JUNE 2015 BALTIMOREGAYLIFE.COM
GAYLIFE Read it. Live it.
This All-American Boy is ready to make his Charm City debut at Baltimore Pride
STEVE GRAND FAREWELL TO 7 CLUB HIPPO
MUSICAL 8 MARLEY HITS THE STAGE
TO READ 14 BOOKS THIS SUMMER
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IN THIS GAY LIFE
Steve Grand This "All American Boy" will perform at the Baltimore Pride Festival
12 Departments LOCAL LIFE
What's New at the Center: Pride, Beer, and Bingo by Paul Liller
Compiled by Anthony Moll
by Kristi Metzger
Marley Electrifies Center Stage
by Timoth David Copney
Book Review: Dangerous When Wet by Danielle Ariano
The End of an Era: an interview with Club Hippo owner Chuck Bowers
Meet the Author, Tim'm
by Carlton Smith
Board Member Spotlight: Jabari Lyles
by Paul Liller
National & International News
by Coach Maq Elé
PrEP—The Time is Now
Coming Out as an Older Adult
Financial Planning for that Summer Vacation
by Rachel Roth
Baltimore Local News
by Jill Crank, MSN/MPH, CRNP
by Steve Charing
OUR LIFE 20 21
Crossing T's by Angela Wren Justin's HIV Journal
by Justin B. Terry-Smith
out-skirts by Danielle Ariano The W.O.E. Report
by Alicia Gabriel
by Amanda Wooddell Wilhelm
by Wyatt O'Brian Evans
All Tea, No Shade with Carlton Smith, Becky
BScene: Miss Gay Maryland Pageant at Club Hippo
by Jay W.
Datebook by Rachel Roth
GAY LIFE / JUNE 2015
GLBT Community Center of Baltimore and Central Maryland Serving the LGBT Community of Maryland for 35 years
BALTIMORE TRANSMASCULINE ALLIANCE
June is Bustin' Out All Over
WOMEN OF COLOR
1000 Cathedral St. • Baltimore, MD 21201 • 410.777.8145 • GLCCB.org
A support group for trans* men (FTM). 3rd Thursdays - 6:30pm BTMA@glccb.org
A support group for trans* women (MTF), but anyone who varies from traditional gender expression is welcome. 2nd & 4th Saturdays - 8pm Tranquility@glccb.org
Recovery ALCOHOLICS ANONYMOUS LGBTQ-centered AA recovery groups, welcoming to all. Mondays - 7:15pm Thursdays - 8:30pm Saturdays - 6:30pm
NARCOTICS ANONYMOUS Men’s Rap group for men in recovery. Sundays - 11:30am
Health & Wellness BEGINNERS’ YOGA
SILhouette (Spiritually In-tuned Lesbians) is a spiritual community of women who love women desiring to discover, embrace and live as their spiritual-authentic self. 1st and 3rd Tuesdays - 6:30pm A safe, confidential, and supportive space for LBTQ women of all colors. 2nd, 4th, & 5th Thursdays - 7:30pm WOC@glccb.org Meetup.com/Baltimore-LesbiansOf-Color
Men’s Programs THE MANKIND PROJECT (MKP)
Peer-support group that is open to men of diverse race, background, sexual, and gender expression who consciously and compassionately challenge, mentor, and model the type of growth that honors and celebrates the full-spectrum of the mature male. Wednesdays - 6:30pm Bmoi1000@gmail.com
Gentle beginners’ yoga with instructor Tim Hurley, RYT. $9 Sundays - 3:30pm
HIV & STI TESTING
Youth & Young Adult Programs
FREE and confidential testing from the Baltimore City Health Dept. and University of Maryland. Wednesdays - 5-8pm
(QUEER YOUNG ADULT GROUP) A discussion, support, and social group for young adult LGBT identified or questioning individuals and their allies. Tuesdays – 5:30pm
WHAT’S THE TEA?
Social group for LGBTQ youth ages 18-25
Saturdays – 4pm
ADULT SURVIVORS OF CHILD ABUSE (ASCA)
Dan McEvily Editor
FACEBOOK.COM/GLCCB • TWITTER.COM/GLCCB • YOUTUBE.COM/THEGLCCB
Community based self-help support group designed specifically for adult survivors of neglect, physical, sexual, and/or emotional abuse.
Dan McEvily, Editor
Thursdays – 6:30pm ASCA-Baltimore@hotmail.com ASCA-baltimore.tumblr.com
GAYLIFE Read it. Live it.
