Volume 5 Issue 8 April 18–May 1, 2014
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An unknown gem
Pg. 3 Saturday, April 19
SERVING OUR LGBT COMMUNITY
100 percent love
Viva la Vegas A different kind of Dinah in a different kind of desert Morgan M. Hurley | GSD Editor
For many, DOFL is all about the heart
Nicole Murray-Ramirez, and with the support of the Imperial Court de San Diego and The Center, it was created in 2004. After Friday night’s event, 56 people have now been inducted onto the Wall of Honor, which is located in the same auditorium where the ceremony took place. The atmosphere of the evening was celebratory, as friends, family members, and other interested community members came together to celebrate the inductees: Bill Beck and his partner in life and in business David Huskey; Pat Cluchey; Scott Fulkerson; John Graham; Peggy Heathers; former state senator Christine Kehoe and her partner Julie Warren; Susan Jester; Bob Lynn; and Al Smithson. Two other honorees, Queen Eddie Conlon and Scott Carlson, were inducted posthumously. All of the living inductees were present at the ceremony. Each received a commemorative medal presented by a friend, family or community member of their choice. They were also presented with their individual headshot
Producers extraordinaire Dr. Robin Gans and Sandy Sachs have been bringing the weekly entertainment and fun to women throughout the greater Los Angeles area and beyond, under the “Girl Bar” brand for 25 years. Where most lesbian bars have suffered and closed over that span of years, the Girl Bar formula has continued to thrive. It works because it produces special events and parties in a variety of existing locations, eliminating overhead and the need for a hefty daily till. Aside from hosting parties in other big cities across the nation, Gans and Sachs also took their brand to Palm Springs for 21 years. They co-produced the annual Dinah Shore Weekend along with Club Skirts for all but four of those years, before venturing off on their own in Palm Springs with a different event the same weekend. In 2011, the ladies decided a change was in order and they moved their brand to Sin City in 2012, creating a new weekend-long event for women in conjunction with Caesar’s Entertainment and the Los Angeles-based Truck Stop Girlz. Moving from the low desert to the high desert was a nobrainer for the power duo and although starting anew was initially intimidating and Sachs admits they held their breath on attendance, she said the change has served them well. “That first year we had no idea what to expect,” Sachs said of their first year in Vegas. “We were floored. It just really spoke to us after having been in Palm Springs for 21 years, that maybe it was time — for us, particularly — to make a change to do something different, to be creative. “A lot of our friends that have been coming [to Palm Springs] for years and years said,‘We love you guys but we just can’t do that any more.’” She said what they meant was, they couldn’t bear the increasing number of days of non-stop parties that could take even the youngest of attendees to the point of exhaustion. “But you’d be surprised, how with switching it to Vegas, people are rejuvenated, they are re-energized,” Sachs said. “They are really liking it, and they’re liking our shortened program. Not so many events. We are giving people time to do their own thing — it’s Vegas — there is plenty to do.” Sachs said when they decided to make the move, she and Gans and their staff asked themselves
see WallofHonor, pg 11
see DinahVegas, pg 18
Morgan M. Hurley | GSD Editor
On April 24, The San Diego LGBT Center will once again produce the local version of a nationwide program that helps fight against HIV and AIDS: Dining Out for Life. Over 80 local restaurants will be participating in this year’s event, which raises funds for The Center’s HIV and AIDS services and other programs. Each participating restaurant gives up a portion of their sales for that whole day; some are giving up 25 percent, many are giving up 50 percent, and one small local restaurant chain, The Mission, is giving up 100 percent. Though any large-scale fundraising efforts such as these are mostly autonomous as the people it benefits are generally faceless strangers, to many of the participants here in San Diego, their involvement goes well beyond altruistic fundraising, it is a labor of love. The three owners of The Mission — Thomas Fitzgerald, Deborah Helm and Fay Nakanishi — have
(l to r) Fay Nakanishi, Thomas Fitzpatrick and Deborah Helm in front of their North Park restaurant, The Mission. The restaurateurs are giving 100 percent of their proceeds to DOFL. (Courtesy The Mission restaurants) participated in DOFL for all eight of its years, but this is the second year in a row they are giving up all of their proceeds to offer support to those who are living with HIV/AIDS and to help eradicate the disease entirely. All three locations — Mis-
sion Beach, North Park and SoMA Downtown — will be participating, serving breakfast and lunch from 7 a.m. – 3 p.m. For Fitzgerald, his dedication to
see DOFL, pg 11
Index Opinion .…………………6 News Briefs ..……………7 Wedding Guide ...….….10 Calendar .………………14 Classifieds .……………16
(l to r) Honorees and partners Julie Warren and Christine Kehoe pose with Speaker-elect Toni Atkins who presented them with their awards. (Photo by Big Mike)
Tried and true The Center honors the architects of our community
George Vernon | Gay San Diego
The San Diego LGBT Community Center’s auditorium was packed Friday, April 11, as community members gathered to honor 13 pioneers who helped shape the local LGBT community in its earliest days. The honorees were inducted onto The Center’s Wall of Honor, one of the nation’s only public displays dedicated to commemorating and remembering important local LGBT community members. The wall was the brainchild of community activist
San Diego Community News Network
(l to r) Inductee Bob Lynn and his partner Kleon Howe (Photo by Big Mike)
GAY SAN DIEGO April 18–May 1, 2014
Guinn kicks off assessor campaign in North Park Manny Lopez | Gay San Diego Celebrating plans to become San Diego’s next County Assessor/Clerk/Recorder, consumer advocacy attorney Susan Guinn launched her campaign with a call to shine a light on current Assessor Ernie Dronenburg’s failure to perform on behalf of taxpayers, families and small businesses. A large group — that included gay activists, elected officials and members of the LGBT community — assembled in North Park on April 2 to lend support and voice their frustration with Dronenburg’s decision to file a petition in July 2013 asking the California Supreme Court to stop same-sex marriages. “It’s going to take all of us caring and understanding what the assessor’s office does,” Guinn told a crowd of over 100 people. “Gay marriage was not my motivation to run against Dronenburg; it was the impact that his challenge can have on his positions.” Guinn, an openly gay Democrat who has two sons with her partner, added that the office became very important to her when she realized that it could do what’s never been done before. “We can help under-resourced communities, businesses and families,” Guinn said. “We can get a fair deal for San Diegans and put money back into their pockets.” She pointed to hikes in fees over the last three years for such things as birth certificate copies, marriage licenses and document notarization, and asked those gathered, “Who does that impact?” adding that it all amounts to significant money everyone in San Diego must pay and primarily hurts those least able to afford it. “When I look around and see the waste that happens in the assessor’s office and the fact that Dronenburg is not reaching out to the communities that need him the most, then I think this cause we’re taking on is worth the
Supervisor Dave Roberts (left) speaks while Susan Guinn points toward the crowd during her campaign launch at URBN Coal Fired Pizza in North Park. (Photo by Manny Lopez) next four years of my life,” Guinn said. Among those in attendance was Francine Busby, head of the San Diego County Democratic Party, who acknowledged that as a countywide position, the race for the assessor’s office will be a large scale and challenging endeavor. She said that while the LGBT community has a large voting population, it’s not just about numbers. “San Diego has changed a lot and I think it’s changed because of the LGBT community organizing,” Busby said. “People who had never been politically active before became active. They met each other, contributed money and walked the precincts. It showed what people can do when they work together.” County Supervisor Dave Roberts called
Guinn a highly competent professional that has the legal skills and tax advocacy experience necessary to do the job. “I really believe that she is the best qualified person for the County of San Diego to be our clerk/recorder/assessor,” Roberts said. “I truly have not met anybody that has the capacity to understand the complexities of the office, and also the heart to do the right thing, and that’s why I’m strongly supporting her.” LGBT activist Linda Perine called upon members of the community to elect Guinn over Dronenburg. She said that he has clearly shown himself as not respectful of the rights of citizens who happen to be LGBT. “As LGBT members, we need to give her the kind of support and encouragement
that will put her over the top and make her win,” Perine said. “I’m calling out all of the LGBT people that were so active in supporting a Republican [referring to Mayor Kevin Faulconer] to come out and support an actual Democrat and LGBT member of the community over a homophobe.” Guinn has also garnered endorsements from Assembly Speaker-elect Toni Atkins, State Senator Christine Kehoe, Councilmember Marti Emerald and San Diego school board president Kevin Beiser. More information on Susan Guinn can be found at susanguinn.com. —A native New Yorker, Manny Lopez is a freelance journalist and photographer. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org
A glimpse into Taste of Hillcrest Morgan Hurley | GSD Editor Hutton Marshall | GSD Assistant Editor Rejoice! The Taste of Hillcrest is about to return to the “gayborhood” once again. On April 19, over 40 businesses will serve up treats that will hopefully turn tasters into regular patrons. While there are too many quality participants to profile here, we’ve assembled a few — many fresh faces, some off the beaten path, others oldies but goodies — that we recommend adding to your tasting bucket list for that day. Of course, our strongest recommendation is to try as many as possible, but remember you only have four hours. These are listed west to east. East Village Asian Diner 406 University Ave., Suite B Taste of Hillcrest offering: Omma’s Beef
With an interior that mirrors what a ‘50s diner might look like if it were set in a Japanese comic book series — plush red booth seating surrounded by stark white walls and action figures — East Village Asian Diner has plenty of originality to offer Hillcrest. Opening just this year on University Avenue, the diner’s original Encinitas location opened several years ago, fusing Korean cooking with the offcolor creativity of restaurateur and professionally trained chef Daniel Bohlen. Though its California spin on the traditional Korean “Monk’s Stone Pot” is its mainstay, East Village will be serving another one of its well-liked menu items, “Omma’s Beef”: sliced, marinated ribeye liberated by a small army of vegetables. The space, which formerly housed Pink Noodle, underwent a hefty remodel before opening and now serves a large number of beers on tap. So if you’re in the market for something to quench your thirst after trying Omma’s cooking, take a seat at the bar and enjoy the building’s newfound alcohol-pumping technology. Rockfire Grill 3803 Fifth Ave. Taste: Stuffed Fresh Artisan Flatbread
Rockfire Grill just opened in a Hillcrest location that has pretty much seen itself as a revolving door when it comes to dining establishments. If new co-owner Raj Syal has anything to do with it, that phenomenon will end right here.
