day video challenge to get back into healthy habits. Contact Brian at brianpwhite@gmail.com.t

FIFTH AVENUE BODY SCULPTING 3585 FIFTH AVE., #103 SAN DIEGO, CA 92103 619-299-0700 | COOLSCULPTING.COM Coolsculpting by Chuck Sigmon (certified tech) The latest trend aesthetic specialists are seeing is a new generation of treatments and procedures targeted toward the growing population of people looking for non-surgical ways to better themselves. This is particularly true for fat reduction therapies that help patients transform their bodies. The trademarked CoolSculpting procedure is a breakthrough process (FDA cleared) that safely and effectively eliminates fat without the cost, downtime and risk associated with surger y. Unlike other methods of fat reduction that use heat, the CoolSculpting procedure cools fat cells to temperatures that trigger their natural death. Those cells are then eliminated naturally by the body over the following weeks and months. CoolSculpting results in an undeniable reduction of fat in the treated area and patients can start to see results as soon as three weeks following treatment, with the most dramatic results after one to three months. Visit coolsculpting.com for more information on the procedure. New Year special: three areas (one hour for each area) for $2,100.

FITNESS TOGETHER BLAKE AND GWEN BECKCOM 4019 GOLDFINCH ST. SAN DIEGO, CA 92103 619-794-0014 FITNESSTOGETHER.COM/ MISSIONHILLS You don’t have to live in Hollywood to get “Hollywood Royalty” treatment in your fitness program. Get “star” service here locally with a “white glove” approach to your 2015 fitness program. Our clients train in luxur y private suites away from the unwanted stares and the waiting found in most gyms. If you are seeking personal fitness training and nutritional guidance in a private, welcoming and safe studio that allows you to commit to and achieve your 2015 wellness goals, Fitness Together is the answer. Privacy, respect for your time, results, appointment only, it’s all about YOU … “star treatment.”

Dr. William Heimer and the team at his San Diego area practice consistently strive to achieve the best results for their patients. Whether you come to him for skin rejuvenation with microdermabrasion, wrinkle fillers such as Restylane, or for advanced acne treatment or laser hair removal, you can rest assured that Dr. Heimer and his staff will do ever ything in their power to make sure you leave the office satisfied. Healthy, smooth skin gives you a fresh, youthful appearance. Great skin is a key element of beauty. When your skin is well taken care of, it acquires the famous glow and it is radiantly beautiful. Though they may not be able to put their finger on the exact reason, people tend to notice something special about a person with per fect skin. Be that special person today!

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DR. JEFFREY KEENY, D.D.S. 1807 ROBINSON AVE. SAN DIEGO, CA 92103 619-295-1512 | DRKEENY.COM Dr. Keeny practices general dentistr y with a heavy emphasis on cosmetic treatments. His practice also offers implants, crowns, white fillings, prevention, sports dentistr y and children’s dental ser vices. According to Dr. Keeny, “our patients are our friends.” He is surrounded by various specialists, including a team of four hygienists, and has a customer support staff that offer exceptional ser vice. When he is not offering exceptional dental ser vices, Dr. Keeny is an avid athlete who has completed 10 ironman triathlons. He has done fundraising for var ying HIV/AIDS prevention programs as well as the Challenged Athletes Foundation (CAF), where he has biketrekked from San Francisco to San Diego to raise over $30,000 for the foundation in the past two years. Dr. Keeny has also been a member of the Greater San Diego Business Association (GSDBA) and has many other involvements that continue to help make a progressive difference in the community.t


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GAY SAN DIEGO Jan. 23-Feb. 5, 2015

GAY SAN DIEGO Jan. 23-Feb. 5, 2015

Bring it on, 2015 You Should Be Doing It Brian White Helping people lose weight, get healthier and live a more vibrant life is something I am very passionate about and the following list comprises of some the best advice I can give to anyone who is trying to achieve those goals in 2015. 1. Early to bed, early to rise. “Early to bed, early to rise will make a man healthy, wealthy and wise.” Benjamin Franklin’s quote may be more true today than it ever has been. Mornings are more conducive to exercise, stress-free relaxation and will keep you slimmer. Nights are more conducive to melting into a couch watching prime-time programming, drinking alcohol and Internet surfing. If you want to live a long, vibrant life, listen to your body’s natural biorhythms and go to sleep when it is dark and wake with the sun. 2. Nothing compares to inter val training. Especially when it comes to burning body fat.

Athletes have known this forever, but interval training will work for every fitness level. Short bursts of high intensity exercise followed by a more moderate period will save you time, burn more body fat and increase your cardiovascular health — period. The best place to start is to do 45 seconds of cardio as hard as you can, followed by one minute and 15 seconds of recovery time. Try this for 20 – 25 minutes and it will completely revamp your cardio routine. 3. Eat food. Not too much. Mostly plants. Fifteen years of being a personal trainer is a long time and along the way I have seen my share of fad diets and I have even agreed with some of them at certain times for certain people, but the truth of the matter is, the only advice that has stood the test of time and I can get 100 percent (not 99 percent) behind, is Michael Pollan’s advice: “Eat food. Not too much. Mostly plants.” That, more or less, is the answer to the question I have heard hundreds of times over the years — “What should I eat?” To add a few more details, meat won’t kill you (it’s actually healthy), make sure it is

grass-fed, and hormone free. Eat REAL food; whole, fresh foods are always better than processed foods. Drink water and avoid sugar as much as possible.

4. Attack goals and build habits 21 days at a time. It can be overwhelming to undertake a health or fitness goal, especially if you have significant weight to lose or you have been diagnosed with a health issue. When you are overwhelmed, it is too easy to give up at the first sign of difficulty. Without a laser-focused goal you cannot weather the storm. Goals are achieved one day at a time, with persistence and dedication and the best way to build the momentum that will carry you through is to set a 21-day goal. 5. Don’t worr y, be happy. Things never happen the way you imagine. When you are worry-

ing, you are essentially saying, “I know things are going to turn out badly.” Can you tell the future? I seriously doubt it, so don’t waste the energy. Don’t talk yourself out of doing things because you are worried you will look like an idiot, or you might fail. Really living life is all about taking calculated risks or getting out of your comfort zone and if you are constantly worrying about the bad stuff that can (but probably won’t) happen, you’ll never really live. Worry robs you of emotional energy, it distorts reality and is really bad for your health. Physically, worry will increase your blood pressure, cause digestive issues, muscle tension and skin blemishes. 6. Stop thinking you aren’t ready. You are. I have always liked the motto “Ready, Aim, Shoot” because personally I have struggled with periods of inaction in various areas of life and business. It helps me realize that the most important thing you need to do to achieve is to take ACTION. Most times it is better to substitute action for knowledge because really there is no better way to learn than to actually do it. You can always correct the course as you go. Don’t wait for the perfect conditions before you act because the conditions will never be just right.

7. Get a Vitamix blender. This one little kitchen appliance has literally changed the way my family and I eat. Never could I have imagined that blending vegetables and fruit could be so incredibly tasty, give me crazy amounts of energy and make me feel superhuman, but it does. And to top it off, I never thought my kids would beg me to make them green smoothies. If you are serious about living a healthy, long life there may not be a more vital tool to have in your kitchen. 8. Get a quality juicer. There is no better way to give your body what it needs than juicing. Your skin will look better, your body will feel better, your mindset will be more positive and you will have endless amounts of energy just by getting one big juice a day. My favorite morning juice is full of kale, cucumber, celery, parsley, chard, ginger, turmeric and garlic. 9. Nothing will ever take the place of resistance training when it comes to sustained weight loss. Fifteen years is a long time to be a trainer and I have seen my share of exercise fads, for sure. But, the underlying truth in the ones that actually work is that it takes resistance training to build lean body mass, burn excess body fat and to be optimally healthy. Yoga, Pilates and cardio exercise are certainly parts of a complete exercise program (and are awesome) but fat loss begins and ends with resistance training. Work your large muscles, increase the intensity over time and switch up the exercises every three to four months, but never go too long without resistance training. 10. Ever yone can feel 10 years younger with these two things: a foam roller and a yoga routine. While they are a little different in what they do for you, they complement each other very well. Yoga could be the single greatest thing you can do for your health in this day and age. It will reduce your stress levels, make you more aware of your body and increase your flexibility. A foam roller will help you work out trigger points, knots and areas of increased muscle density throughout your body, although I have found it works much better in the lower body. Specifically, the quads, hip rotators and IT band are where you will experience the best results. 11. Exercise for 30 minutes ever y single day. Whether it’s resistance training, cardio, yoga, meditation or foam rolling, set aside 30 minutes every day to do something healthy for your body. Your health is your life. Don’t let it go. Setting a goal of 30 minutes of exercise will make it more likely you don’t miss a workout because of time constraints and it will build the momentum needed to make it a lifestyle. 12. Cut out the white stuff. The negative health effects of eating sugar, namely fructose, go way beyond just increasing the size of pants you have to wear. It creates low-level inflammation in the body, raises your blood pressure, fools your metabolism into turning off your appetite control, increases insulin resistance and gives you that beer belly look, too. If you have a “sweet tooth,” I highly recommend