For more information on our programs, please contact Kevin Holt at firstname.lastname@example.org
GAYLIFE Read it. Live it.
GAY LIFE / JUNE 2015
year’s activities, which will kick off in Mt. Vernon on July 25! In the meantime, be sure check out BaltimorePride.org for the latest updates and news! Until next month!
A welcoming book club for LGBTQ individuals to discuss a selected reading. Thursdays - 7pm
The GLCCB is the publisher of Gay Life and the producer of Baltimore Pride
i again Gay Life readers! June is bustin’ out all over, and we’ve got a jam-packed issue for you to help you get your summer started right! To start, our fabulous book reviewer Anthony Moll brings a list of LGBTQ-friendly summertime reading selections from writers around Baltimore (p. 14). Also on the literary front, Danielle Ariano reviews Jaime Brickhouse’s Dangerous When Wet, (p. 10) and Carlton Smith chats with noted author, educator and activist Tim’m West about his latest collection of poems, pre|dispositions: affirmations on loving, (p. 11). We’ve also giving you a preview of July’s Baltimore Pride festivities in this issue, with an exclusive interview with out-country crooner Steve Grand (p. 12). Steve will be headlining the Baltimore Pride Festival stage on Sunday, July 26. Speaking of Baltimore Pride, our next issue will be our annual Pride Guide. This year’s edition will feature entertainment lineups, maps, exclusive interviews and everything you will need to be ready for this
1000 Cathedral St. Baltimore, MD 21201 410.777.8145 Phone 410.777.8135 Fax email@example.com www.baltimoregaylife.com
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Danielle Ariano, Steve Charing, Timoth David Copney, Jill Crank, MSN/MPH, CRNP, Coach Mac Elè, Wyatt O’Brian Evans, Alicia Gabriel, Frankie Kujawa, Paul Liller, Kristi Metzger, Anthony Moll, Rachel Roth, Carlton Smith, Justin B. Terry Smith, Angela Wren, Amanda Wooddell Wilhelm
John Kardys, Samatra Johnson, Asia Kenney, Kelly Neel, Eric Randolph, Richelle Taylor, Jay W.
Gay Life is a publication of the Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual, Transgender Community Center of Baltimore and Central Maryland (GLCCB). Gay Life is published monthly in Baltimore, Md., with distribution throughout the Mid-Atlantic region. Copyright 2015. All Rights Reserved. Gay Life is copyrighted and may not be reproduced without the expressed written consent of the publisher. Opinions expressed are those of the writers and do not necessarily reflect those of Gay Life or its publisher.
WHAT'S NEW AT THE CENTER
Pride, Beer and Bingo by
ON SALE NOW!
JUNE 23–28 • HIPPODROME THEATRE BaltimoreHippodrome.com • 800.982.ARTS
ello everyone! First and foremost, let me introduce myself. My name is Paul Liller and I am the new deputy director of the GLCCB. While I have a long history with the GLCCB as the development coordinator and Pride chair, this new role is something that I will be diving into head on. I look forward to working with many new faces, as well as those who already know me from my previous position, to make Baltimore a greater place for everyone! Now that we have the formalities out of the way, it’s time to talk about Baltimore Pride! Big things are happening this year and we couldn’t be happier! We have a long list of amazing sponsors, including our Platinum sponsor Horseshoe Casino. On June 25, Horseshoe will host one of my favorite Pride events—the Date Auction —in their lovely restaurant Jonny Sanchez. Following the event, they will offer free salsa dancing classes as well. Make sure you come out for what will be an amazing event! This year Baltimore Pride has really broken a lot of barriers and built even stronger ties with the community. From new sponsors and local businesses that are working with us for the first time, we are thrilled that so many in the community believe in the work we do at the GLCCB. Tavern on the Hill (900 Cathedral St.) and Bond Distributing will be donating $1 each for every Yards IPA beer sold the entire month of June. Make sure you get out and support this amazing venue. I highly suggest the Cowboy burger and the Loaded Tots!