Syal travels daily from Orange County to bring Hillcrest a unique combination of Middle Eastern cooking techniques and Westernstyle food, born from his European and Southeast Asian culinary training. His flatbreads are baked to order in his stone deck oven and are either stuffed, used for pizzas, sandwiches or even burgers. The meats and veggies are skewered and then hung upside down in his 900-degree rockfire grill, where they are smoked, baked and grilled all at once, making them extra flavorful, juicy and tender. Syal, who can’t help but exude his passion for food, calls his offerings “fresh, affordable, simple and satisfying.” Blue Ribbon Rustic Kitchen 530 University Ave. Taste: Blue Ribbon Butterscotch Pudding Quite possibly known best for their $5, $6, $7 & $8 happy hour soirée, this offshoot of North County’s The Craftsman and Blue Ribbon Artisan Pizza is indeed rustic but equally cozy on the inside. Its menu focuses on “farm to table handmade pasta” among other mouthwatering dishes that will satisfy both carnivores and vegetarians alike. Deep fried Brussels sprouts, short rib sliders, flatbreads and a number of pastas — all made in house — are just a few of their happy-hour and late-night options. Their full menu, which includes crudo, starters, soups and salads, plates, pastas and desserts, are just as enticing. The Blue Ribbon Butterscotch Pudding is a mighty combination of savory and sweet, with a layer of sea salt and caramel enveloping the not-toorich pudding, and it’s finished with Chantilly cream. Oscar’s Mexican Seafood 646 University Ave. Taste: Fisherman’s Stew
Having just popped up on the northeast side of Sixth and University avenues in early 2014, Oscar’s blends its south-of-theborder spices into some of San Diego’s staple seafood dishes, most notably, the fish taco. Originating in Pacific Beach with another location in La Jolla, this new Hillcrest location marks the enterprise’s furthest trek from the ocean, not counting the time spent bustling around the city in its previous incarnation as a food truck. This Oscar’s has an artsy, driftwood interior, lit by dangling Edison bulbs, a semi-open kitchen area and enough hot sauces and salsas to placate even the most masochistic of fire eaters. While they’ll be brewing up their Fisherman’s Stew for Taste of Hillcrest, stop by any other day of the week between 2:30 and 5:30 p.m., when fish tacos are only 99 cents. Bo’s Seafood Market and Grill 1040 University Ave. (Uptown Shopping Center) Taste: New England style Clam Chowder The owner of Bo’s Seafood Market and Grill was named after the original Bo, his maternal grand-
father, but the influence of both his grandfathers can be felt here. An abundance of fresh fish, generally from local sources, greets visitors daily from behind a large glass case. You may purchase by the pound or choose from one of Bo’s dine-in menu options, such as fish salads, sandwiches, tacos or grilled plates. No matter what you choose, your selection will be trimmed from the fresh offerings inside the case and then wrapped on the spot or cooked to your liking. Local craft beers on tap are also always on rotation. Bo’s popular clam chowder was the original Bo’s recipe and is made without the typical bacon, bacon grease or sherry found in most. Purists can ask for bacon crumbles, but this chowder definitely stands on its own. Wine Steals Hillcrest 1243 University Ave. Taste: One Love Red Bean Dip
Wine Steals – Urban Hillcrest was the first (opening in 2003) of what is now a three-store operation, with other locations in Liberty Station and Carlsbad. It is the most casual of the trio and arguably the most fun. Hillcrest manager Cat Evans recently introduced even more fun, with Trivia Tuesdays, more live music, and their new “Jamaica Me Crazy” Sundays from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. “Jamaica” fun includes tableside bellini, rum, poinsettia or mango madness punchbowls for up to eight people, along with Jamaican-influenced pizzas, salads, wraps and more. They will be introducing “Taste” attendees to Jamaica Me Crazy with samples of their One Love Red Bean Dip and a live reggae band on site. Hillcrest Brewing Company 1458 University Ave. Taste: Pizza Bites Hillcrest Brewing Company (HBC) isn’t as fresh faced as many of the other businesses listed here. It opened in the summer of 2012 under the mighty umbrella of Mo’s Universe (Baja Betty’s, Urban Mo’s, Gossip Grill) and it’s done well as the first LGBT Brewery in the world. HBC has a spectacular location as well. Built entirely out of reclaimed materials, it has a chandelier handmade with 97 bottles of beer (its maker was supposedly quite drowsy by the time it was finished) and its brewing facility, which churns out 60 gallons a month, is a sight to see as well. Presented by the Hillcrest Business Association, Taste of Hillcrest will include over 40 businesses spanning over 12 blocks on Saturday, April 19, from 12 – 4 p.m. Tickets are $30 and the Hillcrest Trolley will be available and free. Will call and day-of ticket sales will be conducted in the Rite Aid parking lot at the corner of Robinson and Fifth avenues. For more information and advance tickets, visit fabuloushillcrest.com.t
GAY SAN DIEGO April 18–May 1, 2014
GAY SAN DIEGO April 18–May 1, 2014
Conservative states rush to pass religious freedom bills in shop windows saying “no gays allowed.” Governor Brewer was quoted as stating that there didn’t seem to be much of an existing assault on religious freedoms as supporters of the bill claimed. This is not surprising because the only examples given were those of florists and bakers fined for refusing to take part in same-sex weddings. There doesn’t seem to be much of a middle ground on this issue. On one side people see protections against discrimination based on sexual orientation as an assault on religion. On the other, the LGBT community sees these religious freedom protection bills as poorly veiled attempts to legalize discrimination against the LGBT community. It would be nice if we could have a discussion to determine what society means by “protecting religious freedom.” When the Religious Freedom Restoration Act was passed in 1993, it had broad support from both parties. It does not appear as if they really agreed on what sorts of protections they were supporting. The rights of religious individuals need to have a clearly defined end. The New Mexico Supreme Court said it best: “In the marketplace of commerce ... [people must] leave space for other Americans who believe something different ... [I]t is the price of citizenship.” Thus, no matter what one person’s individual beliefs, they should not be used as a basis for discriminating against people who live in a way you disapprove of. The U.S. Supreme Court recently declined to hear the case of the New Mexico wedding photographer who was fined for refusing to photograph a same-sex wedding. This leaves the opinion of the New Mexico Supreme Court against the wedding photographer the final word on this case. I support religious freedom until it turns into a license to discriminate. At that point it becomes detestable, and some would even say bigotry. I hope as some of these religious freedom bills pass in conservative areas of the country they do not bring with them a wave of discrimination, because the LGBT community will not stand for it.
PAU L M C G U I R E LEGALLY LGBT
FL O D at / e rg or .o m rsd n te ar en Le ec .th ts en ev
The Center’s Dining Out for Life® San Diego
It seems curious why groups would oppose protecting religious freedom. After all, the Establishment Clause of the U.S. Constitution protects the rights of individuals to be free from government-imposed religion. Lately claims of religious freedom have been used to defend against claims of discrimination brought by same-sex couples. Few people would support forcing a Catholic priest to perform a same-sex wedding. But what about when a florist or a wedding photographer insists that their religious freedom is violated when they are fined for refusing to participate in a same-sex wedding. In California, we are lucky in that we have fairly solid protections against discrimination based on sexual orientation, gender identity, and gender expression. If a florist or baker decided to refuse service to a same-sex couple in California, they would be violating the law. The same is true in New Mexico and Washington state, where two cases have gotten national attention. Religious conservatives in other states see this as an opportunity to pass initiatives to strengthen religious freedom because to them, the religious business owner should be allowed to act according to his or her conscience. Over the past year we have seen numerous laws proposed in the name of protecting religious freedoms. Many of these laws have been labeled anti-gay because they appear to shield businesses from any consequences for refusing to serve a gay or lesbian customer, or firing a gay, lesbian, or transgender employee. Business groups who recognize that these bills create bad press and open the door to abuse have opposed some of the more broadly written bills. In February, Arizona governor Jan Brewer vetoed a similar bill after it was said passage would lead to signs
—Paul D. McGuire is an openly bisexual family law attorney in San Diego who assists families dealing with dissolution of marriage and domestic partnerships. He is a columnist for Gay San Diego and also writes a blog on family law and LGBT issues at paul-mcguire.com.t
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UC San Diego Center for AIDS Research turns 20
I A N M O RTO N
PROFILES IN ADVOCACY The year was 1994. AIDS had become the leading cause of death for all Americans ages 25 to 44. In March of that year, Tom Hanks was awarded the “Best Actor” Oscar for his role of Andrew Beckett, a lawyer with AIDS in the movie “Philadelphia.” In November, Pedro Zamora, a young gay man living with HIV, and a cast member of MTV’s popular “The Real World,” dies of AIDS complications at the age of 22. And in April of that same year, a pioneering group of investigators at UC San Diego made a decision to formally organize their efforts to combat HIV and formed the UC San Diego Center for AIDS Research (CFAR). UC San Diego has been the home of groundbreaking HIV/ AIDS investigations from the beginning of the epidemic. Nationally, the CFAR model serves as a template for the collaboration between institutes and investigators in the field of HIV/AIDS. In addition to the university, the UC San Diego CFAR includes VA San Diego Healthcare System, The Salk Institute, the Sanford-Burnham Medical Research Institute, The Scripps Research Institute, and the La Jolla Institute for Allergy and Immunology. Under the continued leadership of founding members such as Drs. Douglas Richman, Celsa Spina and John Guatelli, a new group of primary investigators are making their mark in the fight against HIV. Dr. Davey Smith, a protégé of Richman, spans clinical and translational HIV research. His domestic and international investigation includes understanding transmission patterns of HIV infection and formulating strategies to reduce infection risk. Smith’s groundbreaking work was awarded the 2012 NIDA Avant-Garde Award for HIV/AIDS Research. Dr. Susan Little, who completed her fellowship under Dr. John Guatelli, continues to be a visionary in developing San Diego’s HIV testing programs as well as a leading investigator in Acute and Early HIV Infection. Her work with these populations that are identified within the first few weeks of HIVinfection provides invaluable data that bolster efforts toward cure and vaccine investigation. CFAR Director, Dr. Douglas Richman, was ranked as the most frequently cited HIV author in the world in Science (Science 321:521, 2008) and this year, he was noted as one of the top 400 highly influential biomedical scientists by
see Advocacy, pg 5
gay-sd.com FROM PAGE 4
ADVOCACY the European Journal of Clinical Investigation. Achievements such as this make the UC San Diego CFAR a highly desired research institute for the next generation of HIV investigators. The UC San Diego CFAR is always looking forward, and their investigators maintain their commitment to training the crop of young talent in the field of HIV research. By welcoming individuals with fresh, new perspectives to synergize with experienced investigators, they continue to usher in advances in the treatment, prevention and, one day, the eradication of HIV. You can find a recent protégé of Richman, Assistant Professor and UCSD alumni Dr. Matthew Strain, working with investigators at the Martin Collaboratory: Toward an HIV-1 Cure. Dr. Rachel Schrier, working closely with Dr. Spina, focuses her efforts on the human immune response to HIV-infection and how that data can be applied toward cure and vaccine efforts. Dr. Sara Gianella Weibel, Associate Professor of Medicine, conducts her translational virology research under Dr. Davey Smith, increasing our understanding of HIV and aging, especially in populations that have achieved viral suppression. 2014 brings us to an interesting sort of “book end” to these 20 years. Individuals are living healthy lives with HIV. Athletes like Magic Johnson and Greg Louganis have put a “celebrity face” to the disease. At the 2014 Oscars, we saw both Matthew