see Bring it on, pg 11

HILLCREST ADVANCED AESTHETIC DERMATOLOGY 3737 FOURTH AVE. SAN DIEGO, CA 92103 619-299-0700 | DRHEIMER.COM

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BRINGITON you set aside an hour to watch the YouTube video “The Bitter Truth.” It might be just the video you need to cut out the white stuff. 13. Keep it real. It might actually be thousands of times that I’ve been asked what to eat to lose weight and regain health. The answer has become simpler over the years as I have researched exhaustively and experienced the life-changing effects of eating real food with my myself, my family and my clients. Just eat real food. Real food is whole, unprocessed and unrefined, pasture-raised or wild, local, seasonal and organic. I truly believe that industrial food processing has without a doubt had the most detrimental effect on our health than anything else on the planet. I also believe we will never learn how truly bad processed foods are because there is too much money at stake to allow that information to get out. The best rule of thumb should be if it comes in a bag or a box or has a health claim written on it, don’t eat it. 14. You don’t need a product. You need a lifestyle change. One of the scariest things I have learned from the hundreds of clients I have helped over the years is that people are too quick to turn to a product or a pill to fix a (real or perceived) problem with their health. Whether it is sleeping pills, diet pills, alcohol or a Shake Weight (ok, no one has turned to a Shake Weight), people are too quick to take a product rather than take a real look at their lifestyle. Regular exercise, eating real food and finding the right coping mechanisms for stress is hard work, but you’ll add years to your life and life to your years if you put in the extra effort needed to change your lifestyle rather than look to the “quick fix” (I use that term loosely because usually nothing gets fixed, especially long-term). 15. Whatever your past was, it’s gone now. Nothing you do today will change anything that’s happened before, so focus on what’s happening right now. I used to identify with my past a lot, I did some crazy things that people who know me now would never believe (nothing malicious, but stuff I am not proud of). I used to let my past dictate my present and future. But, one of the most freeing things I have learned is that the past can’t be changed, forgotten or erased. It can only be accepted and learned from. We have all made mistakes, had struggles or regrets in our past, but it does not define you, you are not your past and you have the power to shape your future exactly how you want. Remember, there are like-minded people like yourself who have big goals for 2015 — seek them out, find a group, partner, gym or trainer who can give you the support and plan that you need to make this your year! —Brian White owns Brian White Fitness (BWF), located in Hillcrest. He runs boot camps in Balboa Park and trains clients at Diverge Gym. Read his blog at youshouldbedoingit.com, or take his seven-day video challenge to get back into healthy habits. Contact Brian at brianpwhite@gmail.com.t

FIFTH AVENUE BODY SCULPTING 3585 FIFTH AVE., #103 SAN DIEGO, CA 92103 619-299-0700 | COOLSCULPTING.COM Coolsculpting by Chuck Sigmon (certified tech) The latest trend aesthetic specialists are seeing is a new generation of treatments and procedures targeted toward the growing population of people looking for non-surgical ways to better themselves. This is particularly true for fat reduction therapies that help patients transform their bodies. The trademarked CoolSculpting procedure is a breakthrough process (FDA cleared) that safely and effectively eliminates fat without the cost, downtime and risk associated with surger y. Unlike other methods of fat reduction that use heat, the CoolSculpting procedure cools fat cells to temperatures that trigger their natural death. Those cells are then eliminated naturally by the body over the following weeks and months. CoolSculpting results in an undeniable reduction of fat in the treated area and patients can start to see results as soon as three weeks following treatment, with the most dramatic results after one to three months. Visit coolsculpting.com for more information on the procedure. New Year special: three areas (one hour for each area) for $2,100.

FITNESS TOGETHER BLAKE AND GWEN BECKCOM 4019 GOLDFINCH ST. SAN DIEGO, CA 92103 619-794-0014 FITNESSTOGETHER.COM/ MISSIONHILLS You don’t have to live in Hollywood to get “Hollywood Royalty” treatment in your fitness program. Get “star” service here locally with a “white glove” approach to your 2015 fitness program. Our clients train in luxur y private suites away from the unwanted stares and the waiting found in most gyms. If you are seeking personal fitness training and nutritional guidance in a private, welcoming and safe studio that allows you to commit to and achieve your 2015 wellness goals, Fitness Together is the answer. Privacy, respect for your time, results, appointment only, it’s all about YOU … “star treatment.”

Dr. William Heimer and the team at his San Diego area practice consistently strive to achieve the best results for their patients. Whether you come to him for skin rejuvenation with microdermabrasion, wrinkle fillers such as Restylane, or for advanced acne treatment or laser hair removal, you can rest assured that Dr. Heimer and his staff will do ever ything in their power to make sure you leave the office satisfied. Healthy, smooth skin gives you a fresh, youthful appearance. Great skin is a key element of beauty. When your skin is well taken care of, it acquires the famous glow and it is radiantly beautiful. Though they may not be able to put their finger on the exact reason, people tend to notice something special about a person with per fect skin. Be that special person today!

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DR. JEFFREY KEENY, D.D.S. 1807 ROBINSON AVE. SAN DIEGO, CA 92103 619-295-1512 | DRKEENY.COM Dr. Keeny practices general dentistr y with a heavy emphasis on cosmetic treatments. His practice also offers implants, crowns, white fillings, prevention, sports dentistr y and children’s dental ser vices. According to Dr. Keeny, “our patients are our friends.” He is surrounded by various specialists, including a team of four hygienists, and has a customer support staff that offer exceptional ser vice. When he is not offering exceptional dental ser vices, Dr. Keeny is an avid athlete who has completed 10 ironman triathlons. He has done fundraising for var ying HIV/AIDS prevention programs as well as the Challenged Athletes Foundation (CAF), where he has biketrekked from San Francisco to San Diego to raise over $30,000 for the foundation in the past two years. Dr. Keeny has also been a member of the Greater San Diego Business Association (GSDBA) and has many other involvements that continue to help make a progressive difference in the community.t


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GAY SAN DIEGO Jan. 23-Feb. 5, 2015

ENTERTAINMENT

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Monday, Monday … so good to … cabaret ‘Melinda and Steve’ return to MA4 Morgan M. Hurley | Editor Kathy Najimy’s bed. That’s where Steve Gunderson and Melinda Gilb — two musical thespians who both grew up in San Diego and have been working together on stages across the country for almost 35 years — first met. The duo bring their “Melinda and Steve Show” to Martinis Above Fourth | Table + Stage on Monday, Feb. 2, at 8 p.m. Najimy, best known for her roles in “Hocus Pocus,” “Sister Act,” and TV’s “Veronica’s Closet,” also grew up in San Diego. “Steve probably doesn’t remember, but Kathy and I were doing a show together and she was having a party and ever yone was on the bed,” Gilb said. “Then he walked in and that’s how I met him.” Gunderson started acting at The Old Globe while still attending Crawford High School. He later studied theater in London, and in 1981, moved to New York City, union card in hand. “You just couldn’t make a living [in theater] back then in San Diego,” he said. Gilb — a Granite Hills grad still in San Diego — soon followed, landing a play on Broadway and a three-week gig on Gunderson’s couch. The two friends took in a few neighborhood cabaret shows, and after seeing aspects they didn’t like, the seeds for “Melinda and Steve”

were sewn. “When we created the show it was really a way to showcase ourselves … we wanted to give ourselves work,” Gunderson said. By then Najimy was also in New York, and she and Mo Gaffney, another San Diegan, had started their own off-Broadway show called “The Kathy & Mo Show.” The lives of the four friends continued to intertwine as they traveled in the same circles, lived together on and off, and drew inspiration from one another. They all remain close today. “The Melinda and Steve Show” first opened at The Duplex in New York City. “We sorta didn’t like cabaret — it was autobiographical and full of old standards,” Gunderson said. “And I remember this article came out in the paper that said ‘This is what a cabaret act should be ...’ So we decided to write our own show that was kind of anticabaret, and we basically wanted nothing to do with anything that came before it. In other words, to break all those rules.” Because Gunderson was working as a word processor during the day and Gilb was working ever y night of the week except Mondays — the standard “dark” night for the theater industr y — the pair chose that night to perform and it became their standard. Mondays had other perks, too. “Melinda just literally made

her whole Broadway show come out,” Gunderson said. “They all loved it and told people, a guy from the New York Times came, other media, then it was just something people knew about and led us to doing other shows.” They pair would later write the play “Suds” together. “Melinda and Steve,” though it has morphed over the years as the pair has gotten older and wiser, is more than an hour’s worth of singing, bit characters, comedy and expert musical arrangements. “Steve is like a prodigy,” Gilb said. “One of the best vocal arrangers that I’ve ever worked with. It is such a challenge because [his arrangements] are hard but once [singers] get it, it’s like the funnest thing to sing; the most glorious to sing. He knows how to match voices and create harmonies. People always comment about how well our voices blend.” Since its early days on the New York cabaret circuit the show has taken on many variations and today, while some of the big high-note numbers and the exhaustive prop and costume changes are a thing of the past and characters and skits have come and gone, many have stayed the test of time. Two that remain are “Kathy and Kevin,” Melinda and Steve’s “talent challenged understudies.” “They became more popular than Melinda and Steve so we let them have their own show,” Gilb said.