Sasha Allen as Leading Player and the cast of the National Tour of PIPPIN. Credit Terry Shapiro
The GLCCB also wants to welcome back another familiar event, Gay Bingo. On Wednesday, June 17, Club Hippo will host Bingo with all proceeds benefiting the GLCCB. For those of you who do not know, Baltimore Pride is the largest fundraiser for the GLCCB. All the money raised through events, donations, and sales goes towards funding programs, operations, and outreach. The GLCCB is on the move, and we need the entire community to help us make an even bigger impact in the lives of the people who need us most! We have been adding new programs almost daily, from the Book Club, to a new HIV support group, youth programs to enrichment classes, and always looking for more. Recently we brought two new staff members on board, Danny Carbo and Kevin Holt, who will be serving as the new reception staff. Both come with a wealth of knowledge and experience that will really benefit the organization and community. As you look forward to Baltimore Pride, please also take some time to get involved in your local LGBT community center! We always welcome new volunteers, donors, or even just letters that share your story about how the GLCCB has impacted your life. It truly is a joy to work for a place that has been instrumental in the lives of so many! Until next time my friends! Paul Liller Deputy Director Paul Liller can be reached at email@example.com or (410) 777-8145.
GAY LIFE / JUNE 2015
GLCCB BOARD MEMBER SPOTLIGHT
Jabari Lyles by
arlier this spring, I had the absolute joy of sitting down with Jabari Lyles, the most recent addition to the GLCCB Board of Directors. We met up at Steam Punk Alley in Mt. Vernon where we ate and laughed, and I got to learn more about the Co-Chair and Manager of Education of Gay, Lesbian & Straight Education Network Student (GLSEN) Baltimore.
me to admit that. Not everyone is ready for college at 18, it’s too young. I also think that there were a lot of privileges I wasn’t afforded when growing up that didn’t prepare me for college. I was lower middle class, a first generation college student and gay in a Catholic school. I just had to wing it. But in the words of Christina Aguilera, it made me stronger.
Tell me a little about yourself. Where are you from originally?
So what was next for you after your stint at Duquesne?
I grew up in Baltimore County. My family moved around a lot when I was younger because my dad was in the Army. We finally ended up in Pikesville when I was about 7, and my parents still live there. I’ve always been a Maryland native and went to Towson High School. I was the biggest nerd—not that my grades were that good, but my extracurricular activities were phenomenal. I was the student government president, a drum major in marching band, theater, Maryland Youth
I took a year off and then went back to school at the Community College of Baltimore County (CCBC) because I knew it was right for me. It was a much better fit personally. Community college is a good time to improve grades and learn how to be a college student. It’s a great resource and opportunity to really figure out how to be a good student and approach your education on your own terms. I was also working full time, so I needed that flexibility. Today I’m a college senior at UMBC with an interest in furthering my studies at UMUC. I’m super excited about finally graduating. I’m majoring in Gender and Women’s Studies. At UMUC I’d major in Social Science.
I came out to the world— my parents, my friends, my family—at 16. My dad told me that I make him proud and that he loves me. At that early age, I realized that it was a privilege. in Government, and GLSEN. I was that kid that was involved in everything. People saw me as a total suck up.
What about after high school? I went away to Duquesne in Pittsburgh for a year. It was a turbulent time. I was just young and didn’t know how to do the whole college thing especially since I was a first generation college student. I never even saw the campus before I started there. I applied, got in, and showed up. I pretty much just went and chilled for a while. I really didn’t go to many classes. I was not there to do what I should have done. It’s important for
GAY LIFE / JUNE 2015
When did you come out? I knew I had an attraction to other men when I was in kindergarten. There was this boy who would hump the person in front of him in line, so I would purposely put myself in front of him in line. [Laughs] No, but really, the first person I told was my best friend when I was 12. I had dropped some hints to some classmates. I didn’t get much of a negative response. It’s another reason I do the GLSEN work that I do. I felt appreciated and affirmed as a young gay person. I came out to the world—my parents, my friends, my family—at 16. My dad told me that I make him proud and that he loves me. At that early age, I realized that it was a privilege. When I started with GLSEN I realized that every young LGBT person deserved that positive experience I had.
What do you do now at GLSEN? I’m the Co-Chair and Education Manager, so that means I coordinate all of the education programs for GLSEN Baltimore.
I provide development for educators as well as student presentations; and GSA support and creation. I do a bit of everything. My leadership there happened organically since I started as a volunteer and grew with the organization.
What got you interested in becoming a GLCCB board member? I think that being a part of LGBT advocacy work in Baltimore and having relationships with a lot of different people in organizations made it natural. I also noticed the lack of presence of the GLCCB with many of these groups and events. I felt there was a need for the LGBT community center in the area to be more actively involved. This was right around the time I saw the call for board applications and I realized that maybe there weren’t enough people in the organization in order to be involved with other groups like GLSEN. I knew I could be useful because this is my community and I could bring the GLCCB with me to the table in these areas. I had also heard that the GLCCB had previously struggled in the past with acknowledging voices of people of color, transgender individuals and youth. As a strong ally of all three I wanted to challenge those notions and challenge the center to be the organization I know it can be.