COMMUNITY VOICES McConaughey and Jared Leto take home awards for their work in “The Dallas Buyers Club.” HIV has become a thread in the tapestry of U.S. history. While, through the work of researchers like these pioneers and emerging investigators, HIV has been transformed from a death sentence to a medically manageable chronic disease, there is still work to be done. In the United States, it is estimated that 20 percent of HIVinfected individuals do not know that they are infected, and they are responsible for nearly 50 percent of the approximately 50,000 new infections per year. While we have life-saving medications, only about 25 percent of those that know their HIV+ status are on therapy that reduces their viral loads to undetectable. Globally, HIV continues to ravage populations in resource-poor countries. Primary HIV investigators and the young minds they mentor are all key to the eradication of HIV in our lifetime. By investigating ways to stop HIV transmission, create vaccines and, eventually find the cure, their work ushers us toward a world without HIV. For more information about the UC San Diego Center for AIDS Research, visit cfar.ucsd. edu. ——Ian Morton has worked in the HIV field since 1994 when he began volunteering with AIDS Response Knoxville. He currently serves as outreach liaison for the AIDS Research Institute at UC San Diego. To nominate a person or organization to be featured in Profiles in Advocacy, please submit name, affiliation and contact information to email@example.com
‘This’ kind of sex
MICHAEL KIMMEL LIFE BEYOND THERAPY Dear Michael, Last week a friend of mine invited me to go with him to a sex party that he heard about on Adam4Adam. It was in someone’s hotel suite and there were a lot of naked men there. I’ve been to bathhouses before, but this was more intense. Guys were having sex with each other all over the place. There was no privacy anywhere and that made me uncomfortable. The worst part was that lots of the guys were having unsafe sex, even though there were jars of condoms available. What do you think of this kind of sex? —Like a Virgin in La Mesa Dear LAV: After receiving your email, I am curious what you mean by “this kind of sex”? Do you mean anonymous sex, public sex, or sex without condoms? However, before jumping into that, here’s my defini-
tion of good sex: Good sex is physically healthy (no one seroconverts or gets STDs as a result) as well as spiritually and psychologically healthy. You can tell you’ve had good sex because when it’s over, you feel good about yourself, your partner(s) and life in general. Good sex can happen anywhere: a bathhouse, sex party or bedroom. That’s the good news. The bad news is that good sex isn’t always easy to find. Sure, you can get off, but is that good sex? For many of my clients, anonymous sex isn’t very fulfilling. Sure, you get off, but often you feel lonelier and sadder than before. Good sex involves your heart, head and genitals. If your genitals are the only part of you really involved, then don’t be surprised if you feel a release of tension and then a letdown. You may feel lonelier than ever … this is your heart and head saying, “Hey, why didn’t you let us in on this?” When your heart, head and genitals are all involved, you have a good chance of experiencing what the Body Electric calls a full body orgasm and psychologist Wilhelm Reich called “orgastic potency.” This is sex at its best; it leaves us not only feeling in love with our partner(s) and with life, but also physically more alive than we were before. This is sex as a melting away of “you” and “me” and embracing “us.” Reich insists that you can’t go there alone, that the best sex needs to be between two people whose hearts are open to each other, their minds are secure enough to “surrender” to the other, and their genitals are highly aroused. Is a partner really necessary for good sex? From attending Body Electric workshops, I came away
GAY SAN DIEGO April 18–May 1, 2014
with the experience that, while great sex with another person is wonderful, you can also have a full body orgasm from conscious masturbation. I think Reich and Body Electric are both right: great sex can take many forms. Too much has been written about unsafe sex for me to have anything new to add. Unsafe sex is a choice we make. Rather than condemn people who don’t use condoms, it seems more helpful to use them ourselves and to encourage others to do the same. It’s great that the condoms were available at the sex party you described, so why didn’t everyone use them? Drugs? Alcohol? Denial? If you want privacy during sex, you probably won’t get it when having sex at a sex party. Some people enjoy watching and being watched, some don’t. We are all different — know yourself and take care of yourself so you can relax and enjoy good, safe sex. I applaud you for being open to trying new experiences. I don’t have any judgments about sex parties, bathhouses, orgies, threesomes, and so forth. I tell my clients that it’s not about the place or situation in which you have sex; it’s about the quality of the experience. Good sex is physically and mentally good for you and your partner(s) and great sex is something we can work toward, as often as possible. —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. Michael is currently accepting new clients. Contact him at 619-955-3311 or visit lifebeyondtherapy.com.t
GAY SAN DIEGO April 18–May 1, 2014
Correction The last issue of Gay San Diego dated April 4, 2014 was identified as Volume 5, Issue 6. However, it should have been identified as Volume 5, Issue 7. We regret the error.t
Letters SDSU President Elliot Hirshman is to be commended for making the Center a major priority [See “A Solid Foundation,” Vol. 5 Issue 7]. He’s only been president for less than two years and already he’s opened a Center and announced the first LGBT Studies major. Congratulations to Doug Case for making this one of his life’s missions. Please, everyone consider supporting the Center and SDSU’s LGBT students. —Robert DeKoven via gay-sd. comt
Why PrEP is a failure By Robert Brandon Sandor Since the mid-1990s and to this day, the HIV-negative community has stopped the spread of HIV simply by physically breaking the cycle of new HIV transmissions. During all that time, no HIV agency, organization, expert, professional or researcher has given the HIV-negative community credit for this monumental social and sexual behavioral change. There has not been any attempt to reach out to our HIV-negative gay youth and create a message of congratulations for a job well done. In fact, the only message coming from the HIV “experts” targeting our HIV-negative gay youth is: Get medicated on PrEP and be happy. (Editor’s Note: PrEP stands for Pre-Exposure Prophylaxis and is a new HIV prevention method that encourages high-risk HIV-negative people to take a daily pill to reduce their risk.) PrEP is a total failure and a worthless effort to cash in on an untapped cash cow — our HIV-negative gay youth. I will not tolerate this. • PrEP failed because it is not practical. Years of published articles and scientific reports stating that PrEP failed to gain national support are based on factual evidence; PrEP is simply not practical. One such article published in “The New Yorker” (See “Truvada and PrEP: Why is no one on the first treatment to prevent HIV?” by Christopher Glazek, Oct. 2013) stated: “The medical community’s reluctance to prescribe Truvada — and patients’ reluctance to request it — also stems from a bitter fight over the treatment. Critics have questioned PrEP’s safety, efficacy, and cost, and have accused the government of colluding with the drug manufacturer at PUBLISHER David Mannis (619) 961-1951 firstname.lastname@example.org
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the expense of public health.” (Editor’s Note: For a link to the NY article see gay-sd.com). Also, the supporters of PrEP state that the HIV-negative community is required to take PrEP daily for life, and wear condoms 100 percent of the time. Which begs one to ask the question: Is it the condom keeping you HIVnegative or PrEP? • PrEP failed because it is harmful. PrEP is Truvada and according to its own website, Truvada.com, there are serious side effects: “Too much lactic acid in your blood (lactic acidosis), which is a serious medical emergency. Serious liver problems. Your liver may become large and tender, and you may develop fat in your liver. You may be more likely to get lactic acidosis or serious liver problems if you are female, ver y overweight (obese), or have been taking Truvada for a long time. Worsening of hepatitis B (HBV) infection. If you also have HBV and take Truvada, your hepatitis may become worse if you stop taking Truvada. • PrEP failed because there is no need to take expensive medications with harmful side effects for something HIV-negative gay youth are doing now for free. One example is the national popularity of the disease and drug free revolution. This unique, community-driven, harm-reduction, HIV prevention strategy has been accepted since it was first introduced to the public back in the mid-1990s, with the formation of the nation’s first HIV-negative safe-sex environment, called “Boy Toys – NY”; a private sex party exclusively for HIV-negative gay young men, popularly known as “HIV-UB2 / Safe Sex Serosorting.” Choosing to remain HIV-negative and drug free (D&D Free) is a freedom of choice issue and a legal right supported by the U.S. government. If this is not true, then why are HIV-negative gay youth required to become HIV+ and hooked on “meth”? •PrEP failed because it does not address the root ele-
SALES & MARKETING INTERNS Hillary Hudson Michael Kean
ACCOUNTING Priscilla Umel-Martinez (619) 961-1962 email@example.com CONTRIBUTORS
Charlene Baldridge Michael Kimmel Paul McGuire Ian Morton Jeff Praught Frank Sabatini Jr. George Vernon Romen San Vincente
WEB DESIGN Kim Espinoza espinozawebworks.com firstname.lastname@example.org
OPINIONS/LETTERS Gay San Diego encourages letters to the editor and guest editorials. Please email both to email@example.com. Include phone number and address for verification. We reserve the right to edit letters and editorials for brevity and accuracy. Letters should be no longer than 350 words in length unless approved by staff editors. Letters and guest editorials do not necessarily reflect the views of the publisher or staff. SUBMISSIONS/NEWS TIPS Press releases and story ideas are welcome. Send press releases, tips, photos or story ideas to firstname.lastname@example.org. For breaking news and investigative story ideas contact the editor by phone or email. DISTRIBUTION GAY San Diego is distributed free, biweekly, every other Friday. COPYRIGHT 2013. All rights are reserved.
ment to achieve successful HIV prevention. Successful HIV prevention will be achieved when the HIV agencies, organizations, “experts” and “professionals” understand the core issue of HIV prevention and create a message focused for the target audience. PrEP failed because it does not focus on your desire and motivation to remain HIV-negative. In my booklet, “The Essential Sex Venue Etiquette And Resource Guide,” published in April of last year, I explain this phenomenon further. We consciously work to achieve consistency between our perceptions of self, our own behavior and feedback from the world around us. There is a way to change our perception of ourselves and our behavior if we choose to be consciously involved in learning, and have a desire to improve our actions. We have to be willing to go outside our comfort zone and challenge ourselves to see the situation differently. The time has come to keep the promise and take HIV prevention seriously. HIV prevention messages in the U.S. must change and adapt to the needs of today’s gay and bisexual youth, other wise the messages will become obsolete and worthless. • PrEP failed because it ignored almost 20 years of progress achieved by the HIV-negative community, and their desire to remain D&D Free by having safe sex with their own HIV status. — Robert Brandon Sandor is a New York City-based Air Force veteran, HIV activist, and author. He is founder of POZ4POZ.com and HIV-UB2.net, and the author of “The Essential Sex Venue Etiquette And Resource Guide,” Café Press, April 2013. He has been HIV+ since 1983. You can follow him on Twitter at @SayNO2HIV or YouTube “Serious HIV Prevention.” — For more information on PrEP, visit cdc.gov/hiv/ prevention/research/prep.t
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GAY NEWS BRIEFS OUT AT THE PARK TAILGATE TICKETS STILL AVAILABLE San Diego LGBT Pride will return to Petco Park for its annual Out at the Park event on Saturday, April 19, and while the tickets to sit in the designated area for the game are completely sold out, tickets to the Out at the Park tailgate party are still available. For $10, a tailgate ticket gets you a hot dog, chips and a drink, as well as admission to the party, which begins at 2:30 p.m. in Tailgate Park, the parking lot just east of Petco Park off of Park Blvd. and Tenth Ave. Though seats for the Out at the Park section are no longer available, general admission tickets for the 5:40 p.m. game where the Padres will take on the San Francisco Giants can still be purchased at padres.com. The San Diego Women’s Chorus will be singing the National Anthem to kickoff the game. Tickets for the tailgate party can be purchased at sdpride.com. For further info, contact Helen Leung at Helen@ sdpride.org or 619-297-7683 ext. 107. FILMOUT BRINGS ‘MEAN GIRLS’ TO NORTH PARK FilmOut San Diego and the recently revamped North Park Theatre will team up for a showing of “Mean Girls” on Wednesday, April 23. Written by Tina Fey, who also stars in the film alongside Lindsay Lohan, Mean Girls humorously details the drama and warfare found among high school cliques, while also touching on themes of independence and the challenges of LGBT teens. FilmOut San Diego’s mission is to enlighten, educate and entertain through showings of LGBT-themed films. To purchase tickets, call 619-2398836 or visit thenorthparktheatre.com. When ordering, use the code “FILMOUT” to receive the special $2 discount. The film starts at 7 p.m. with lobby doors opening at 6:15, and house doors at 6:40.