Steve Gunderson and Melinda Gilb on stage together during “Dirty Blonde” at Cygnet Theatre (Photo by Daren Scott) A playful aspect of the act is Gunderson’s unique presentation of popular songs in a different way than the audience has already heard, like the Beatles’ “Ticket to Ride.” Gunderson rearranged the song to Sonny and Cher’s “And the Beat Goes On,” and in the skit, he is singing it bitterly to Gilb, harkening back to a time when she first left New York — and “Melanie and Steve” — for Los Angeles. “Instead of just singing it as well as I can, I’m just completely distracted and angr y with her,” he said. “[The show] is a lot of work

— more for Steve than for me, because he does the musical arrangements,” Gilb said. “Sometimes I’ll just throw a song at him and say ‘let’s do this song’ and it comes back and it’ll be fabulous, this great thing tailored just for us.” The duo clearly has a mutual respect and trust for each other that comes across in their work. “I literally became a better singer working with Steve,” Gilb said. “I don’t read music and I’m not a schooled singer, but he would just give me things and never said, ‘oh you can’t do that.’ You [become] brave and you figure out a way to do it.” Gunderson is equally supportive. “I’m not a quick study; Melinda is a quick study,” he said. “She is ver y quick with the comebacks. I tr y to jump on her lightning rod wit and hang on to it.” When they brought “The Melinda and Steve Show” back to San Diego on the Martinis stage last summer, it sold out quickly, but they hadn’t performed the act in over 10 years. Gunderson says the show is less “anti-cabaret” than its early days, and now just more of what he and Gilb want it to be. “Now that we’re old we don’t sing like we did when we were in our 20s and 30s but we’re better actors,” Gilb said. “So I think there’s a give and take.” Today Gunderson lives in Los Angeles with his husband Kaore and their dog Wilbur, while Gilb is back in San Diego, living with her mother and 11-year old son. Both still do a lot of local theater — together and independently — with Gunderson just finishing up a stint in The Old Globe’s “How the Grinch Stole Christmas.” Soon, a Gundersonproduced show based on the work of Harr y Nilsson will take the stage at the San Diego Reper tor y Theatre. “I love San Diego,” Gunderson said. “I was a kid and I couldn’t wait to get out of San Diego and now when I get to go there, it’s a gift. They really have the best theater in San Diego; there is nothing like it in LA.” “The Melinda and Steve Show” will be per formed at 8 p.m. on Monday, Feb. 2, at Mar tinis Above Four th, located at 3940 Four th Ave., in Hillcrest. Visit mar tinisabovefour th.com for more information and tickets. —Reach Morgan M. Hurley at morgan@sdcnn.com.t


BOOK REVIEW

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‘The Chamber and the Cross’

Grief, passion, and bloodlines weave through Britain, both old and new Jen Van Tieghem | Staff Writer After a fateful tragedy brought them together, authors Lisa Shapiro and Deborah Reed embarked on a writing journey resulting in a novel that blends a contemporary thriller with the story of a medieval romance.

(Courtesy Deborah Reed)

“The Chamber and The Cross” begins with the story of Laura Bram and the sudden death of her mother — sadly something both Shapiro and Reed brought real-life experience to. Shapiro, now a full time instructor at Mesa College, and Reed, a realtor with an office in Mission Valley, met when Shapiro’s mother — also Reed’s co-worker — was diagnosed with stage four pancreatic cancer in 2000. Reed, having lost her own mother only 18 months earlier, found herself back in the same hospital where her mother died helping Shapiro’s mom, Nicki, write a goodbye letter to her real estate clients. As Shapiro puts it in an essay the two co-wrote called, “The Five Stages of Co-Writing,” the two became best friends as Reed offered every type of support she could as Shapiro struggled to “hold on and then let go” of her mom during her final days. While interviewing the two over email it was easy to see the depths of their bond as they described their experiences researching and writing together. They even wrote their interview answers together saying it reminded them of their old routine —writing, tweaking, reading aloud and tweaking again for clarity. Composing their book together clearly became part of the healing process for these women following the loss of their mothers — who they both describe as avid readers. Each of their moms imparted a love of books onto their daughters and encouraged them to read. In addition to healing, Shapiro, a local gay author who has previously published a mystery and two romance novels with Naiad Press, said the experience of co-writing allowed her to “write a more com-

plex and longer novel” than she could have done on her own. That latter part proved to be one of many challenges along the way. The book includes the contemporary plot of Laura Bram along with the story of her ancestors in the 15th century. The two story arcs led to a growing page count as the writers completed several drafts. “After a writing conference in 2012, we had to make some tough choices,” the two described via email. “Were we going to break this into two books based on the same house [one modern, one medieval]? Were we going to cut back and forth between the two time periods? Were we going to limit ourselves to a specific word count? We chose a plan of action, set a course and embarked on another rewrite.” Literary agents asked Shapiro and Reed to shorten their manuscript but in the end the writers proclaimed that with “a big story to tell,” they simply weren’t happy “slicing and dicing” it. “There was never a time when we wanted to do only one story,” the writers shared. “The question was whether or not we should break this into two books, one modern, and one medieval. The real richness and depth is reflected in juxtaposing two time periods in one house. To us, it feels like two parts to a whole.” Reading the book, it’s hard to imagine it any other way. The modern-day thriller that opens the book comes to a cliffhanger nearly halfway through the 500-page novel. Like binge-watching a riveting TV drama, this spurs the reader forward as the medieval story is then told. The lead characters of each part are strong, passionate women who share a bloodline and a home — Bannock Manor — separated by hundreds of years. As each experiences loss, love and other universal themes, the reader becomes invested in the outcome of each story — and if you’re an impatient reader like me — races to find out how the stories will inevitably interweave. Understandably, the issue of grief is explored throughout the book. As in real life, the characters are faced with moving on and attending to ever y day matters; but they are repeatedly reminded of their lost loved ones and the writing expresses in earnest the raw emotions brought forth by these memories. Shapiro and Reed noted that their early drafts had a more “somber tone” with protagonist Laura expressing her despair in angry rants. As the two worked through their own healing they were able to adjust their character’s outlook. The result leaves the deep emotions intact without derailing the

storyline. Laura’s emotions still include anguish and sadness but readers will also see her hopeful side, thanks in part to a dreamy love interest. Though it took them a decade, Shapiro and Reed went to every length to craft a detailed story, including the creation of their pivotal settings. “Bannock Manor [is] a composite of places we’ve visited in England,” the two explained. “The house itself is based on dozens of manor houses. Most Americans are familiar with the Cotswolds. It’s a beautiful area … known for quaint, picturesque villages, and it has numerous manor houses.”

Shapiro and Reed have each travelled across the pond several times, and with Reed a self-proclaimed Anglophile knowledgeable about England’s geography, histor y and architecture, she was able to help weave all of them into their book. “We took two trips together (with our posse of girlfriends) to focus specifically on research for the book,” Shapiro said. “We were able to concentrate exclusively on the region, and then we really studied manors and castles. Deborah also took a trip in which she stayed in several manor houses, toured behind the scenes and inter viewed the owners.” With that attention to detail the scenery described in the book jumps to life. Like another main character, Bannock Manor’s striking features are as important to the

GAY SAN DIEGO Jan. 23-Feb. 5, 2015

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plot as any other piece; its history and secrets, like the protagonists, become integral parts of the story. Between engaging dialogue, interesting characters and vivid settings, “The Chamber and The Cross” is simply the type of book you can’t put down. Fans of the novel will be happy to know that Reed and Shapiro are currently outlining a sequel. Reed is also working on a novel set in 1349 Yorkshire during the Black Plague and Shapiro has a non-fiction project in the works based on letters written by students at San Diego State University during World War II. For more on the book, its authors and some beautiful travel photography visit thechamberandthecross.com. —Jen Van Tieghem can be reached at Jen@sdcnn.com.t


mo14 c.ds-yaGAY g SAN DIEGO Jan. 23-Feb. 5, 2015

FRIDAY, JAN. 23

Human Rights Watch Film Festival: Running through Jan. 25 this film festival works to bring to life human rights abuses through film. Movies related to LGBT rights include “Lady Valor: The Kristen Beck Stor y” showing on Jan. 23 and “Out in the Night” showing on Jan. 24. Museum of Photographic Arts, 1649 El Prado, Balboa Park. Visit ff.hr w.org/san-diego. “Avenue Q”: Opening night for this play starring human actors alongside puppets tackling humorous adult issues. Contains strong language. 8 p.m. Coronado Playhouse, 1835 Strand Way, Coronado. Visit coronadoplayhouse.com.