Tell us something about yourself that would surprise most people. I actually really enjoy country music. I’ve seen the Avett Brothers and I have Brad Paisley on rotation in my music collection. I love country and folky acoustic music. I have 93.1 FM on all the time. I can get down with some country tunes.
The End of an Era: Memories of Club Hippo AN INTERVIEW WITH THE LEGEND — MR. CHUCK BOWERS by
alking into the Hippo at noon on a weekday is such a common thing for me, that oftentimes I don’t pay attention to the surroundings. Working with the staff of the Hippo over the last eight years, I have spent many days and nights with Chuck Bowers. But today wasn’t an ordinary lunch meeting and it’s also one that I will never forget. Chuck has been a long time friend, and the Hippo has been a place I have called home. With the official announcement of the closing of Club Hippo last month, there have been a score of articles, comments, and opinions. What got lost in all that buzz was the memories that hold the Hippo near and dear to the hearts of the Baltimore LGBT community. With that, I decided that I would approach this interview in a way that would honor the memories of the place we have all loved. Chuck greeted me with a smile on his face, but I could see that he was nervous. Anyone who has heard him talk about the Hippo knows that it is more than just his business—it’s his life. His staff and patrons are his family.
If you had to pick one favorite memory from all the years you’ve been doing this, what would it be? One memory that sticks in my mind was an AIDS benefit we did years ago, and we
39 years. There were a lot of beautiful people. I wouldn’t change a thing. had about eight live disco divas. It wasn’t a great turn out, but the thing that made it so funny was that people thought it was a drag show. Debbie Jacobs, a local performer, she had put it together, and it was a lot of fun by those who were there, we had a great time. I just couldn’t believe, they knew the voices, they knew the songs, but they actually thought they were drag queens. [Laughs]
and he just… people were asking questions, and he looked at me and said ‘Are you for real’.
What has been your favorite theme from the parties you’ve done? The Wizard of Oz. I played the mayor of Munchkin Land. I have a picture hanging in my office of me as the Mayor of Munchkin Land, and no, you can’t have it! [Laughs] I also remember the first time I was talked into getting in drag. I can’t believe that men go through what they have to go through to get in a dress. My hat's off to the female impersonators. I have a lot of good memories., but my favorite memories are the people. When I used to stand on the stage and look out… I would look out into the audience and see the happiness. I always made sure everyone had a good time, or I took it personally. You gave me your money, and I wanted to make sure you enjoyed yourselves.
What is one piece of advice you have to the new folks coming up. Be proud of who you are, and continue to be a family. Everyone has got to stick together. You aren’t alone.
Speaking of divas, who was your favorite to work with?
So the million dollar question: What made you decide to lease the building to CVS? How did the transaction make you feel?
Sylvester was a hoot to work with, and of course Divine. We were sitting on the steps going down to the disco, and just sat there,
I consulted with my attorneys. They led me into meeting brokers. CVS came in, and they were the best offer I got. I wanted to
see something fresh and new in Mount Vernon. CVS has a great reputation. As for how I feel about it all—How would you feel if you bought a new car and six years from now, the car started acting up? All the sudden you realize you have to buy a new car and you don’t want to. That’s how I feel about the Hippo. I didn’t want another bar here, so when I retire, the Hippo retires. The community, public, neighbors, and long-time friends have said to me that if another bar went in there, it wouldn’t be the same.
Club Hippo owner Chuck Bowers (above, center) is all smiles with Mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Blake and House of Ruth Executive Director Sandi Timmins Photo by Steve Charing
In talking about the bar, what do you see as the future of gay bars, and what do you suggest they do? Keep it fresh. The days of the big clubs are gone, not just in Baltimore, but all around the country. Gay life will still exist and go on. It won’t always be in a bar, but it will always exist.
Is there anything you would change if you could do it all over? I probably should have retired earlier. I just want to be able to do some things for me. I don’t really think I would change anything though. I don’t see anything wrong with what we did. 39 years. There were a lot of beautiful people. I wouldn’t change a thing.