A CONVERSATION WITH JANET MOCK On May 1, New York Times bestselling author and transgender advocate Janet Mock will hold a Q&A followed by a book signing at UC San Diego’s Price Center Theatre. Mock is perhaps best known for advocating and detailing the struggles transgender girls and women face, following a 2011 profile in Marie Claire magazine, when she publicly proclaimed her identity as a transgender woman. In 2012, she started the popular hashtag, #girlslikeus, to encourage trans women to be open and visible about their gender identity. The “conversation” is free and open to the public. Parking will be available in the Gilman Parking Structure for $2 an hour or LotP406 for $1 an hour. For parking information and maps, visit parking.uscd.edu. For more information on the event, visit lgbt.ucsd.edu. HARVEY MILK’S LAUNCHES ‘SELFIE’ CONTEST Guests of Harvey Milk’s American Diner can enter to win up to $200 in food and drinks at the diner in their recently launched “selfie” competition. In an effort to create a deeper connection between the guests, friends and fans of Harvey’s, the diner has teamed up with Lynup, The Social Agency, to run a social media campaign in which guests can post selfies on Facebook, Twitter or Instagram. Participants can submit their photos through the contest app on Harvey’s Facebook page or by sharing it on Twitter or Instagram with the hashtag #SelfieAtHarveys. Friends and fans can vote for their favorite selfies and the winners will be selected based on the most votes received. First-, second- and thirdplace prizes are a $200, $100, or $50 Harvey’s gift card or a equal donation to Harvey Milk Foundation, respectively. The competition closes May 16. 25TH AIDS WALK WILL INCLUDE WEEKEND OF ACTIVITIES The San Diego LGBT Community Center has announced a new series of activities to be held in conjunction with the 25th annual
BUSINESS SPOTLIGHTS George Saadeh’s Wurts Interiors 1851 San Diego Ave. Suite 100A, San Diego, Ca 92110 619-293-3131 | wurtsinteriors.com It began as Wurts Contract Furnishers, Inc. in San Francisco, Calif. back in 1937. Established by Harold C. Wurts, the interior design company supplied residential and commercial interior design products such as floor coverings, bedding, appliances, office furniture, and window treatments. He moved the business to San Diego in 1955. In 1974, he sold the business to George and Carolyn Saadeh. The Saadehs brought vast floor covering experience from family-owned and operated carpet mills on the East Coast. The business was renamed “Wurts Interiors” that year. Over the years, George has known and worked with many San Diego leaders, icons, and local organizations such as the Lion’s Club Downtown. He is proud of the reputation he and his business have maintained by providing honest savings and outstanding work in a timely and efficient manner. George Saadeh’s Wurts Interiors is a full-service boutique interior design showroom with unique, hand-selected products that enables each customer to receive a true one-stop-shopping experience. George and his team treat each customer like family by providing personalized service that the warehouse stores just can’t: owner George Saadeh is personally involved with every job, big or small. Elegance, luxury, sophistication and style are the hallmarks of Wurts Interiors, and are why George Saadeh’s Wurts Interiors is the only choice for interior design. If you want quality products with honest everyday savings, visit George Saadeh’s Wurts Interiors.
AIDS Walk for 2014. The actual AIDS Walk & Run will take place on Sept. 27th, with additional community events and fundraisers happening throughout the weekend. This year’s walk will take a significantly larger focus on the heart of Hillcrest, with the event’s start and finish line located at the intersection of Normal and Harvey Milk St. An after-walk festival will take place on Normal St., underneath the rainbow pride flag. Event activities will include boot camp and zumba warm-up exercises, as well as cheerleader performances by the Francis Parker Cheerleaders and Cheer Elite. California State Assembly Speaker-elect Toni Atkins will be on hand for the opening ceremonies, alongside Council President Todd Gloria. There will also be an unfolding of the San Diego AIDS
GAY SAN DIEGO April 18–May 1, 2014 Quilt, and musical performances by The San Diego Gay Men’s Chorus and DJ Sandra Ware. “This is truly a milestone for our community, and symbolizes our longtime commitment to fighting this disease and supporting those impacted by it,” said San Diego LGBT Community Center Chief Executive Officer Delores A. Jacobs in a press release. “This community event would not have survived without the incredible dedication and generosity of countless numbers of volunteers, walkers, donors and staff and board members — many of whom have been people living with HIV — who have made it happen for 25 years.” The post-Walk activities will also include brunches and other events designed to raise additional funds for AIDS Walk. During AIDS Walk weekend, many
local restaurants and clubs will donate 25 percent or more of their day’s sales to AIDS Walk. This will allow community members to continue to show their support for those living with HIV/AIDS, support local businesses that support HIV/AIDS services and raise additional funds for local HIV/ AIDS service organizations. For more info visit AIDSWalkSD.org or contact Ian Johnson, director of special events, at email@example.com. GAY DAYS ON THE HORIZON IN PHOENIX The Arizona Grand Resort & Spa will be taken over with four days of fun-fueled events for the LGBT community from May 8 – 12, when Gay Days Arizona makes its
see Briefs, pg 8
GAY SAN DIEGO April 18–May 1, 2014
gay-sd.com FROM PAGE 7
BRIEFS inaugural touchdown. Originating in Orlando more than 24 years ago, it now attracts more than 160,000 each year to the Florida venue, and organizers expect that 10,000 will flock to the desert for this first year of festivities. For a limited time, Gay Days is offering a “stay and save” package that includes hotel and special access to weekend parties. For $139 per night for a king bedroom suite or $149 for two queens, guests will also receive two free passes to the Saturday night party and free admission to the Oasis Water Park and daily pool parties. Each hotel room can sleep up to six guests. The weekend offers 15 different Gay Days Arizona events, including daily pool parties, happy hours, nightly diversity dinners, drag queen bingo, a masqueradestyle dance party, and many other events throughout the weekend. Other events will be a 40-vendor “Taste of Gay Days” as well as a Diversity Cup Golf Tournament benefitting the Phoenix Pride Foundation. For more information, visit arizonagrandresort. com, gaydaysaz.com or find Gay Days Arizona on Facebook and Twitter. SUMMER COLLEGE CLASSES RESTORED The San Diego Community College District will offer summer college credit courses for the first time in five years. More that 1,000 classes will be offered at City, Mesa, and Miramar colleges at a fee of $46 a unit. In addition, San Diego Continuing Education will offer more than 2,000 free non-credit classes at its seven campuses in San Diego. Classes in high-demand areas such as allied health, basic skills, hospitality and consumer sciences, and career technical studies, will be among those being offered. The primary summer session is set for June 16 to Aug. 9, but three other sessions also will be held from May 27 to June 28, June 9 to Aug. 2, and June 30 to Aug. 2. Plans call for 436 summer courses to be offered at City College, 424 at Mesa College, and 204 at Miramar College. “After years budgetary belttightening, we take great pride in again offering summer courses that provide thousands of students the tools they need to get a timely, high-quality education, secure their degrees, and prepare for the workforce,” said Rich Grosch, president of SDCCD’s Board of Trustees. SDCCD was forced to stop offering summer courses as the recession led to $1.5 billion in state funding cuts for California Community Colleges. SDAFFL AND DIVERSIONARY TEAM UP TO RAISE FUNDS The San Diego American Flag Football League (SDAFFL) will team up with Diversionary Theatre on May 8 for a special fundraiser showing of “Thrill Me: The Leopold & Loeb Story.” Attendees may purchase tickets for the discounted price of $30, ten percent of which goes to the SDAFFL, one of the nation’s largest 7-on7 flag football leagues. “Trill Me” recounts the infamous, true tale of murderous couple Nathan Leopold and Richard Loeb, who embarked to commit the “perfect crime.” To purchase tickets, call 619-220-0097 or visit diversionary.org and enter the code, “THRILLFOOTBALL.”t
GAY SAN DIEGO April 18–May 1, 2014
(l to r) Berry crepes, tiramisu, and spaghetti Bolognese at Bernini’s Bistro (Photos by Frank Sabatini Jr.)
DINING WITH FRANK SABATINI JR.
hen a family member requested we celebrate her 18th birthday over Sunday brunch at a charming European-style restaurant in central La Jolla, I assumed a table had been reser ved. We were 16 strong. And the neighborhood was crawling with folks like us who had restrained from eating until the late morning. I learned upon arriving that Bernini’s Bistro doesn’t take midday reser vations, no matter how large the group. Though more surprising was that in less than 15 minutes we were seated comfortably with olive oil and warm focaccia bread under our chins and citrusy bloody Mar ys kissing some of our lips. Thanks to the birthday girl for leading us to Bernini’s, which she had visited and enjoyed previously with other relatives. (You’ve come a long way from chicken fingers and mac-n-cheese at places like Coco’s!) Most in our party had never heard of the place, despite the fact that it’s been around for 17 years. Located close to other hotspots such as Prepkitchen and The Cottage, the bistro is operated by Canadian transplants Hamdi Gumustekin and his wife Reyhan, who car ved out a cozy Old-World design from what was Bernini’s Coffeehouse before they took over. Brick walls mesh with stately wood molding and antique upholster y. Paintings by Hamdi of Marilyn Monroe, Marlon Brando, Johnny Depp and other luminaries hang throughout the dining areas, adding a whimsical, casual vibe to the space. On this busy morning, the front patio was
fully occupied and about a dozen patrons were taking their meals at the classically designed bar. Dishes from the breakfast and lunch menus were in the offing. My fork hit the plates of a few nearby tablemates in exchange for theirs twirling through my pasta Bolognese. The substantial portion yielded a savor y ragu of beef, celer y and carrots draped over lightly sauced spaghetti. It wasn’t the classic, decadent version made with the additions of pork and cream. But just as well since the clock hadn’t yet struck noon. Lemon-ricotta pancakes are a top seller, and we were able to taste both ingredients right off the bat. For those mourning the same pancakes that Farm House Café in University Heights ser ved before closing in Februar y, consider these your supreme consolation. A friend’s chilaquiles came with a four-ounce cut of skirt steak (carne asada style) and two eggs over-easy. The stacked tortilla chips, soaked in enchilada sauce and squiggled with sour cream, were ideally moist yet crunchy. And the thin sheet of meat was tender and mildly spiced. My favorite dish from the breakfast menu was the berr y crepes, unfortunately in difficult reach across the table. But I was able to snag a decent piece of the delicate crepe along with a plop of purple mascarpone cheese infused with pureed blueberries. In the meantime, little bowls of house-made raspberr y compote circulated our group. It’s a complimentar y offering for spreading onto toast, pancakes and
7550 FAY AVE. (LA JOLLA)
PRICES: BREAKFAST, $9.95 TO $13.95; LUNCH AND DINNER, $9.95 TO $27.95 even eggs, as a staffer recommended. Down yonder, others at the table chomped into eggs Diavola featuring grilled polenta cakes topped with poached eggs and pasilla sauce. Raves also emerged over the meat lover egg scramble, the lox Benedict and the half-pound Bernini’s cheddar burger using hormone-free Black Angus. The lunch menu caters particularly to heftier appetites and with pricier dishes such as filet mignon, chicken piccata and sage-spiked ravioli with butternut squash in Parmesan cream sauce. Dinner entrées differ slightly with more shellfish appearing in various pasta dishes.