SATURDAY, JAN. 24

Live Music – Nina Francis: Enjoy a fun Friday with a midday performance starting at noon in the Expatriate Room at Croce’s Park West, 2760 Fifth Ave., Bankers Hill. Call 619-233-4355 or visit crocesparkwest.com. La Boheme: The San Diego Opera is celebrating their 50th anniversar y with the first opera they ever produced – “La Boheme” – which inspired the musical “Rent.” Sung in Italian with projected English translations. Additional performances Jan. 27, 29 and Feb. 1. 7 p.m. Civic Theatre, 1100 Third Ave., Downtown. Visit sandiegotheatres.org. “Murder for Two”: Previews start tonight of this musical comedy brought to life by only two performers. 8 p.m. Sher yl and Har vey White Stage, Old Globe Theatre, 1363 Old Globe Way, Balboa Park. Tickets start $29. Visit theoldglobe.org or call 619-234-5623. “Sons of the Prophet”: Opening night for this play about two gay brothers dealing with tragedy in their run down Pennsylvania town. 8 p.m. 4040 Twiggs St., Old Town. Tickets 619-337-1525 or cygnettheatre.com.

SUNDAY, JAN. 25

Gossip Grill’s “Sunday Night Supper Club”: Kick off event of a new fine dining and entertainment series. Each week GG’s Chef Nicole Urman will create a special dinner menu along with a Prohibition-era craft cocktail and martini menu. Seatings are at 7 and 9 p.m. Along with the fine dining element, the Sup-

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per Club will also feature local musicians performing two sets at 7:30 and 9:30 p.m. Inaugural menu includes a wedge salad with blue cheese dressing and bacon crumbles, a pepper and garlic-crusted prime rib with au jus and horseradish garlic sauce plus a loaded baked potato and sautéed vegetables. GG’s own Jonnae Thompson will provide the night’s entertainment singing with her band for both sets. Visit bit. ly/gossip-supper-club for a list of upcoming performers and check thegossipgrill.com for future menus. 1220 University Ave., Hillcrest.

MONDAY, JAN. 26

Live Music – Steph Johnson and Rob Thorsen: Enjoy Music Monday starting at 6 p.m. in the Expatriate Room at Croce’s Park West, 2760 Fifth Ave., Bankers Hill. Call 619233-4355 or visit crocesparkwest.com. Live Music – Don LeMaster: Musical director and performer LeMaster will celebrate his birthday with this fun-filled performance. 7 p.m. Free. Martinis Above Fourth, 3940 Fourth Ave., Hillcrest. Visit martinisabovefourth.com.

TUESDAY, JAN. 27

LGBT Militar y Family Support Group: For LGBT active duty ser vice members and their families meet on the fourth Tuesday of ever y month. Open for couples with or without children. 6 – 7:30 p.m. For more information contact Caroline Bender at 619-222-5586 or caroline. bender.ctr@navy.mil. San Diego LGBT Center, 3909 Centre St., Hillcrest. Visit thecentersd.org. 

WEDNESDAY, JAN. 28

Cabaret – Michael Airington: Airington is the writer and performer of “Oh My Goodness … it’s Paul L ynde!” reincarnating the comedian for this rousing show. Doors open at 6 p.m., show at 8 p.m. Additional performance on Jan. 29. Martinis Above Fourth, 3940 Fourth Ave., Hillcrest. For tickets visit martinisabovefourth.com. 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 “Sons of the Prophet.” The show runs through Feb. 15. 6:30 p.m. 4040 Twiggs St., Old Town. Tickets

619-337-1525 or cygnettheatre.com.

THURSDAY, JAN. 29

OUT Night at Coronado Playhouse: A night for LGBT theater lovers with a pre- show mixer including beer, wine and cocktail specials with admission price to the “Avenue Q.” $25. 6:30 p.m., show at 8 p.m. Coronado Playhouse, 1835 Strand Way, Coronado. Visit coronadoplayhouse.com.

FRIDAY, JAN. 30

Super Bowl XLIX – Sunday, Feb. 2 Super Bowl Parties (kickoff at 3:30 p.m.)

Flicks: Free food and drink specials highlight this gathering, followed by karaoke at 9 p.m. 1017 University Ave., Hillcrest Visit sdflicks.com. Gossip Grill: Super Bowl specials include $25 bottomless Bud Light drafts and your choice of two food items off the Super Bowl menu. Plus there will be giveaways, sound on everywhere, and happy hour 2 – 6 p.m., 1220 University Ave., Hillcrest. Visit thegossipgrill.com

draught beers. 1458 University Ave., Hillcrest. Call 619-269-HEAD or visit hillcrestbrewingcompany.com. Oscar Wilde’s Irish Pub: This new spot should be a ton of fun for game-watching with 24 beers on tap (lots of craft options), traditional Irish drink and farm-to-table food. 1440 University Ave., Hillcrest. Visit oscarwildespub.com. Redwing Bar and Grill: Another great spot to catch a game, this bar’s Sunday specials include $1 12-ounce domestic drafts and a burger with 12-ounce domestic draft for $7. 2 – 6 p.m. 4012 30th St. Visit redwingbar.com.

LGBTQ Town Hall Harrah’s Rincon Casino & ReMeeting: Learn more about the North County sort: Massive celebration with a 16LGBTQ Resource foot screen, a buffet, tailgate chair Center’s daily operaand cooler for fans, autographs tions, people ser ved, and from former pro-San Diego football fundraising at this anplayers and celebrity guests. $20, nual public meeting. Plus 777 Harrah’s Rincon Way, Valley Uptown Tavern: The game will be meet City of Oceanside Center. 760-751-3100 or ticketmas- shown on 14 TVs with sound plus LGBT liaisons. Food provided. 6:30 – 9 p.m. ter.com a Skyy Bloody Mary bar, mimosa North County LGBTQ flights, drink specials and a Super Resource Center, 510 Hillcrest Brewing Company: Bowl brunch leading up to the North Coast Hwy, Specials from 3 – 6 p.m. include $2 game from 10 a.m. – 3 p.m. 1236 Oceanside. Visit ncrebaskets of (3) wings, $2 pizza slices, University Ave., Hillcrest. Visit upsourcecenter.org. $3 hot dogs and $2 off all full size towntavernsd.com  “The Judge”: Cinema Under the Stars presents this 2014 thriller with an all-star cast drink prices all night. 6 – 9 Center, 510 North Coast Hwy, including: Robert Downey p.m. Heat Bar and Kitchen, Oceanside. Visit ncresourceJr., Robert Duvall, Billy Bob 3797 Park Blvd., Hillcrest. center.org. Thornton and Vera Farmiga. 8 RSVP by texting SDPIX p.m. $15. 4040 Goldfinch St., MIXOLOGY to 46786 or call MONDAY, FEB. 2 Mission Hills. Movie shows 619-546-4328 or email sam@ Live Music – The MeSaturday as well. For more heatbarandkitchen.com linda and Steve Show: The info visit topspresents.com or duo will perform new material call 619-295-4221. as well as “greatest hits” from THURSDAY, FEB. 5 their previous cabaret shows. Live Music – Jake SimpDoors open at 6 p.m., show at son: The Motown recording SATURDAY, JAN. 31 8 p.m. Martinis Above Fourth, artist will perform his show GSDBA’s Cycling Social 3940 Fourth Ave., Hillcrest. “Love is in the Air (Supply)” Club kickof f ride: A way for For tickets visit martinisabovewith songs of romance, love GSDBA members to “Pedal, fourth.com. lost and love found again. Network, Prosper” and socialDoors open at 6 p.m., show at ize while bicycling around 8 p.m. Martinis Above Fourth, San Diego. The first ride will TUESDAY, FEB. 3 3940 Fourth Ave., Hillcrest. begin at the Ferr y Landing in GSDBA Engaging AgFor tickets visit martinisaboveCoronado and follow the bike ing Professional Af finity fourth.com. path along the strand. 20-mile Group: Greater San Diego RuPaul’s Drag Race: ride starts at 8:30 a.m., 10-mile Business Association’s proBattle of the Seasons: This ride starts at 9:30 a.m. Cyclists gram designed to provide event hosted by Michelle Visare invited to brunch at Coroprofessional development and age will feature special guest nado Brewing Company (170 education for members in Car y NoKey and live perforOrange Ave.) following the professions that ser ve the agmances by Alaska 5000, Bianca ride. Register online. Visit gsing population. RSVP required. Del Rio, Courtney Act, Ivy dba.org. Noon – 1:30 p.m. Vi at La Jolla Winters, Manila Luzon, Raja, Second Annual North Villas, 8515 Costa Verde Blvd., and Sharon Needles. Doors County LGBT Book Fair: La Jolla. Visit gsdba.org open at 7 p.m., show at 8 p.m. Hosted by the North County . VIP tickets available with meet LGBTQ Resource Center and WEDNESDAY, FEB. 4 and greet at 6 p.m. All ages. the Multicultural LGBT LiterMixology: Monthly social House of Blues, 1055 Fifth ar y Foundation, the fair will event presented by SDPix. Ave., Downtown. Visit househave over 300 titles available RSVP required and includes ofblues.com/sandiego. from a diverse array of authors complimentar y samples off including a young adult secthe custom drink menu from —Email calendar items 6 – 7 p.m., plus 15 percent off tion. 10 a.m. – 6 p.m. North to morgan@sdcnn.comt all menu items and happy hour County LGBTQ Resource