GAY LIFE / JUNE 2015
HIGH LIFE Mitchell Brunings stars as the title character in Marley at Center Stage through June 14 Photo by Richard Anderson
Marley Electrifies Center Stage by TIMOTH DAVID COPNEY
arley, the terrific show running this month at Center Stage, boasts an embarrassment of outstandingly talented performers, and I had the pleasure of interviewing two of them. Crystal Joy and Ano Okera sat and talked with me in the theatre, and shared their takes on the show, Bob Marley, the company. and a lot more. Ano got a call from an agency he wasn’t familiar with, asking him to come to a reading that would actually be an audition for a new work from Center Stage’s artistic direc-
GAY LIFE / JUNE 2015
tor and the playwright of a work celebrating Marley. He ignored the call. As a born and raised Jamaican living in New York, he was more than a little intrigued, though. And when they asked a second time, he went to see them. Hours after that first meeting, he was offered a part. Crystal ran into a friend on the street in New York. He asked her how the Marley reading had gone, to which she replied, “What reading?” She dialed her agent on the spot, who then arranged an audition. She
sang “Is This Love?,” one of Marley’s best tunes. She got called back two more times, but on the last time, Keiw-Armah told her he just wanted to hear her sing that song again. And she was in. Crystal and Ano had met years before, when both were in a production of Dreamgirls. They became friends but as is often the case with show-friends, they lost touch in the following years. So imagine their surprise and delight when they both got cast in this production. It seems they picked up
right where they left off. Just goes to show you how paths in this business can cross and split up and cross again. Ano’s journey started in his native Jamaica. Something of a child-star at home, he’s been performing since he was 11 years old. A singer and a dancer, he worked with some of the biggest names in the Caribbean. But the kid wanted more than that, knew he wanted to see what else was out there. After moving to New York, he spent some time at Julliard, but that wasn’t quite the right fit. So he auditioned for a national tour of Rent and landed the part of Angel. He also developed his singer/songwriting skills into a contract with Columbia Records, though that didn’t go as well as planned. With his good looks, he found work as a model, with frequent forays into commercials and regional productions around the country. He worked in Texas in Dreamgirls, Hello Dolly in Arkansas, and West Side Story in Alabama. Continued on Page 30
GAY LIFE / JUNE 2015
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have a secret to tell you. Every addiction memoir follows the same narrative arc: a person becomes addicted to a substance or act, a person’s life goes to pieces, a person gets sober. So why read them? Well, in the case of Jamie Brickhouse’s, Dangerous When Wet, the answer is that the man is freaking hilarious. Even though I knew where I was headed, Brickhouse managed to make the journey a delight. The book’s prologue begins with a thirty-eight year old Brickhouse regaining consciousness in an Emergency Room after trying to take his own life. His immediate concern? What will Momma Jean think? This is the show-tuney mantra of Brickhouse’s life. He even shortens it to WWMJT in a comic stroke of genius that riffs on those hideous WWJD bracelets that were popular for a minute in the nineties. Jean Brickhouse, the aforementioned “Mama Jean,” is Jamie’s larger than life, domineeringly sweet mom who does not find it below herself to guilt and shame her beloved son into behaving the way she sees fit. She’s the kind of woman who says what’s on her mind, in spite of the fact that nobody asked; the kind of woman who kisses one cheek, slaps the other and squeezes the third. It’s easy to see why she is the central figure in Brickhouse’s life and why he expends the majority of his energy running towards or away from her. From the Emergency Room, Brickhouse springboards back in time to his childhood in Beaumont, Texas of which he says, “I had no business being a child. The playground and its mewling habitués were not for me.”
He yearns to be grown up, to be free from the tortures of childhood swim lessons and PE classes filled with dodgeball games. When he takes his first sip of alcohol he fittingly says, “It tasted like being an adult.” From there, the story unfolds chronologically as Brickhouse takes us on a tour of his life which includes his move to New York City where he frequents the back rooms in gay bars. Brickhouse is unapologetic about his exploits without being overly graphic, but even still, some scenes are not for the faint of heart. Thanks to Brickhouse, I will never look at a pacifier the same way. If I had any bones to pick with this book, it’s that Mama Jean takes up too much space. She crowds out the rest of the book’s characters especially Brickhouse’s long time partner, Michael Hayes, who’s one dimensionality left a hole in the story for me. But overall Brickhouse hits the mark. He manages to use his sense of humor to inject lightness into what would otherwise be a dark and harrowing story, but he doesn’t overdo it, as is so often the case in this genre. In the moments when the book needs restraint Brickhouse obliges, which allows the tender moments to stand on their own. And stand they do. Dangerous When Wet Jamie Brickhouse JamieBrickhouse.com The author will be at the Ivy Bookshop (6080 Falls Road) on June 17 at 7 p.m. for a reading and book signing. The event is free and open to the public.