Our lead waiter never missed a beat. Drinks were refilled regularly. Ever yone received their orders within minutes apart and empty plates were whisked away promptly — a miracle in my book considering that we descended on the bistro en masse with little warning. The kitchen sent out two thick slabs of tiramisu to honor the new adult in our clan, a thoughtful gesture that afforded ever yone a chance to sweeten their palates with the espresso and cocoa-dusted construct of spongy ladyfingers and mascarpone cheese. Although when doing so, some of us “elders” in the group couldn’t help but quietly acknowledge the phrase coined by late comedy writer Robert Orben: “The best birthdays are those that haven’t arrived yet.” —Frank Sabatini Jr. is the author of “Secret San Diego” (ECW Press), and began his local writing career two decades ago as a staf fer for the former San Diego Tribune. He has since covered the culinary scene and other subjects for various print and broadcast media outlets in the area. You can reach him at fsabatini@san. rr.com.t
SAN DIEGO 10 GAY April 18â€“May 1, 2014
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gay-sd.com FROM PAGE 1
WALLOFHONOR and a short biography describing their service to the community, both which were framed and will be placed on the Wall of Honor for visitors to the LGBT Center to see for years to come. State Assembly Speaker-elect Toni Atkins and City Council President Todd Gloria co-hosted the event, following remarks by Murray-Ramirez. Mayor Kevin Faulconer was also present, as he was asked by Jester to present her with her award. Before Faulconer came on stage, Murray-Ramirez noted that the mayor recently accepted a co-chair position with Mayors for the Freedom to Marry, which the audience responded to with a standing ovation. Faulconer follows in the footsteps of former mayor Jerry Sanders, another Republican, who helped found the coalition.
Faulconer told the crowd that events like the induction ceremony are vital and that it is “important that we honor and recognize those who have made an impact on our communities.” District Attorney Bonnie Dumanis and Councilmember Lorie Zapf were also in attendance at the event. The accomplishments of this year’s group of honorees span several decades of San Diego’s LGBT history, and represent many of the people who were responsible for the founding of some of the region’s major LGBT organizations, including The Center, the San Diego Women’s Chorus, AIDS Walk San Diego, and the Log Cabin Republicans of San Diego. Previous Wall of Honor ceremonies were held in 2004, 2005, 2006, 2007, and 2008, with 2014 being the first ceremony in six years. —George Vernon is a local freelance writer. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org
FROM PAGE 1
HIV/AIDS-related services and prevention programs is deeply personal. “I lived in New York City in my 20s during the 1980s and that’s when things all came about,” Fitzgerald said. “Just the stress of it, because back then any pimple or any bruise, anyone I knew would be like, ‘is this it?’ and be running to the doctor. One of the reasons I left New York was because the city got so depressing; I lost so many friends and acquaintances. Thank God I was very lucky.” Helm is equally devoted to the cause. “I started doing AIDS fundraising about 25 years ago,” she said. “Back then, we had to be very careful about how the events were named, in order to get any big sponsors behind it, there was so much stigma. The restaurant business was very hard hit in the 1990s, I was literally going to a funeral a month. “Things have gotten so much better, but there is still so much need,” Helm said. “HIV does not discriminate and there is growth in infection rates where you wouldn’t expect … Folks seem to think this thing is over ... you just take a pill and things are fine. Having been hit very close to home with HIV/AIDS, I know this is not the case.” “We’re very proud that we’re able to do this,” Fitzgerald said. “We’ve all been touched closely by it and the three of us have made a decision to support it until there is a cure and that is hopefully the goal.” Tim Klepeis, owner and chef of Adams Avenue Grill in University Heights, is not only giving 50 percent of his proceeds for April 24, but also Friday, Saturday, and Sunday, April 25 – 27. Klepeis participates to not only help others but to honor his best friend, Larry Dalen. Dalen, who is HIV positive, is humbled by his friend’s generosity, but isn’t surprised by it; Dalen said Klepeis has been giving him both his heart and his time for decades. “When Tim and I met, he in his late 20s me in my late 30s, running brought us together and bonded us,” Dalen said. “The friendship grew as we delivered meals for Mama’s Kitchen on Friday nights for many years together … I saw that this could be me one day needing this service. “The Center helped us when it seemed like it was time to write a will and I gave Tim power of attorney if something happened. Fortunately I remained healthy until 1996 when the ‘wasting syndrome’ hit me big time, but there
(l to r) Adams Avenue Grill owner and chef Tim Klepeis and his best friend, Larry Dalen, who is HIV positive and Klepeis’ inspiration for his generous DOFL participation. Top photo from 1992 and below from 2013 (Courtesy Larry Dalen) were new drugs and I regained my health. “Tim was my guardian angel through the medical visits and helping me to never lose hope,” Dalen said. “I am blessed to have him as BFF, and the community, The Center and DOFL is blessed that he has the generosity to share with them what he has given to me for so many years, his heart and his time.” Ambassadors are an integral part of the DOFL family, setting up tables, greeting customers, handing out stickers, coordinating raffles, and most importantly, raising awareness about DOFL, The Center and how the money is used. This will be Christie Talbott’s sixth year as an Ambassador and she’s served all of those years at Adams Avenue Grill. “I signed up with a friend whose mother had passed from AIDS when she was a child,” Talbott said. “I wanted to support her and I felt it was really important for people to see that it is not just the stereotypical gay men who get it, but that a lot of people are affected by it. “I also know a grandmother who has HIV. After her husband
passed and she was out in the dating scene, she contracted HIV at age 65,” she said. “So you know, that age group definitely sees it as just a gay man thing, and no one wants to talk about it, but I educate them about the support people can get.” Talbott, a high school special education teacher and a San Diego native, was raised Mormon and came out late in life. She looks forward to DOFL every year and will be working two shifts on April 24, lunch at Adams Avenue Grill and dinner at D Bar in Hillcrest with the Human Rights Campaign volunteers. “It’s just been a really positive experience,” she said. “You walk away at the end of the day and I just feel great; my cup is full, I know I did something good for the community in San Diego and I know the restaurants that I am at are thankful to have me there and they support the cause as well.” Dining Out for Life takes place April 24, nationwide. Local restaurants benefit the San Diego LGBT Center. For more information and a complete list of restaurants that are participating, visit thecentersd.org.t
GAY SAN DIEGO April 18–May 1, 2014
GAY SAN DIEGO April 18–May 1, 2014
Tricked Out I
n 2004 San Diego resident Bryant Hernandez read an article in the late Michael Portantino’s publication, San Diego Gay & Lesbian Times (shuttered in 2010). The piece concerned a 17-year-old kicked out of the house by his Georgia family for being gay. He hitchhiked with truckers to California, and winded up in San Diego, where he turned tricks to support himself until he contracted HIV. This true story became the basis for Hernandez’s one-act play, “Tricks,” which was produced in the Strawberry one-act play festival at New York’s Riant Theatre a decade ago. Hernandez subsequently augmented his work and the full-length version of “Tricks,” produced by Chronos Theatre Group, can be currently seen in its premiere at 10th Avenue Arts Center through April 27. Sandra Ruiz directs. Appropriately, the production is sponsored by Gay San Diego. A busy San Diego actor, the playwright portrays Hank, a middle-aged, closeted married man, and father of an 11-year-old daughter. Hank cruises gay boys in the park and eventually meets Daryl (adorable Jacob Narcy). All Hank wants is to wake up next to a man. All Daryl wants is someone to pay for his services, which escalate in price according to his performance.
The wheels grind slowly in the painful first act, during which Hank, an accountant, is gauche, nervous and hopeful as he reveals details of his life, a charade he continues for fear of losing his daughter. His wife hates him. We learn little of the brittle, avaricious Daryl, who urges Hank to come out. Hernandez writes funny dialogue here; for instance, Daryl asks Hank what he wants, and the inexperienced Hank does not know how to answer. “Are you a top or a bottom or are you versatile?” asks Daryl impatiently. “Versatile,” replies Hank. “Oh,” says Daryl. “You’re a bottom.” The relationship, based only on the need for sex and the need for money, remains unconsummated. Transitions take place in the dark between acts. Hank has come out, his wife has divorced him, and as is usually the case, turned his
(left) Jacob Narcy as Daryl parades around a couch on stage; (above) Narcy in a scene with playwright Bryant Hernandez, who plays Hank (Photos courtesy Bryant Hernandez)
now teenage daughter against him. He’s awaiting her arrival in a restaurant, when he meets Daryl, now a waiter, and they begin a sweet, sad friendship. Daryl reveals his background, dances on the sofa, and teaches Hank the finer points of oenology (he hails from wine country in “Tricks”). The two men and their tentative friendship — based on much more than sex and money — is the real heart of Hernandez’ play. The acting is scrupulous and endearing
in this act. The story has great potential. The viewer wants more — more of Daryl’s innate wisdom and practicality, more of Hank’s growth — a more complete treatment of the possibilities instead of the easy surprise ending. One hopes the playwright does not wait another ten years. — Charlene Baldridge has been writing about the arts since 1979. Her book “San Diego, Jewel of the California Coast” (Northland Publishing) is currently available in bookstores. She can be reached at email@example.com
Through April 27 10th Avenue Arts Center 930 10th Ave., Downtown Wed – Sat 8 p.m. Sun 2 p.m. Tickets $10 – $20 tricks.brownpapertickets.com
ENTERTAINMENT ROMEO SAN VINCENTE called “Interior. Church Pot Luck.”
James Franco goes ex-gay The whole Instagram thing where he may or may not have hit on a 17-year-old girl? Then the whole thing of how that might have been an elaborate hoax? Those were our favorite James Franco headlines of “then.” Our favorite James Franco headline of “now” is that he’s back to pretending to be gay, and also ex-gay — in movies, anyway. Currently on Broadway in “Of Mice and Men,” Franco’s headed back to films this summer in a new feature from Gus Van Sant. The untitled project is based on the experience of Michael Glatze, a gay activist who chose to live as heterosexual after a health scare and experiencing a religious conversion. Now married to a woman and living relatively quietly in the Midwest, Glatze once worked as a gay activist and for the staff of gay youth magazine “XY.” Van Sant and Franco will begin shooting this July for a 2015 release. We think it should be
Another Stonewall movie about Stonewall “Stonewall,” the 1995 indie hit starring Guillermo Diaz (“Scandal”), told the stories of a group of gay men who lived through that important historical uprising. Well, guess what? Now another movie about the Stonewall riots is on the way and it’s called “Stonewall,” too, because nobody has any ideas left in their heads. Or something. Acclaimed playwright/screenwriter Jon Robin Baitz (“The West Wing,” “Brothers and Sisters”) has penned the script and power-player Roland Emmerich (“Independence Day”) has signed on to direct. There’s no cast yet but we’ll keep you informed as that moves along. Regarding the title, we prefer something that shouts out to the drag queens and hustlers who actually did the fighting back, but maybe this is all about that synergy thing marketers talk about. As long as nobody has to fight aliens or the apocalypse we’ll be satisfied with any level of historical accuracy. Stiller’s “Magic Mike” phase “I Am Chippendale,” the film to be written and directed by Alan Ball (“Six Feet Under,” “True Blood”), will tell the outlandish life story of the late Somen “Steve” Banerjee, an immigrant who came to Los Angeles, pumped gas, then ran a nightclub that would evolve into the Chippendales brand, which sparked the male strip club craze of the 1980s. Adapting the screenplay from the Rodney Sheldon book, Ball is now in talks with Ben Stiller,
GAY SAN DIEGO April 18–May 1, 2014
DEEP INSIDE HOLLYWOOD who may sign on to play choreographer Nick de Noia, the man Banerjee was arrested for murdering in the late ’80s. More casting is in the works, so when we learn which young male actors will be taking off their clothes for this one, you’ll be dutifully informed. Madge’s on the job training Madonna’s first feature film as director, “Filth and Wisdom,” was so bad that the official publicity line now is that “it never existed.” Seriously, just check around the Internet for people calling 2011’s “W.E.” her directorial debut, as though saying it enough times will erase history. And unfortunately, though “W.E.” was leaps and bounds better than “Filth,” it, too, suffered a critical and commercial drubbing. Is that stopping Madonna from continuing her quest to make movies? Yeah, right, silly question. The Material Auteur will next shoot “Ade: A Love Story,” based on the novel by Rebecca Walker. In it, a college student falls in love with a young Swahili man and the two prepare to live together in Kenya, only to find their plans disrupted by civil war. Producer Bruce Cohen (“American Beauty,” “Silver Linings Playbook,” “Milk”) is in the middle of the financing stage, with a script to follow. But be sure of this: Ms. Ciccone doesn’t sit around letting people tell her she’s not good enough. She goes and does it. And at this rate, eventually she’ll make a film that people will want to watch.