QSyndicate.com

Q Q PUZZLE PUZZLE

STRAIGHTS FROM THE HEART ACROSS 1 Gay-friendly Hutcherson of “The Hunger Games” 5 ‘Enry’s fair lady 10 Gay-friendly singer of the Jonas Brothers 14 Invitation to a top? 15 Rock’s “Pillow Talk” costar 16 North Sea feeder 17 Baudelaire’s well 18 Gay-friendly comics creator Morrison 19 Capital of ÷sterreich 20 With 22-Across, gay-friendly satirist and faux homophobe 22 See 20-Across 24 Canon camera 25 Colette’s king 26 Freddie Prinze role 29 James Beard cookbook meas. 32 Orderly display 36 Mane, to “The Lion King’s” Nala 37 Gay-friendly country singer Parton 39 Tubbies’ prefix

40 “Xena” deity 41 MacDowell of L’OrÈal ad 42 Med. care grps. 43 Where to find Trojans 44 Tough nuts to crack 46 WSW opposite 47 With 49-Across, gay-friendly “Scandal” creator 49 See 47-Across 51 Go head to head 52 Queen’s “We ___ the Champions” 55 Fed. book balancers 56 Gay-friendly producer of “The Fosters” 60 Put in a position 61 Stars that shoot off 62 Love of Lesbos 64 Connive with a con 65 “Don’t even bother” 66 Title role for Jodie Foster 67 Delilah portrayer Lamarr 68 Gay rodeo target 69 “Saving Private Ryan” event

solution on page 16 DOWN 1 Blow ___ (oral encounters) 2 Like a top 3 Barrie buccaneer 4 Nags the hubby 5 Rims 6 Aftermath of love? 7 Broadway lyricist Gershwin 8 Silvery metal 9 “The Maltese Falcon” actress Mary 10 Experience at the Cathedral of Hope 11 Eurythmics’ “Would ___ to You?” 12 Good buddy 13 He got into Superman’s pants 21 Boo’s partner 23 Long, in Hawaii 26 An elf-made man? 27 Hard to bear 28 Like Button’s blades, at times 29 Collette of “The Hours” 30 Construction co. project 31 What a Muscle Mary wants to be 33 Got nostalgic about gay icons of the

past 34 Garbo line ender 35 Frida Kahlo’s sis 37 Carvey, who cross-dressed as the Church Lady 38 Linda Hunt’s “The ___ of Living Dangerously” 44 Rosie O’Donnell’s “Exit to ___ “ 45 “Beat it!” 48 Age of a new nonagenarian 50 Hover menacingly 52 Online exaggeration? 53 Stage show 54 Use a rubber 56 Agree 57 Chelsea Pines and others 58 Look at a hottie in a bar 59 Meredith Grey’s kid 60 Skeptical ejaculation 63 Cunning


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HILLCREST/MISSION HILLS

#1 Fifth Avenue About Face Hillcrest Ace Hardware Adam and Eve Akinori Alexis Greek Café Au Revoir Babycake’s Baja Betty’s Baggels Bamboo Lounge Being Alive Aids Support Big City Deli Bodhi Animal Hospital Bo’s Seafood Market Brooklyn Girl Buffalo Exchange Carole Realty - Cent.21 Cascade Spa The Center For Health Charisma Restaurant Chevron Chipotle Chocolat Club San Diego Community Prescription Community Pharmacy Cottage Drive in Liquor Crypt on Park CVS pharmacy Deli Llama Del Mission Liquor Dollar Smart Energy Zone Embassy Suites Fed Ex Kinkos Fiesta Cantina Filter Coffee House Fitness Together Flicks Floyds Barbershop Glenna Liquor Golden Spoon Gossip Grill Haircrest Hairspray Salon Harvey Milks Amer.Diner Hash House hAve.n Body Therapy Heat Bar & Grill Hillcrest Brewing Co. Hillcrest News Stand Hillcrest Pharmacy Hillcrest Post Office Hillcrest Sandwich Shop Hillcrest Smoke Shop House Boi Ichiban (original) iTan Jack in the Box (220) Jakes wine bar Jimmy Carters Café Dr. Jeff Keeny D.D.S. J. Stuart Showalter, JD, MFS Kona Coffee Lalos Mexican Food Lotus Thai Cuisine Make Good Mail Station Mankind Video Martin & Wall (5th Ave.) Martinis Above Fourth Mc Donalds Meshuggah Shack Mission rest. Mission Hills Automotive Mission Hills Library Numbers Nutri Shop Nunzi’s Café Ortegas Mexican Bistro Obelisk Mercantile Park Boulevard Foods Park Boulevard Pharmacy Peets Coffee Pleasures & Treasures Postal Annex (inside) Postal Place (Uptown) Pride Pharmacy Priority/Being Alive Center R Gang Eatery Ralph’s (Uptown Ctr.) Rayzor’s Revivals Rich’s San Diego Community News Shell Station Snooze Rest Somerset Suites Hotel Special Delivery Food Starbucks Starbucks Starbucks Starbucks (Uptown Ctr.) Sunshine Denistry Suntan Lounge The Brass Rail The Center LGBT The Crypt (Park Blvd) T-Deli The Loft Uptown Car Wash Urban Mo’s US Bank V-Outlet Wells Fargo (Uptown Ctr.) Whole Foods Market Winns Barber Shop

NORTH PARK

– Joan Lunden

MISCELLANEOUS

GAY SAN DIEGO Jan. 23-Feb. 5, 2015

7 Eleven (Gossip) 7-Eleven (Texas) Adult World Alibe Artquest Flowers Auntie Helen’s Thrift Store Big City Tattoos Blvd. Fitness Brabant Carls Jr. Center For Social Support

3845 Fifth Ave. 514 Pennsylvania Ave. 1007 University Ave. 415 University Ave. 1417 University Ave. 3863 Fifth Ave. 3800 Fourth Ave. 3766 Fifth Ave. 1421 University Ave. 1010 University Ave. 1475 University Ave. 4070 Centre St. 1010 University Ave. 2200 University Ave. 1040 University Ave. 4033 Goldfinch St. 3862 Fifth Ave. 1050 University Ave. 3785 Sixth Ave. #100A 3636 5th Ave. #300 142 University Ave. 4180 Park Blvd. 734 University Ave. 3896 Fifth Ave. 3955 Fourth Ave. 640 University Ave. 313 W. Washington St. 3747 Park Blvd. 3847 Park Blvd. 313 W. Washington St. 3702 Fifth Ave. 135 W. Washington St. 450 W. Washington. 1010 University Ave. 3645 Park Blvd. 734 University Ave. 142 University Ave. 1295 University Ave. 4019 Goldfinch St. 1017 University Ave. 407 W. Washington St. 2861 University Ave. 1254 University Ave. 1440 University Ave. 1262 University Ave. 141 University Ave. 535 University Ave. 3628 Fifth Ave. 3900 Fifth Ave. 3797 Park Blvd. 1458 University Ave. 529 University Ave. 120 University Ave. 3911 Cleveland Ave. 3780 Fifth Ave. 141 University Ave. 1435 University Ave. 1449 University Ave. 660 University Ave. 220 Washington St. 3755 Sixth Ave. 3172 Fifth Ave. 1807 Robinson Ave. 4021 Falcon St. 3995 Fifth Ave. 1266 University Ave. 3761 Sixth Ave. 2207 Fern St. 325 W.Washington St. 3425 Fifth Ave. 3828 Fifth Ave. 3940 Fourth Ave. 1404 University Ave. 4048 Goldfinch St. 2801 University Ave. 308 Washington St. 925 W. Washington St. 3811 Park Blvd. 1050 University Ave. 1255 University Ave. 141 University Ave. 1037 University Ave. 4504 Park Blvd. 3904 Park Blvd. 350 University Ave. 2525 University Ave 1286 University Ave. 1011 University Ave. 1270 University Ave. 3940 Fourth Ave. 3683 Fifth Ave. 1030 University Ave. 3144 Fifth Ave. 1644 University Ave. 1051 University Ave. 3737 Fifth Ave. 302 Washington St. 3850 Fifth Ave. 606 Washington St. 4021 Goldfinch St. 784 W. Washington St. 2440 Fifth Ave. 3801 Fifth Ave. 1080 University Ave. 4230 30th St. 1050 University Ave. B209A 3796 Fifth Ave. 3909 Centre St. 3841 Park Blvd. 1469 University Ave. 3610 Fifth Ave. 4157 Normal St. 308 University Ave. 610 Washington St. 1483 university Ave. 1220 Cleveland Ave. 711 University Ave. 445 University Ave. 1602 University Ave. 2404 University Ave. 3575 University Ave. 1405 University Ave. 3046 N. Park Way 4127 30th St. 2913 University Ave. 2110 El Cajon Blvd. 2310 30th St. 3008 30th St. 3960 Park Blvd.