Meet the Author, Tim'm by
he Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual, Transgender Community Center of Baltimore and Central Maryland (GLCCB) will welcome noted poet, activist and education Tim’m West to its Waxter Center home (1000 Cathedral St., 3rd floor) on Thursday, June 25 at 7pm. West will be reading selections from his latest work, pre|dispositions: affirmations on loving, his first original published work since 2007. West is the author of three books Red Dirt Revival, BARE, and Flirting. A graduate of Duke, The New School, and Stanford universities, he is also co-founder of the now defunct rap group DDC. Tim’m followed their success with three solo projects, “Songs from Red Dirt,” “Blakkboy Blue(s),” and the 2009 release “In Security: The Golden Error.” He also created and hosted the “Front Porch” Spoken Word/Soul/Hip Hop showcase in D.C., Oakland, Chicago, Brooklyn, Atlanta, Dallas, Houston and various U.S. colleges and universities. For more information on Tim’m’s work, visit Reddirt.biz. Gay Life recently caught up with West to chat about his latest work and upcoming show. Tell us a little about yourself . Beyond being the author of four poetic memoirs which do a better job of telling my business than I can here, I would say that my latest work, pre|dispositions uses poetry, prose, and essay to reveal some of my innermost thoughts as a black queer man, born
Pre|dispositions by Tim'm T. West uses poetry, prose, and essay to reveal some of his innermost thoughts as a black queer man
in Cincinnati, raised in Arkansas, and who has journeyed through various U.S. cities in search of love and affirmation that I came to realize (the hard way) comes from self. While I’m very accomplished in many of the ways people measure (e.g., education, professional status), I often still struggle with feelings of depression and longings for love. pre|dispositions emerges as a journal of sorts, organized by themes, into various intimate aspects of my life. My calling has been to enable people to connect to their own truth and to others who share that truth through the courage to be more fully human, more honest with themselves when things aren’t okay, more hopeful for joy on the other side of it. Other than that I watch lots of ESPN, love philosophy books and sci-fi, and have been fortunate enough, of late, to have found love in my life on the other side of a lot of pain. Just before publishing the book, I went through a breakup and one of my best frineds passing. I’d been stuck and sitting with much of the work in pre|dispositions but the pain released it all. Happy for that now. Why did you title your latest work pre|dispositions? Are you saying that all that you encountered was inevitable because of your DNA? Pre|dispositions is about the break between what nature compels us to do and be and the persons we are becoming beyond those compulsions. I suppose many of our predispositions are inherited and other socialized by growing up with the family one is born or adopted into. A few examples for me are being a preacher’s kid who is stridently non-religious, or being a cynic about love and romance who is always falling in love. Humans are full of contradictions; and the book exposes in clear view, the way one man manages and forgives himself in an effort, not to be a perfect person, but to own and honor imperfections in the journey to become a better person. What are some of your favorite pieces in pre|dispositions? When you put a collection together and leave out dozens of other works, it’s hard to choose, but some of my favorite to read are “why I love black men”, “admission”, “sensibility” and “in-between”. The pieces about love
and romance are so vivid they often take me back to the raw emotion; and it’s nice when audiences can go there with you, related your experiences to their own. It’s at that moment that you know you’ve never been alone in how you feel. What is spirituality to you and how does it inspires your writing? God is love. God speaks to and through me... best in my writing. My Chapter “every|thing” is about my making sense of spirituality. I still haven’t figured it all out and I’m sure God is okay with that. What would be the soundtrack for this book? If I had to pick one album it would probably be Outside’s Rough and the Smooth or George Michael’s Older. Can you leave our readers with some pearls of wisdom? I’m reticent to say that I have much wisdom, but I would say that people need to be more patient with the questions, more comfortable with the inability, at times, to answer them. The answers often emerge in the courage to sit with questions. An Evening with Author Tim’m June 25 • 7:00-9:30pm The GLCCB 1000 Cathedral St., 3rd floor FREE
GAY LIFE / JUNE 2015
All American Boy Comes to Baltimore S
Steve Grand will perform July 26 at the Baltimore Pride Festival at Druid Hil Park