just met a girl named Maria. Oh, all right, no, he hasn’t. He met her a long time ago, just like you did. And he fell in love with her, just like you did. In fact, the only difference between you and Steven Spielberg in this scenario is that you aren’t planning to remake Maria’s world, aka “West Side Stor y.” A long time ago, during that wild Cantonese musical number in “Temple of Doom,” maybe you thought, “What if Steven Spielberg made a musical?” Spielberg probably thought that himself. But nobody could have guessed he’d set his sights on remaking one of the most beloved musicals of all time. So … yeah … look, who knows, you know? It’s early days yet, still in the “he has expressed interest” stage, which means it might never happen. But then again it might. The man tends to do as he pleases. We’ll be waiting and watching — and hoping and praying he gets a different idea. Henson to be queen of Daniels’ “Empire” Academy Award-nominated actress Taraji P. Henson is return-
ing to television (or at least pilot season) with Lee Daniels for a new hip-hop-themed drama called “Empire.” It’ll star Terrence Howard, with whom Henson shared the big screen in “Hustle & Flow,” as Lucious Lyon, a hip-hop star and record label CEO; Henson will take the role of his ex-wife and former business partner “Cookie,” an ex-con ready to make a fresh start. Together they’ll navigate the business (Malik Yoba and “Precious” Gabourey Sidibe co-star, too) and family life as they deal with having a gay teenage son (Jussie Smollett). Created and produced by Daniels with Danny Strong and Brian Grazer, it can’t sail through the first round of TV draft picks fast enough, given the woeful lack of well-made African-American dramas on the tube, much less one as critically acclaimed as, say, “Breaking Bad” or “Mad Men.” And, no, that Tyler Perry soap opera doesn’t count. —Romeo San Vicente has therapeutically assisted a lot of ex-gays. Romeo. He can be reached care of this publication or at DeepInsideHollywood@qsyndicate.com.t
Steven Spielberg wants to make a musical you’ve already seen Maria, Steven Spielberg has
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GAY SAN DIEGO April 18–May 1, 2014
Friday, April 18
SD PRIDE HEADLINER ANNOUNCEMENT PARTY: San Diego Pride kicks off the 2014 pride season with a special headliner announcement event at Gossip Grill. Guests will hear about the 2014 Pride headliners as well as a sneak peak into what’s planned for this year’s celebrations. 9 p.m. – 2 a.m. 1220 University Ave. Sign up for the party list at sdpride.org/ parties.
Saturday, April 19
TASTE OF HILLCREST: Forty local Hillcrest businesses will open their doors to offer delectable bites for taste-goers to enjoy throughout the afternoon. View page 3 for GSD’s preview of the event. 12 – 4 p.m. Tickets are $30, or $35 day of. Tickets and info at fabuloushillcrest.com. LINE DANCING AT MOS: Kickers Country Western Dance Instruction will host free linedancing lessons from 7 – 8:30 p.m. at Urban Mos. 308 University Ave. HAVANA NIGHTS: #1 Fifth Ave. holds a night of Salsa, Cumbia, Merengue and Cuban Music, featuring Manny Cepeda and Orchestra. 8 p.m. 3845 Fifth Ave. OUT AT THE PARK: SD Pride hosts their annual Out at the Park event where the LGBT community shows their Pride at a San Diego Padres game. Tickets to sit in the special Out at the Park section during the game have sold out, but tickets to the tailgate beforehand can still be purchased at sdpride.org for $10. The game starts at 5:40. Tailgate begins at 2:30 in the southeast
gay-sd.com corner of the tailgate lot in Petco Park, 100 Park Blvd. General admission tickets to the game are available at padres.com.
Sunday, April 20
EASTER BRUNCH AT LIPS: Hope over to see the chicks at LIPS hide their bunnies. Brunch consists of a best Easter bonnet contest and a three-course lunch including mimosas, champagne or bloody marys. 11:30 a.m. & 2 p.m. $23.50. 3036 El Cajon Blvd. LLLAC ANNUAL 2014 EASTER BONNET SOCIAL: Live and Let Live Alano Club will hold its annual Easter fundraiser, which includes a full dinner and bonnet contests for both adults and children. Tickets are $15, or $10 for members. 1 – 4 p.m. 1730 Monroe Avenue, Suite C. Tickets and info at lllac.org.
Monday, April 21
BROKE ASS MONDAYS: Is your bank account reeling from the weekend? Urban MO’s offers $4 drink and appetizer specials all night. 2 p.m. – 2 a.m. 308 University Ave. RUPAUL’S DRAG RACE: Every Monday join Chad Michaels as host of the season six viewing party, starting at 9 p.m. on the big screens on the dance floor with extended happy hour. Sign up to be a Dueling Diva yourself — two contestants will compete each week at 10:30 p.m. — judged by the audience right after the show — until the end of the season. Urban MO’s, 308 University Ave. Visit urbanmos.com or call 619491-0400. To become a contestant, visit chadmichaels.com.
MY COUSIN VINNY: Movie Monday at Croce’s will feature “My Cousin Vinny” starring Joe Pesci. 7 p.m. Croce’s Park West. 2760 Fifth Ave.
Tuesday, April 22
U.S. VEGWEEK FUNDRAISER: As a part of U.S. VegWeek (April 21 – 27), Local Habit, an organic restaurant, will have a special vegan menu tonight and donate 20 percent of proceeds to Compassion Over Killing, an animal rights nonprofit. 5 – 10 p.m., 3827 Fifth Ave. MEET THE MAYOR: Mayor Kevin Faulconer will host a “Meet the Mayor” event at The Center to hear from the residents of City Council District 3. He will speak with San Diegans about his vision for the city and then listen to concerns and take questions from the audience. The Event is free and open to the public. 5 – 6:30 p.m. The San Diego LGBT Center. 3909 Center St. For more information visit facebook.com/ kevinfaulconer/events. KARAOKE WITH LAURA JANE: Join the fabulous and funny Laura Jane as she hosts her monthly Tuesday on Spin Karaoke from 6 – 11 p.m. Plus, full menu. Drink specials. Gossip Grill is now located at 1220 University Ave., in Hillcrest. For more info, visit gossipgrill.com. SPAGHETTI & SHOWTUNES: When was the last time you had an all-you-can-eat plate of fabulous spaghetti for a mere $6? Now that’s a bargain. 5 – 2 a.m. Urban MO’s, 308 University Ave. Visit urbanmos.com.
Wednesday, April 23
PICTIONARY: Come play with Tiger … and Sister Ida Know on the back patio. Match your skills, win fun prizes and raise money for a good causes. 7:30 – 10 p.m. #1 on Fifth Ave., 3845 Fifth Ave. DREAMGIRLS REVUE: Every Wednesday join Chad Michaels and the DreamGirls, followed by DJs spinning dance music. 7 – 9:30 p.m. $7. Urban MO’s, 308 University Ave. Visit urbanmos.com or call 619-491-0400.
Thursday, April 24
DINING OUT FOR LIFE SAN DIEGO: On the last Thursday of April each year, San Diegans have the opportunity to dine out to support the fight against AIDS. Nearly 100 generous restaurants throughout the county will donate between 25 – 100 percent of the evening’s
proceeds to benefit HIV / AIDS services and prevention programs at The Center. For more information, see the front page story of this issue or visit thecentersd.org.
Friday, April 25
TRANSGENERO 2000: Support group for the Latino/a transgender community. Open to all in the LGBT community, although meetings are primarily in Spanish. 5:30 – 7:30 p.m. The Center. 3909 Centre St. More info at thecentersd.org/ latinoservices.php THRILL ME: The infamous story of Leopold and Loeb, the couple that conspired to commit the perfect crime. Opening night. 8 p.m. Diversionary Theatre 4545 Park Blvd., #101, University Heights. Tickets visit Diversionary.org or call 619-220-0097. SAPPHIC CINEMA FREE MOVIE NIGHT: The Women’s Resource Center show a film about lesbian, bisexual, transgender and strong women at The Center. Free. 7 – 9:30 p.m. 3909 Centre St. More info at facebook.com/WRCSD
Saturday, April 26
PECULIAR PERCUSSION – AN EXPERIMENTAL DRUM EXTRAVAGANZA: In response to the San Deigo Experimental Guitar Show, San Diego’s top percussionists unite to break every rule. Those performing will be Nathan Hubbard, Brandon Relf, M.J. Stevens and Orgasmatron. 7 p.m. $5. All ages. Space 4 Art, 325 15th St.
Sunday, April 27
SING ALONG BRUNCH: Enjoy the new brunch menu while singing along with memorable pop culture tunes. 10 a.m. – 2 p.m. Gossip Grill, 1220 University Ave. GossipGrill.com
Monday, April 28
FRONT RUNNERS AND WALKERS: Meet every Mon & Wed at 6 p.m. and Sat at 8 a.m. at southeast corner of Laurel and Sixth avenues in Balboa Park. With close to 200 members in ages ranging from 23 to 72, you won’t be alone. For more info visit frsdweb.org or call 619-835-9131. MEET THE CHIEF: The Center hosts newly sworn-in Police Chief Shelley Zimmerman as she shares her vision for the police department and answers questions from the community. The event is free and open to the public. 6 – 7:30 p.m. The San Diego LGBT Center. 3909 Centre St.
Tuesday, April 29
AFTER WORK OFFROAD WITH RAINBOW CYCLISTS: Get rid of those midweek cobwebs. Ride locations vary throughout San Diego County. Call Bill Rountree at 858-467-1090 one or two days in advance of exact location. 5:30 – 8:30 p.m. More info at rainbowcyclists.org. LESBIAN MEET-UP: New weekly early morning business networking meeting, offering a chance to share and support each other’s business or passions. All lesbians in community are invited. 7:30 – 8:30 a.m. Caffe Calabria, 3933 30th St., North Park. NEWTON VINEYARD DINNER: Talking Tuesdays at Croce’s will feature a five-course dinner by Newton Vineyard Wine Makers Collection with wine pairings and a special presentation. 7 p.m. Expatriate Room at Croce’s Park West. 2760 Fifth Ave. $70 per person. For reservations, contact Sommolier Michael Simpson at 858-345-7379 or bestofhouse6@ gmail.com.
Wednesday, April 30
PICTIONARY: Come play with Tiger … and Sister Ida Know on the back patio. Match your skills, win fun prizes and raise money for a good causes. 7:30 – 10 p.m. #1 on Fifth Ave., 3845 Fifth Ave. GUYS, GAMES AND GRUB: A board game social extravaganza with pizza and other guys. 6:30 – 9:30 p.m. The Center, 3903 Centre St. Hillcrest. Learn more at Thecentersd.org.