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FIND US IN OVER 250 LOCATIONS!

15


16

FEATURE

GAY SAN DIEGO Jan. 23-Feb. 5, 2015

Local chefs share their culinary hopes and predictions for 2015 Frank Sabatini Jr. | Contributor San Diego’s restaurant scene is prolific and deliciously unstoppable. In the past year alone, more than 50 new kitchens have sprung onto the landscape within the metropolitan area. Sadly, several of them suddenly vanished into the jaws of competition. Yet from darling, little neighborhood eateries to multi-million dollar warehouse conversions, we’ve witnessed everyday meals reinvented into works of art and highfalutin cuisine punched down to good old-fashion comfort food. The coming year promises no less in terms of change and experimentation as dozens of fresh ventures are already cramming the pipeline. In looking ahead, we quizzed several Uptown chefs on the dining trends they foresee coming — or those they at least wish would either emerge or disappear. Abe Botello Executive chef, West Coast Tavern 2895 University Ave., North Park, 619-295-1688 “We’ll see a heavier influx of Baja cuisine. We touched on it late last year, with Chad White opening Comun in the East Village and Mexican chefs like Javier Plascencia, who will be opening Bracero in Little Italy. Here at West Coast, I’ve started introducing pepita seeds,

Abe Botello (Courtesy Alternative Strategies)

Oaxaca cheese and different chilies to the menu.” Karrie Hills Executive chef, The Red Door and Wellington Steak & Martini Lounge 741 W. Washington St., Mission Hills, 619-295-600 “I’m really passionate about farm-to-table and I’d like to see it become a truthful trend that follows to every restaurant owner. People talk about ‘nose-to-tail’ cooking and I talk about ‘root-to-fruit,” meaning that you use the whole plant — roots, stems, leaves, flowers, etc. We need to start eating more bumper crops and I’d like to see that become a trendsetter.”

gay-sd.com Fred Piehl Chef/owner, The Smoking Goat 3408 30th St., North Park, 619-955-5295 “More enlightened vegetarian cuisine is coming. I know that in New York, good restaurants are doing more vegetarian menus. I also think that family-style dining is going to become more popular and that white table cloths are going out because great food isn’t done only by fine-dining restaurants anymore.” John Bracamonte Co-owner/pit master, Brazen BBQ Smokehouse & Bar 441 Washington St., Hillcrest, 619-816-1990 “I think we’re seeing more of the Southern influence lately. And based on our customers, we’re getting a lot of requests for more Southern-style foods, which we’ll start rolling out in April, such as crawfish, catfish, grits, pork steaks and a return of spareribs. We’re considering Southern desserts, too, like pecan and sweet potato pies and beignets.”

Karrie Hills (Courtesy PlainClarity Communications)

Oz Blackaller Chef/owner, Cueva Bar 2123 Adams Ave., University Heights, 619-269-6612 “I would really like to see San Diegans enjoying more of what we already have rather than waiting for the next big thing to come along. There is a lot of local talent here and a lot of casual restaurants where passion is the focus, such as Don Chido and Comun. And there’s a new fish and beer spot coming to Normal Heights that I think will be a hit.”

Alberto Morreal Chef/partner, Fig Tree Café and Farmer’s Bottega Restaurant 416 University Ave., 619-298-2010 and 860 W. Washington St., 619458-9929 “We’ll see more restaurants reinvent themselves into bistro-style restaurants that get straight to the point with good food, good service and good ambiance. The farm-to-table trend of the past four or five years will continue growing. And people will continue searching for craft beers originating from all over, not just from San Diego.” t

Alberto Morreal (Courtesy Alternative Strategies)

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LAUNDRY SERVICE


INTERVIEW

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GAY SAN DIEGO Jan. 23-Feb. 5, 2015

Kathy Griffin: In all seriousness… Comedian opens up on Joan’s death, hosting “Fashion Police” and emojis from Cher Chris Azzopardi | QSyndicate Kathy Griffin isn’t kidding when she says, “If I can get serious for one second …” Putting aside her usual biting assault against all things celebrity, the comedian gets candid about her dear friend and idol Joan Rivers in our latest interview: Griffin’s frequent death-related conversations with the late comedy legend, “literally” getting Joan’s permission to supersede her on “Fashion Police,” and how Joan taught Kathy “not to give a fuck.” Chris Azzopardi [CA] Hi Kathy, how are ya? Kathy Griffin [KG] Umm, this isn’t gonna go out to any, uh, gay people, right, Chris? Because, you know, you give those people an inch, they’ll take a mile. [CA] Are you talking about penis size? [KG] I’m talking about, when are we gonna end it with the letters and the numbers, Chris! LGBTQIA-2-3-4-5! Dammit! I’ve got a GLAAD Vanguard Award and an HRC Award and I still can’t keep up. [CA] I’m gay myself and I can’t keep up. [KG] [Laughs] Which letter or number are you? [CA] Just the G for now. [KG] Look, Chris, you’ve gotta up your game. You’ve gotta stick in at least — can’t you be a Q? How hard is it to be a “questioning”? [CA] For you, Kathy, I could be a Q. And I could be a number. [KG] OK, good. I just wanted to get a little something out of you, because, you know, I gotta be up on the times with the LGBTQIA2s, and from what I understand you people are adding letters on a daily basis. [CA] It’s really confusing you straight people, I know. [KG] [Laughs] Keep it simple for the breeders! We are simple people, dammit! [CA] So, Kathy, congratulations on “Fashion Police!” [KG] Thank you! I am so-o-o-o excited! I mean, obviously I have the biggest shoes in the world to fill. But the fact that Joan and I were such good pals — and, in fact, discussed the show many, many times — it’s just, for me, if I can get serious for one second, actually meaningful. And I know it’s a silly show — we’re gonna make fun of silly celebrities and pictures — but Joan was such a good pal to me, and also an unrecognized pioneer in many ways. I have to say, I really am getting a lot of gratification out of the fact that I believe posthumously she’s finally getting the respect that she so earned and so deserved, and that’s kind of a mission that I’ve assigned to myself. No one has assigned it to me, but it’s just important to me that her legacy is protected and honored, because it’s a legit legacy. I mean, she was wild and outrageous, and I get it — with the sequin jackets and the feather boas and the saying crazy things to TMZ — but

just as a female comedian, I mean, talk about a feminist, talk about a groundbreaker. I would never have this career without her, and I don’t mean just this job (on “Fashion Police”) — like, duh — but I mean everything from the beginning: what she did for women in comedy in such a male-dominated field, and for the LGBT community, and being down with the gays long before Stonewall, before it was cool. Anyway, it’s such an honor for me to sit in that chair. [CA] Because Joan obviously was such an immense influence on you, do you see your lives and careers aligning in any ways? [KG] I see our careers aligning in every way except stylistically. Joan was the master of the one-liners and the zingers; I am a lot more improvisational and conversational. Don’t think that I’m really gonna be doing Joan’s style of comedy, because one of the reasons we got along so well is that we were never competitors in any way. First of all, she was a fucking living legend, an icon, and I’m just me. But in addition to that, we had a deep understanding — and this is very inside baseball — that stylistically, she was in her lane and I’m in my lane, and that’s what’s gonna happen on “Fashion Police.” I’m gonna do what I do. I am off the cuff and take-noprisoners, and in that way we shared a philosophy, but stylistically we’re actually quite different. As far as our careers aligning, yeah, of course. I mean, the struggles. And one of the reasons I loved her so was, I’ve never seen anyone in my career have to fight so hard on their own. And this is no disrespect to my representatives, etc., but one thing I always admired about Joan and that we share is, I never had a Lorne Michaels, I never had a studio head take me by the hand and say, “Here, I’m gonna set up an environment for you.” That’s why my show was called “My Life on the D-List,” and that’s why my talk show — I had a blast, but it was canceled after two years. It’s been a struggle for me, and that’s just my road. So when I look at Joan, I look at someone that struggled and it really paid off, and it paid off in so many ways. What I learned from her is something that is just my story as well, and it’s not everybody’s story, but it’s — you’ve got to have your tentacles everywhere. What was so great about Joan was the QVC line and the reality show with Melissa [Rivers] and “Fashion Police” and touring. We would often talk about how that’s just the way it is for us; it’s not just gonna be the one job where then we have summers off and we flip houses and we have our gifted children that go to school with other celebrity children. We’re just workhorses. So, that’s the way I roll, and that’s the only thing I know. I’ve come to actually really love it. [CA] You’ve said that Joan, before she died, passed the “Fashion Police” torch onto you. How so? What was the context of that conversation? [KG] Besides the fact that she literally said it to me at dinner one time? I mean, we used to talk about death all the time, which is very common for comedians. It might sound maca-