inger and songwriter Steve Grand will performing at this year’s Baltimore Pride Festival on Sunday, July 26 at Druid Hill Park in northwest Baltimore. The openly gay singer, who became an online viral sensation after the 2013 release of his debut single “All American Boy,” has been writing and playing music since a young age. Grand launched a successful Kickstarter campaign in February 2014 which led to the creation and spring 2015 release of his debut full-length album, All American Boy. Gay Life recently chatted with Grand to discuss his new album, his music and why he’s more than just a pretty face. How excited are you to be part of Baltimore Pride Festivities this year? I’m super excited! I always love performing at Pride festivals. Pride has always been a special thing for me since my first one at 19. It’s was a very liberating experience and it still is today. What can audiences expect from this upcoming performance? They can expect to hear a lot of music from the record that I just released. I also like to do some things different when I perform live. There are certain parts of the performance that really come to life in a live setting. There is definitely a unique, magical feeling when I perform live. It’s a good time. I really like connecting very directly and personally with my audience. I try to go out and touch them. [Laughs] I like to wave my hand through them and make a lot of eye contact. I like to make it special and put a lot into my performance. Have you ever been to Baltimore prior to this performance? I have never been to Baltimore. This will be my first time! Your music is very personal. Could you talk a little about your creative process? I’ve written songs all different kinds of ways. Sometimes the words come first. Sometimes the music comes first. Some of my most personal work often happens all at once. I’ll write it essentially in one sitting. I was about 11 or 12 is when I first started to write songs. Growing up in a Catholic family, in the suburbs of Chicago, you’ve discussed how it was struggle coming to terms
GAY LIFE / JUNE 2015
with your sexuality. Is that something that resonates in your music? I think that comes out in all sorts of ways. It’s probably a little more subtle in my music. I think longing is a common theme in my music. I think that has to do with learning to be ok with yourself and learning to accept yourself for who you are. There are also songs like “We Are the Night.” I wrote that song coming to terms with who I was. I had the whole thing in my mind when I was writing “We Are the Night.” Do you look at yourself as a role model LGBT youth who are coming out? I don’ think anyone would ever want to admit to viewing themselves as a role model. I am aware that I have young fans and I try to live by a few basic principles. One of those principles is being true to who I am both as an artist and a human being. I also try to put more good back into the world than bad. I at least hope that at the end of it all I have done more good than bad. What is something that you hope listeners take away from your music? I think, like we were saying earlier, there’s a part of my music at its core, but more in a subtle way, about being ok with who you are and loving who you are. There’s an element about celebrating who you are as a unique person in this world. I think that a big theme is growing up and accepting yourself as an adult. I wrote most of these songs between 19-23 and I see that as more of a transition between youth into adulthood. I feel like it’s a longer transition for us Millennials. It’s a much more blurred line when you start to feel like an adult. I think that we have to deal with a lot of things now, including the economy (laughs). Not only are you a talented singer, but you have the looks to match. Do you still model or is music your only primary focus at this time? [Laughs] Thank you for not making that your first question! I haven’t actively done any modeling since I was 19, so it’s been a long time. Already at 25 you’re beginning to get a little old for most things you can do. I never made any money from it. I was just beginning to build a portfolio. I only did about four photo shoots and people are reposting it from years ago. I don’t have any regrets. It’s where I was at the time.
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Summertime Reading COMPILED BY
ast weekend I slipped into this year’s new trunks and spent my ﬁrst weekend of the year laid out in the sand, getting lost in a book, allowing the excess of sun to leave me much pinker than I ought to be.
It is almost officially summertime, that magical time of year where we find ourselves migrating toward bodies of water with a stack of books, a dearth of clothes and a perspiring glass of something poured over ice. Summer is my favorite time to read. There is something about the long days gives me a sense that anything is possible, and that I have all the time in the world to spend with my nose in some pages. This year, Gay Life brings you recommendations from writers across the city as we share our nods for books to spend your long days and short nights with. Whether it’s a hot new release or an LGBTQ classic, we hope you’ll find a great addition for your beach bag or picnic basket this season.
Tracy Dimond Tracy Dimond co-curates Ink Press Productions. She is the author of Sorry I Wrote So Many Sad Poems Today (Ink Press 2013) and Grind My Bones Into Glitter, Then Swim Through The Shimmer (NAP 2014).
John Mortara YesYes Books I finished John Mortara’s collection, some planet, on a bus ride. The book’s poems range in form like the range of humanity a person can feel in a day on this stupid, beautiful
GAY LIFE / JUNE 2015
planet. Their collection reminds you that you are a small piece on a huge planet, but your heart can be dark and big simultaneously: “that’s what you think you are getting at: how equilibrium isn’t just a fairy tale, it’s a shameful wish.” Their poems are tender fire that can keep you warm even when you are cold under your covers. Remember to “take your dark to parties” because that is part of your wholeness, even when everything feels broken.