Thursday, May 1
A CONVERSATION WITH JANET MOCK: UC San Diego’s LGBT Resource center hosts a conversation and book signing with best-selling author and transgender advocate Janet Mock. 7 p.m. Doors open at 6 p.m. FREE. UC San Diego Price Center Theatre, 9500 Gilman Drive. La Jolla. More info at lgbt. ucsd.edu. #LEZ AT RICH’S: The women are at Rich’s tonight for DJ Von Kiss, hot go go girls. 10 p.m. – 2 a.m. Rich’s is at 1051 University Ave., in Hillcrest. For more info, richssandiego.com/lez. MALE BOX NIGHT: While the girls are playing at Rich’s every Thursday, the boys are invited across the street to Gossip Grill. Specials and rotating DJs. 9 p.m. Gossip Grill is now located at 1220 University Ave. For more info, visit gossipgrill.com. —For inclusion in the calendar, email firstname.lastname@example.org
TURN THE OTHER CHEEK Across 1 What a knight takes to go clubbing? 5 Discombobulates 10 Vidal’s “Visit to a ___ Planet” 15 Camaro model 16 Have the hots for 17 One that can be paddled at the stern 18 Omar in “The Mod Squad” 19 Capote portrayer Robert 20 Actress Susan 21 Start of a comment on the death of Fred Phelps (Matthew 5) 24 This, to Luis Zapata 25 Erotic opening 26 Card game with tricks 28 The Queen and others 30 Studio workers 32 City burned in “Gone with the Wind” 35 Poet who inspired “Cats,” initially 36 More of the comment
40 It may top a queen 42 Whys and wherefores 43 Deserts 47 Less messy 51 Push over 52 Elton John Broadway musical 54 Salutation for Caesar 55 End of the comment 59 Make noise in bed 60 Place to become wife and wife 61 “When ___ said and done ...” 62 Lurer of phallic fish 63 Unexpected help 64 Travel around 65 Take by force 66 Chat room request 67 A. Lincoln, e.g. Down 1 “Patience and Sarah” author Isabel 2 Like an opera melody
Turn the Other Cheek solution on page 15 3 Truck lineup 4 Homo leader to toga-wearers? 5 How good friends get along 6 Deuce follower, for Mauresmo 7 The Gay Blade 8 Tongue of Wilde’s land 9 James Baldwin’s “The Evidence of Things Not ___ “ 10 Shrimp entree 11 Rages 12 Come before 13 Eases up 14 Spy novelist Deighton 22 Site where Franklin, Winston, and Josef came together 23 NY winter hrs. 27 U-turn from NNW 29 Rhine feeder 30 Drag queen’s leg scraper 31 “Nuts!” 33 Kinky coif
34 Coward of “Blithe Spirit” 36 Voyeur’s station 37 Banana source 38 “___ at time!” (No threesomes!) 39 Fed. retirement agency 40 Guy under J. Edgar, for short? 41 One who shares a deed 44 Future ferns 45 Trumpet player Herb 46 Pee-___ Herman 48 AIDS activist Elizabeth 49 Become men, perhaps 50 Gets more mileage out of 52 Allstate rival 53 Impotence confession 56 Butts 57 Strip under the futon 58 O.K. Corral gunfighter 59 Work under Edith Head, perhaps
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GAY SAN DIEGO April 18–May 1, 2014
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The Naked Truth About Karmin
more. But when they get up close they just freak out over Amy. Nick, have you ever taken your shirt off at Pride? Nick: I have. It was Phoenix Pride. Amy: Yeah, that was the night ... Nick: (Laughs) It was like 400 degrees and they kept chanting something and I couldn’t understand. Finally, after the third time, it was so loud that I could hear it through my earbuds and I was like, “All right, screw it.”
Duo on wanting a gay wedding, Nick’s bulge and the drag queens of Maine Chris Azzopardi | Q Syndicate Electro-pop duo Karmin got their big break on YouTube when they — ah, never mind. Go to Wikipedia if you want their bio. There are more pressing issues to address when Amy Heidemann, a former wedding singer, and Nick Noonan, who used to work at a boxing gym, get on the line: the pants Nick is unfortunately wearing on the cover of their second album, Amy’s hope for drag queen boobs and the gay wedding they’re planning. (Chris Azzopardi) Why isn’t Nick also “just” wearing his panties on the “Pulses” cover? Nick: Are you opening a can of worms right now? We joked that we were gonna switch for the next take, but it never happened. Amy: His bulge was so big that they Photoshopped pants back on. Nick: It’s quite the opposite of that, but whatever works. At least we know who’s wearing the pants ... So obviously you two are gonna make beautiful babies one day. Nick: Hopefully not for a number of years. How many? Nick: We’re gonna start the conversation in five. When you look in the mirror, do you see someone as hot as we do? Amy: You’re so sweet and absolutely not. Nick: Totally not. Amy: We’re always like we need to change our hair; we need to exercise more. There’s a lot of people looking at us now! Nick: We’re kind of nerds. What’s your favorite duo? Nick: Definitely Simon & Garfunkel. They’re at the top of my list. Amy: That was an inspiration when we started the band. Obviously, I’m Simon. Nick: I have the G-fro, so I’m Garfunkel.
Amy, you’re from Seward, Neb.; Nick, you’re from Old Town, Maine — both small towns. Did you know many gay people growing up? Amy: There was, like, one who was out in each of our high schools. Nick: There were a lot of kids we knew who were gay, but when we were in high school, which wasn’t that long ago, it was still an unspoken thing. Amy: Yeah, 2004 — nobody talked about it. You’ve done the Pride circuit. What’s that experience been like for you? I imagine there’s not a lot of drag queens in Old Town, Maine. Nick: (Laughs) Not that I know of. I’m not in the Maine drag circle, but maybe I could be! Amy: Maybe it’s pretty hopping! No — but we’ve gotten to see a fair share of people dressed as Amy from Karmin with suicide roll hair doing “Brokenhearted” at karaoke. Nick: Yeah, we are seeing a lot of clips of people in drag performing “I Want It All.” Amy: That’s our favorite, by far.
GAY SAN DIEGO April 18–May 1, 2014
Karmin is (l to r) Nick Noonan and Amy Heidermann. (Courtesy Epic Records) What’s it like seeing someone do you in drag, Amy? Amy: It’s very flattering. I get a little self-conscious because sometimes they look more attractive than I do. Better makeup. Better outfits. Better boobs. I need to shop where they shop. Well, concerning the boobs, they probably stuff. Nick: Oh, she does too, though. Who gets hit on more often at these Pride events? Amy: I guess a lot of people have a crush on me, but everybody’s always chanting for Nick to take his shirt off. Nick: Yeah, from a distance, me
So you two are planning on getting married sometime soon. With gay marriage sweeping the countr y, what are your thoughts on the progress we’re making? Nick: It’s happening all kind of at once, and there are minor setbacks like in Arizona, but that bill [allowing businesses to deny service to LGBT people] was vetoed by the governor. So there’s always gonna be two steps forward, one step back, but I think it’s kind of been an explosion over the last decade. It went from a taboo to Obama, a sitting president, saying he was for it, which had never happened before. My home state has already approved gay marriage and more will down the road. Amy: And I want our wedding to be a gay wedding. Gay weddings are more fun than straight weddings! “Pitch Perfect” is partly inspired by one of the album’s
singles, “Acapella.” If you could be any character in “Pitch Perfect,” who would you be? Amy: Fat Amy. That’s who I would wanna be, but I have a feeling I’d be Aubrey — over organized and kind of annoying. Nick: I’d be the Asian girl that nobody can understand. When has being a couple and working together — essentially seeing each other 24/7 — been a challenge? Amy: Every day. Nick: Yeah, it comes and goes, man. It’s real life when you can’t turn it off. The hardest part is that Karmin becomes bigger than Amy and Nick sometimes and that’s when stuff gets out of whack, so that’s been the biggest challenge. If you weren’t able to use YouTube as a platform for fame, what would have been your plan B? Nick: Sleeping around. Especially before. God, there must have been so much sleeping around before the Internet. Amy: Before YouTube I guess you had to sleep with everyone! Speaking of using your body to get ahead, Nick, remember: your shirt comes off at the next show I’m at. Nick: You are already off the guest list! —Chris Azzopardi is the editor of Q Syndicate, the international LGBT wire service. Reach him via his website at www.chris-azzopardi.com.t
events attheCenter tuesday, april 22
Monday, april 28
Meet the Mayor
Meet the Chief
5-6:30 pm, the Center
6-7:30 pm, the Center
On April 22, at The Center, Mayor Kevin Faulconer will host a “Meet the Mayor” event. He will speak with San Diegans about his vision for the City and then listen to concerns and take questions from the audience. The event is free and open to the public. The mayor plans to hold a “Meet the Mayor” event in every City Council district in the coming months. For more information, visit the Facebook event at www.facebook.com/ kevinfaulconer/events.
Join us in the Center auditorium as San Diego Police Chief Shelley Zimmerman shares her vision for the San Diego Police Department and answers questions on various community policing topics. Chief Zimmerman was promoted to Chief of Police on March 4, 2014, and is a 31-year veteran of the San Diego Police Department.
thursday, april 24
Is it fair to say you recognized a gay audience as soon as you hit YouTube?
Dining Out for Life® San Diego!
Nick: We didn’t recognize one. We didn’t really go out and think, “We’re gonna have the biggest gay audience.” It just kind of happened that way. We noticed when a lot of people from the gay community were gravitating toward our performance style. And you know, it’s amazing that we can stand up for something and have a voice. We were doing all these gay Pride events and those audiences actually kind of developed our performance style. It allowed us to be freer and, I mean, as cliché as it is — Amy: They’re the best audiences, for sure. Nick: For sure.
On the last Thursday in April each year, thousands of San Diegans Dine Out to Fight AIDS. Dining Out for Life® is an international fundraising event involving the generous participation of restaurants throughout the country. Restaurants and bars across San Diego (91 so far!) pledge to donate 25-100% of that day’s food and liquor sales to benefit HIV/AIDS services and prevention programs at The Center. Visit us at http://events.thecentersd.org/DOFL and check out the list of participating restaurants or find us on Facebook! www.facebook.com/DOFLSD.