The cast of Fashion Police (l to r) Brad Goretski, Kelly Osbourne, Griffin and Giuliana Rancic (Courtesy E! Entertainment) bre, but we talked about everything under the sun, and we would joke about everything, and nothing was ever off-limits and nothing was ever off the table. She did, in fact, make all these jokes [about], “If anything happened to me …” She would say, “If Jennifer Lawrence ever kills me, you should take over ‘Fashion Police,’” and I would say, “If Demi Lovato ever kills me, you can take over my one-nighter at such-and-such center.” Stuff like that. We discussed a wide array of things, but certainly the thing we discussed probably more than anything was, I would say, “Who was your Joan Rivers?” She would say, “Look, for a long time Phyllis Diller and I were linked, but the truth is, Phyllis was kind of the only girl in certain clubs.” She said, “Phyllis was a little older, so she paved the way for me and, of course, there’s Moms Mabley and Totie Fields.” And, for me, that person was Joan. So when I say I lost my person, that’s really what I mean. As much as I’m a fan of all the comedy girls and I am a comedy girl fan, I am not a competitor. Everybody has a different story, so, for some reason, Joan is the one that I connected with the most, [especially] as far as, “What are you in trouble for this week?!” and always laughing through it and never really feeling like it was like real trouble. We used to say, “Are you in real trouble or ‘Hollywood trouble’?” And it was always Hollywood trouble. Through her example, and whether or not it’s to my detriment, I really did learn not to give a fuck. [CA] Regarding the skepticism of your role as host of “Fashion Police” — how do you respond to the naysayers who doubt you know anything about fashion? [KG] First of all, I would say that I really did have a fashion evolution, and what’s so funny about that is, and I actually talk about it in one of my specials, it’s called a “gay mission.” When I started out on “Suddenly Susan” I would turn to Brooke Shields and say, “You know all these people who can give me an outfit for a day!” I was on the worst dressed list and then stylist Robert Verdi came into my life and he said, “That’s it. I’m making this a gay mission. I just think, because of who you are — a wacky comedian — you need to be out there in labels. I don’t think you’re Eva Longoria where you can be putting designers on the map. You’re someone that needs to be out there in Oscar de la Renta, Carolina Herrera, Michael Kors and Dolce & Gabbana. If you look at my red carpet stuff over the last couple of years, that’s all I’m in. So, it’s been an evolution for me, and it’s been a learning process that I love. I love getting to know these

designers, and I do legitimately love fashion. And so I am learning and continue to learn and I love the artistry of it, but I’m always gonna make fun of it. I’m gonna bring the hammer down no matter how amazing these designers are. [CA] You wouldn’t be Kathy Griffin if you didn’t. [KG] I’m gonna be the Tom DeLay of “Fashion Police,” except without serving the prison time, and I’m not a conservative. Someone’s gotta bring the hammer down, and “Fashion Police” is still the go-to destination to see who’s gonna really tell it like it is about who was best and worst dressed. I mean, it’s “Fashion Police,” but it’s not all gonna be limited to fashion; it may be for the others (on the panel), but as far as when it’s time to infuse the comedy and the ridiculousness, that’s my job. They’re actually identifying it now as a comedy show. They didn’t hire me to really be a fashionista. I love fashion, but they hired me to really be the funny one and be the brutally honest one, and also brutally kind whenever it warrants. Just like my act, I never know what I’m gonna say. [CA] Of everything you’ve done — books, television, and now “Fashion Police” — where does standup rank for you at this point in your career? [KG] No. 1 always. First and foremost. And I’ll tell you why: It’s the fuel for everything. I actually believe that as a nation, if not world, we are on the verge of some sort of return to legitimacy. What I mean by that is, with everybody lip-syncing, you actually notice a real-live singer and you can’t help but notice it whether you’re looking at them on Vine or on an old-fashioned television or live or

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at a movie star who’s talented versus some dumbass reality star. I’m in the business of comedy, and I have two Emmys and a Grammy and the Guinness World Record [for having the most televised comedy specials], and I am performing at the Kennedy Center and have performed at Carnegie Hall and Sydney Opera House, and so standup is always gonna be No. 1 for me because no matter what sort of trendy device for finding our art exists, nothing can ever replace the live experience. I mean, I have literally played bus stops in Oklahoma and people know the real deal versus, you know, somebody who doesn’t know how to bring it. That’s why standup is always gonna be No. 1 for me, because that live experience can’t be faked. You cannot lip sync a comedy show. You can’t do them in seven seconds. You can’t Instagram it. You can’t edit it. The live experience is still gonna be the most pure artistically. It’s where I rea-a-aally don’t hold back. I mean, “Fashion Police” is gonna be — I’m gonna try to get fired, let’s face it. I’m gonna try to say something so heinous I get fired — same with any talk-show appearance — but honestly, the live experience, it’s the one place you can’t get fired. [CA] Being that I’m a gay man, I’m naturally concerned about Cher, one of your BFFs. How is she doing health-wise? Is she better? [KG] She is! She just texted me last night and she hit me right back and she’s feeling better. It’s funny, I reached out for the same reason you did: I was like, “I’m a gay man and I need to know,” and she was like [in Cher voice], “I’m feelin’ a lot betta.” She texted me back in seconds. If she’s able to text me back within five seconds, I’m thinkin’ that’s a good sign. And of course she stuck in some emojis, which I think is an even better sign. [CA] Which emoji did she send? [KG] She did two lips — kisses. [CA] Good. I’d be concerned if she did “happy poop.” [KG] [Laughs] Six of one and half dozen of the other — they’re both good emojis from Cher. [CA] Lastly, Kathy, if you could turn back time … ? [KG] I would have slept with Anderson Cooper for the one week he was heterosexual during his 21st birthday. I tried everything in the book, trust me, and it just wouldn’t happen. I tried everything short of the Cosby. —Chris Azzopardi is the editor of Q Syndicate, the international LGBT wire service. Reach him via his website at chris-azzopardi.com.t


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GAY SAN DIEGO Jan. 23-Feb. 5, 2015

SPORTS

Wild sports weekend in Las Vegas Dugout Chatter Jeff Praught I had the pleasure of attending the annual Sin City Shootout in Las Vegas over the Martin Luther King holiday weekend. I brought along the Flicks Fireballs, the D Division softball team that I coach, as we competed against 41 other teams in a two-day tournament. As is typical with any travel tournament, softball was only part of the tale. The Sin City Shootout is not just about softball. In fact, 18 different sports hold competitions. They range from flag football, bridge, golf, and even wrestling. There really is something for any athlete of any age to compete in. Competitors usually stay at the host hotel, which has been the Tropicana Hotel for the last few years, and with over 6,000 participants in one place, the hotel morphs into one giant LGBT party. The Friday night registration party kicked off the weekend, as almost everyone who had arrived into Las Vegas went into the Tropicana ballroom to show their ID and sign in, enjoy a few cocktails, and enjoy the party entertainment. Walking around the registration party is always fun, because everyone arrives in town with the hopes of a championship, as well as winning money at the casinos. Enthusiasm is high and athletes haven’t sustained any injuries yet. Plus the tournament provides discounts for players at various bars during each night of the event as well. Softball was our game, with four A teams, 22 B teams, 70 C teams, and the aforementioned 42 teams in D of the “open” brackets. There were also 43 teams competing in the women’s brackets across three divisions. All told, 181 teams competed in just this one sport, making it only slightly smaller than the annual NAGAAA World Series. Last year, my Fireballs had just formed

and the Vegas tournament was our first as a new team. We did not do so well, losing all four games, including two by a mercy rule; but 2015 proved a huge turnaround for my boys. We were one of 14 teams to win both of our Saturday morning pool play games, as we defeated teams from Sacramento (18 – 12) and Atlanta (12 – 7). Because there were so many teams playing, most D teams endured a long delay before the double elimination portion of the tournament

temperatures. Flicks was uncustomarily shut out in each of its first three innings, though Carolina only held a 6-0 lead through four. We came back to tie the game as time was running out, but the Xtreme staged their own six-run rally in the final inning, and we lost 12 – 6. More than the conditions, we were just not able to withstand their strong hitting display, as six different batters belted balls that hit the fence (unusual in the beginner D division). And, when you don’t score, you don’t win. Still proud of our play that day, the Fireballs gathered in our sponsor’s penthouse for a fantastic evening of food and beverages with members of all San Diego teams in attendance. The social