Dining Out for Life®
thursday, april 24 thursday, May 22
harvey Milk Diversity Breakfast
www.thecentersd.org The San Diego LGBT Community Center 3909 Centre Street • 619-692-2077
GAY SAN DIEGO April 18–May 1, 2014
FROM PAGE 1
DINAHVEGAS the following question, “In a perfect world, what would you get rid of?” The answers were many and included things such as: no drink tickets, no “ginormous, expensive talent,” no set up, no uncertainties when it came to weather, and no second pool party. “Sunday morning sleep in is a huge thing,” she said. “People do ask why we don’t have two pool parties, but when you have a Saturday late night event, hitting the pool at 7 a.m. is just not doable. Even in our younger days it was a challenge.” At Dinah Vegas, there are plenty of events, but there is also plenty of time between events, giving attendees the luxury of enjoying all the other things that this booming metropolis of gambling, entertainment and “no last-calls” has to offer. “We are in Vegas, we don’t need to compete with everybody who is here,” Sachs said. “Britney Spears is at Planet Hollywood, Elton John is at Caesars. They want talent? They’ve got the best shows on earth right there in Vegas. We don’t need to compete with that.” But don’t let that fool you, there is still plenty of entertainment being produced by Girl Bar at Dinah Vegas. Cocktail parties, comedians, dance parties including a “white party” under the Eiffel Tower, plenty of Girl Bar go-go dancers, The Truck Stop Girlz, three different acts at poolside on Saturday and many of your favorite of DJs spinning music all weekend long at almost every event. “We brought back the comedy this year, because that is some-
thing our clients can’t get in Vegas, lesbian comedians,” Sachs said. The closing party, which takes place at Diablos Cantina, located in a rooftop bar overlooking the strip at 3770 S. Las Vegas Blvd., is still packed with fun, but it’s more of a low-key send off party rather than another rager. It starts with brunch and continues on throughout the afternoon with talented go-go dancers, popular DJs and great drink specials. Sachs’ favorite thing about the move to Vegas? “Oh My God, no setup,” she replied. “We spent thousands of dollars on trussing, bringing in sound and stages, and décor in Palm Springs. You can’t imagine how much money was spent and the hours and hours it takes to set all that stuff up. Here, we’re turn-key — we walk in and it’s ready.” Saving that kind of money on both entertainment and set up has allowed Dinah Vegas to keep prices appealing, Sachs said, and without contractual obligations that forced room rates through the roof, rooms at host hotel Flamingo are a bargain at $129 per night. And at 3,000 rooms, compared to former host hotels Gans and Sachs used in Palm Springs at 400 rooms, The Flamingo is huge, although to Vegas standards, it is on the smaller side. After better than expected numbers their first year, Caesar’s Entertainment, owner of The Flamingo Hotel, moved Dinah Vegas from the Beach Club Pool to the 15-acre Go Pool, more than twice the size of the previous pool. It’s expansive tropical setting includes waterfalls, a grotto area, expanded cabanas and day beds, and of course, flamingos. Year two saw double the
attendance, so the move to a larger pool area was prophetic. “We have cabanas that sell for $800 a piece per day that are sold out with a waiting list,” Sachs said. “The day beds are sold out. The canopies are sold out. Everything at the pool at the Flamingo is sold out.” The 14 cabanas at the Go Pool each fit up to 15 people and come with a 42” television, a mini-refrigerator, a safe, couches and more. Day beds are like a queen sized
(above, l to r) Dr. Robin Gans and Sandy Sachs, co-owners of Girl Bar, and Linda Fusco and Michelle Agnew of Truck Stop Girlz, high above Vegas at the Rio Hotel (Photo by Phil Lobeline); (left) the producers at a Dinah Vegas white party (Photo by Faye Sadou)
bed poolside for lounging. With more than 400 pool chairs available, in addition to the cabanas and day beds, in and around the Go Pool area, gone is the need to get up extra early to wait in long lines just to find a small area of cement near the pool to place your towel on. Sachs admits that despite the annual big name entertainment they always brought to the Palm Springs weekends, the pool parties were always the cornerstone of the annual event. But everything changed in 2004, the year the cable premiere of “The L Word” on Showtime. The entire last episode of season one focused on the cast enjoying Dinah Shore Weekend. What had always been a destination for West Coast lesbians and their friends sud-
denly became internationally known, and attendance has skyrocketed dramatically ever since. “It blew us out of the water, we didn’t even know what happened,” Sachs said, referring to the overwhelming number of women that showed up to the White Party in 2005. “I started literally walking up to people in line asking them questions. They said they saw it on the L Word. It was manageable, but we had to turn people away [because the fire marshall]. “I sent Ilene Chaiken flowers that year, thanking her for putting us on the map,” she continued. “They’d come the year before and filmed it, and it wasn’t even called “The L Word” then, but lots of people had filmed stuff over the years and it never panned out to anything.” Another big difference in the move was the date change. Settling on the last weekend in April was a promise for better weather. “That’s another thing we got to
get off of, was the [Kraft Nabisco LPGA] golf tournament,” she said. “Because it was always at the end of March or the first of April, sometimes we got good weather, sometimes not so much. It is amazing what a few weeks’ difference makes … the weather is guaranteed.” Sachs said she recalls standing on a Wyndham balcony in Palm Springs one year at the end of March, watching it hail. They had to move the pool party into the lobby. “It was always hit or miss,” she said. “Mostly good for sure.” All in all, Sachs has no regrets about leaving Palm Springs and appreciates the scale and opportunity for growth that Vegas offers. “We’re just in a different desert,” she said. Dinah Vegas takes place beginning Thursday, April 24 and runs through Sunday, April 27. For more information about Dinah Vegas, including the complete line-up, venues, host hotels, ticket and weekend pass prices, visit DinahShoreWeekend.com.t
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Basketball forges friendships. (Photo by Jeff Hammond)
Time for SD Hoops summer league San Diego’s first and only recreational basketball league for LGBT athletes and their friends just announced plans for its second annual summer league. Barring unprecedented interest in playing, SD Hoops will cap the league at six teams. The schedule will include playing each team twice during the regular season and at least one playoff game, which guarantees every player an opportunity to play in at least 11 games. Player fees will be just $60, making SD Hoops the best value among basketball leagues in San Diego, by far. Games will be played every Wednesday evening at 6, 7, and 8 p.m. at the Golden Hill Recreational Center. The first week of the regular season will be June 4, with playoffs beginning on August 13. Champions will be crowned on August 27. If interested, players should visit the league website at sdhoops.net and click on the registration page. Those who sign up will be taken on a first-come, first-served basis, though the league will do everything in its power not to exclude anyone. Players are also encouraged to attend league-sponsored Open Gym sessions in May, held each Wednesday, beginning May 4, from 6 – 8 p.m. Players are asked to bring light-
GAY SAN DIEGO April 18–May 1, 2014
and dark-colored shirts to play in, as well as $5 cash to help off-set the cost of renting the gym. Registered players who pay for summer league will have Open Gym fees waived. Coach John Crockett will be looking for his fourth consecutive league title, as he has led The Loft to championships in the previous two fall seasons, as well as last year’s inaugural summer league. This feat is impressive because teams are built through a coaches’ draft, guaranteeing that rosters are different every season. Using a draft system allows members of the SD Hoops “family” to essentially have the opportunity to play with just about everyone eventually, if they remain in the league long enough. I have been playing in SD Hoops since 2006 and not only have I teamed with just about every player myself, I have also been able to enjoy the highs (two titles, great team chemistry) and lows (a winless season). Members of this league tend to get along well and develop friendships off the court, so I highly recommend giving it a shot if you enjoy basketball, regardless of your skill level. If you pay, you play, and there is a lot of positive energy and encouragement out there. I say this with the obvious bias of being the league’s commissioner, and April marked the beginning of my fourth year holding the office. I am pleased to announce that our new board of officers includes Sereeta Jones as my assistant commissioner, Noah Ingram as community outreach coordinator, John Crockett as webmaster, Jeff Hammond as treasurer, and Marcus Lenihan as secretary.
ment. Pool play games are essentially warmup games that determine seeding for the double-elimination tournament. They looked like they could have an early exit yet again, as they lost their first double-elimination game on Saturday, forcing an 8 a.m. win-orelse game Sunday morning. Not only did the Hitmen win, they kept on winning. And winning. In fact, they won six consecutive games, without the benefit of any breaks. Winning even a couple games in a row in the D Division is a fantastic achievement, because teams travel from all over the country, and it is nearly impossible to have any inside information on where their hitters hit. Additionally, some cities send teams that tend to stack their rosters, pushing the limits of what they can get away with as far as player ratings, hoping that nobody will protest them. Advancing through a tournament bracket can sometimes come down to whether you are lucky enough to draw a team from, say, San Francisco, as opposed to questionable teams from Los Angeles or the East Coast.
Hitmen finish strong in Phoenix The Hitmen took second place at the Saguaro Cup. I wanted to give a well-deserved (Photo by Jon Seong) shout out to my friends on the #1 on Fifth-sponsored Hitmen, who went out to Phoenix April 12–13 to the annual Sagauro The Hitmen have never been one of the Cup and put on a remarkable showing. This questionably stacked teams. In fact, they D Division softball team, friendly competionly picked up three players for this tournators in America’s Finest City Softball League ment, including one of the players I coach (AFCSL), have participated in several tourna- on the Flicks Fireballs, the talented pitcher/ ments throughout the past couple of years, hitter Joel Trambley. The team went with but never enjoyed much success. In fact, a roster of just 12 players, so if anyone was they had won only one tournament game in tired or injured, there was not going to be their history, and that came this past January much rest for the weary. at the Sin City Shootout in Las Vegas. The fact that the Hitmen won six in a row Everything changed in Phoenix. The Hitwithout the benefit of an hour off anywhere men got off to a good start by going 2–1 in in that schedule is amazing. Furthermore, their three pool games at this year’s tournamanager Austin Jacobsen managed to lose
every single coin flip before the start of the games. Those coin flips determine who gets to be home and visitor, and being home offers up a small advantage, as your team gets to bat last, if necessary. The Hitmen finally lost in the championship game to the Huntington Beach Tornadoes, but their second-place finish not only netted them a large trophy, it gave them the best finish of any of the San Diego Open Division teams who participated in the Sagauro Cup, in any division. Jacobsen was proud, and he should be. He inherited this team on his own last year without having any AFCSL managing experience. He has gotten some very good players to play for him, dealt with losses, failed expectations, and the occasional bout of team drama. Now he gets the well-deserved reward of seeing his players come together. He will now always be known as a manager who could lead his team to victories. “This tournament really reaffirmed my belief that I have a really great group of guys on our team,” he said. “I’m not sure what exactly happened, but once we came back Sunday morning there was a new fire and energy that emanated from the team. It was infectious. We worked together, encouraged each other, and most importantly, we had zero negativity. “As we approached the championship game, the most memorable thing for me was the team coming together and just saying, ‘No matter what happens ... we did it ... we really did it. Now let’s go out there and do it one more time.’ To me there is nothing more satisfying than seeing the camaraderie and commitment that everyone showed at this tournament,” Jacobsen said. Hats off to the Hitmen, a team my Fireballs will be facing when AFCSL play resumes on April 27, and a team with new energy and confidence that will make them a tough challenge for anyone who plays them from here on out. —Jeff Praught is actively involved in the LGBT sports community, where he plays in the local softball (AFCSL), football (SDAFFL) and basketball (SD Hoops) leagues. He has served on AFCSL’s board of officers in various capacities and is currently the commissioner of SD Hoops. He can be reached at email@example.com
GAY SAN DIEGO April 18–May 1, 2014
WIN $100 in Gift Certificates!
Dining and Movie Certificates Available
Vote today and you will be entered to win ENTRY RULES: Choose your favorite! Tell us who the “best of the best” is and you’ll be entered into our free drawing. One “best of” will be awarded in each category. Please complete at least 50% of the ballot. One ballot per person. Ballots must be postmarked, submitted online, or hand-delivered by 5 p.m. on Monday, April 21, 2014. MAIL BALLOTS TO: Gay San Diego, 3737 Fifth Ave., Suite 201, San Diego, CA 92103 OR VOTE ONLINE: gay-sd.com CONTACT INFO (Must be completed to be valid for mail-in ballots):
VOTE ONLINE: gay-sd.com DINING & ENTERTAINMENT American Cuisine: Bakery: Bar: Bar Cuisine: Barbeque: Bartender: Breakfast: Brunch: Burger: Burrito: Casino: Casual Dining: Chinese Cuisine: Cocktail: Coffee Shop: Craft Beer Bar: Deli: Dessert: Dinner: DJ: Donut Shop: Family Restaurant: Farmers’ Market: Female/Male Impersonator: Fine Dining: French Cuisine: Frozen Yogurt: Greek Cuisine: Hair Dresser: Happy Hour: Healthy Dining: Indian Cuisine: International Cuisine: Italian Cuisine: Japanese Cuisine: Late-night Dining: Leather Bar: Lunch:
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