The Flicks Fireballs took 16th out of 42 teams in Las Vegas. (Courtesy Josh Ramirez) began Saturday afternoon, and we didn’t end up taking the field until after 6 p.m., when the sun had long since set and the temperatures plummeted into the mid-40s. Our first opponent, the Carolina Xtreme, may have been more accustomed to the cool

gathering allowed players from different teams to all get to know each other better, not deal with the hassle of dressing up for bars or arranging transportation, and generally being able to relax in our hotel. Our Sunday began with a 9 a.m. game,

gay-sd.com knowing that we needed to keep winning to avoid elimination. And win, we did. We opened with an 18 – 3 drubbing of the St. Louis Chipmunks, thanks to a nine-run first inning and terrific defense. We then took the field right away to take on the fourth-seeded San Francisco Xtreme, who came into the game having won four of its first five games. That didn’t phase us, as we again run-ruled our opponent, this time by a score of 15 – 5. After an hour break, we took the field against the fifth-seeded Houston Knights. Whether the break tired us out, or we just came out flat, the Fireballs just didn’t have it, as we lost 12 – 1 in an error-filled, ugly game. We had several base runners but just couldn’t get the big hit to produce rallies. Still, a 4-2 record in this tournament, against strong teams, is something everyone was very proud of. We also had just 11 players on the roster and each of them chipped in with either strong offense or good defense. Anytime a manager can look each of his players in the eyes and tell them that they played well and contributed to the team’s success, it’s a good feeling. We left Vegas tied for 16th out of 42 teams, but really proud of our effort. Speaking of teams who should feel proud, I cannot express enough congratulations to the San Diego Spikes of the B division, who won the tournament title. Beating out 21 other teams in B, a division that is notoriously stacked in this tournament, is just as difficult as winning a World Series title. Evan Morris, David Lewis, and the Spikes are terrific competitors, and my hat is off to them for this achievement. In the C division, we said goodbye to the Outlaws, who played their final tournament together as a team. This squad has sat near or at the top of the C Division for several years, battling the Flicks Lawmen in many classic races. Led by manager and all-around great guy Randy Miller, the Outlaws made the 2015 Sin City Shootout one to remember. They won the tournament in 2014, and were looking at an early departure this year after losing their first double elimination game. But this team’s mettle has never been in question. Sure enough, they

see Wild Sports, pg 19


FEATURE

gay-sd.com FROM PAGE 18

FROM PAGE 1

won eight consecutive games on Sunday before finally falling. Winning eight games is tough enough, but to do it in the same day takes a grueling toll on your body. The Outlaws finished in third place, and ended their team run in style. Congratulations to the Flicks Lawmen, who took sixth in C as well. One other team deserves some credit for what they went through over the weekend: the Firestorm. First, the fact that they went undefeated in pool play is a credit to this up-and-coming young team that is just learning how to win. But they also went out and won a game after one of their players, Mike Petracca, suffered a devastating head injury. Taking the field after seeing your fallen teammate ride away in an ambulance is tough enough, but to win the game behind a terrific pitching performance from David Pence is just remarkable. Mike has a long road to recovery ahead of him, and he has the full support of his softball family behind him. A good friend of mine and an avid Padres fan, Mike will need lots of help along the way, and we will be using social media to promote benefits that will be established to help his family with medical expenses. Thanks to the heroics of Brian Burnett and Michael Stewart, that process is already underway. A few San Diego teams will participate in an early-February tournament in Palm Springs, but for most, the next softball action will be the ultra-competitive AFCSL spring season, which begins March 8. New players who want to find a team should visit afcsl.org immediately and register, so they do not miss sign-ups.

and that is why he chose to feature trans actresses (Trace Lysette, Dina Marie, Victoria Beltran and Bailey Jay) in the “American Dream” music video. “[Transgender people] represent the larger idea that the American dream is something within,” Fusari stated. “Like when Glinda the Good Witch says to Dorothy after she clicks her ruby slippers, ‘You’ve always had the power,’ pre-transitional [transgender people] know they have to fight to release the truth that hides beneath the uniform the world forces them to wear. The moment we each find our own personal ‘I have to’ is when life really begins. The trans actresses signify that real life dream come true.” Thus far, Fusari has had a very successful career, producing smash hits for Destiny’s Child, Whitney Houston, Will Smith, and Lady Gaga. In fact, he produced and co-wrote five songs on Gaga’s “The Fame” album, including “Paparazzi,” but something seemed to be missing. “On the outside it seemed like I had everything but I was never able to understand or accept certain elements that existed inside me,” he stated. Earlier this week, Fusari took a few moments to share with Gay San Diego what led to the creation of his alter ego. “The inspiration [for Cary NoKey] came from a very dark time in my life when the love of music for me hung in the balance,” he said. “The Gaga project had gotten so big that it started to turn on me. Something that was so fulfilling to be a part of creatively had turned into a monster.” He said during that time he had met many new artists, all who “wanted to be the ‘next Gaga,’” and though he was eager to produce someone who could top her talent, the “superstar element” just wasn’t there. “One day in 2013 I had done something that I had not done in a long time, I wrote a song just to write a song,” he said. “I wasn’t interested in having another artist record it because I really did not know anyone who could perform it the way I envisioned it, so I recorded the vocal. “The night I recorded the vocal was like being reborn,” he continued. “I wasn’t Rob Fusari after that night — I became Cary NoKey.” When asked to describe his new persona, he said NoKey is “the son of Liberace and David Bowie and Cher is the Godmother.”

WILDSPORTS

—Jeff Praught is actively involved in the LGBT sports community, having participated in softball, basketball, football and pool as a player, serving on AFCSL’s board, and currently serving as the commissioner of SD Hoops. He can be reached at dugoutchatter@ gmail.com.t

GoFundMike Carlsbad resident and AFCSL member Mike Petracca was seriously injured at the Sin City Shootout Sports Event in Las Vegas over MLK weekend. A “recover fund” has been set up in his honor at gofundme.com/mikepetracca. So far 482 donations have been pledged for a total of $33,415 with a goal of $50k.

DRAG

Cary NoKey. (Courtesy Project Publicity) He said he is proud to perform as Cary NoKey, to give voice to creative expression in the music industry, especially with the platform that RuPaul’s enterprise provides. “One of the things that is so fulfilling about being part of the RuPaul Drag Race tour is that it opens a window that never really has been touched before revealing a natural acceptance of the drag /trans community in pop culture,” he said.

GAY SAN DIEGO Jan. 23-Feb. 5, 2015 While he agreed much progress has been made, Fusari recognizes there is so much more work to do. “Unfortunately, that work will never really end,” he said. “A good amount of people in our society are still narrow minded in so many ways. They believe the way they choose to live is the only way and that someone who walks a different path, someone who feels a different way, someone who does not dress or behave like them is just not accepted. “It’s like I always say, ‘narrow mind equals narrow life,’ which in turn means ... limited,” he said. “And we all know greatness never comes with restrictions and limits.” Fusari said he is excited to bring Cary NoKey back to San Diego for the tour stop, as he has

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performed before at Harrah’s Rincon, and Rich’s Nightclub. “We had such a blast last time we were in San Diego,” he said. “There is definitely a strong culture for the arts in San Diego — so I feel right at home. It’s my kind of town and definitely my kind of people.” Cary NoKey will perform as part of “RuPaul’s Drag Race: Battle of the Seasons” tour on Thursday, Feb. 5 at 8 p.m. at House of Blues San Diego, located at 1055 Fifth Ave., Downtown. The show, hosted by Michelle Visage, will also feature Alaska 5000, Bianca Del Rio, Courtney Act, Ivy Winters, Manila Luzon, Raja, and Sharon Needles. Tickets start at $40 and can be purchased online at hob.com/sandiego. —George Vernon is a local freelance writer. He can be reached at georgevernon76@gmail.com. t


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GAY SAN DIEGO Jan. 23-Feb. 5, 2015

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