Jen Michalski Jen Michalski is the author of the novels The Tide King and The Summer She Was Under Water. Follow her on Twitter at @MichalskJen
The Jazz Age Life of Henrietta Bingham
Emily Bingham Farrar, Straus and Giroux Henrietta Bingham, daughter of Franklin Roosevelt’s ambassador to England, Robert Worth Bingham, was a peripheral member to both the Bloomsbury Group (the collection of anti-Victorian, sexually free English writers and artists during the turn of the century that claim Virginia and Leonard Woolf and E.M. Forster among their ranks) and the jazz age, which is probably why I’ve never heard of her, but she also served to connect them, a southern belle from Kentucky-come-party girl, a transatlantic, bisexual Zelda Fitzgerald. At least that is the premise of her great-niece Emily Bingham’s biography, Irrepressible: The Jazz Age Life of Henrietta
Bingham. Bingham, who discovered a cache of love letters from two of her great-aunt’s suitors, unearthed numerous more, men and women alike, including Mina Kirstein, Wimbledon champ Helen Jacobs, and Bloomsbury artist Dora Carrington. Throw in a bunch of boozy artists and writers, narcissistic tendencies, an aristocratic lifestyle, and gay-conversion therapy at the hands of a Freudian psychologist, and this book sounds steamier than anything that ever came out of F. Scott Fitzgerald’s typewriter.
Anthony Moll Anthony Moll is a poet and essayist. He writes about books for Baltimore Gay Life and about gay life for Baltimore City Paper. Follow him at @anthonywmoll.
No Name in the Street
on Washington and the murders of MLK and Malcom X. Baldwin puts it all under the microscope in this 1972 class: Race, class, identity, respectability, violence and more. If you can pick up one “I should have read that already” book this summer, let this be it.
Mychael Zulauf Mychael Zulauf is a poet, musician and book artist. He is the author of the now empty sky, and the founder of akinoga press.
Ten Windows: How Great Poems Transform the World
James Baldwin Vintage Books I can think of few writers more appropriate for Baltimore right now than Baldwin. In both his writing and his life, Baldwin has shown both the power and shortcomings of bootstrap myths and respectability politics. As an expatriate and an intersectional queer figure, Baldwin wrote through a lens that offered the perfect distance to examine and dismantle the American fables surrounding our civil rights leaders. No Name in the Street examines Baldwin’s America through a collection of essays that weave his own life—living in Europe and his return to the American South—with the events that shaped our nation—1963 March
Jane Hirshfield Knopf I love Jane Hirshfield; I had the pleasure of hearing her read at the 2014 AWP conference in Seattle, and it was probably one of the most amazing few hours of my literary and artistic life. I am incredibly excited to read Ten Windows over the summer for this simple reason: I have never read any of her prose. I fully expect that the close-readings and poetic explorations Hirshfield embarks on in Ten Windows will employ the same sort of keenness of insight and originality of connection-building that abounds in her poetry. Read everything you can find by Hirshfield; you won’t be sorry.
We could talk about books all day if you let us. Instead, here are some other titles worth watching out for this summer:
Fight Club 2
Chuck Palahniuk Dark Horse Comics
Out in the Union:
A Labor History of Queer America Miriam Frank Temple University Press
Ed Luce Fantagraphics
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GAY LIFE / JUNE 2015
REAL LIFE LITHUANIA CUBA MINNESOTA
National & International News FDA considers changing rules on blood donations from gay men NATIONWIDE
The Food and Drug Administration introduced a draft guidance that recommends changing the lifetime ban on blood donations from gay men to a one-year deferral period. “I am encouraged that the FDA is moving forward with guidance that will revise the discriminatory lifetime ban on blood donations,” said Sen. Tammy Baldwin, D-Wis., the first openly gay senator in the U.S. “This is a first step in ending an outdated policy that is medically and scientifically unwarranted, but it doesn’t go far enough.”
Ore., Nevada legislators move to ban “conversion therapy” OREGON
The Oregon Senate passed legislation that would stop mental health care professionals from using “conversion therapy” on LGBT youth. The bill, which was approved by the
GAY LIFE / JUNE 2015
Oregon House in March, now heads to the governor’s desk. Gov. Kate Brown, the nation’s first sitting LGBT governor, is expected to sign the bill. A Nevada Senate panel has also approved a similar bill. SB353.would prohibit social workers and psychotherapists from providing sexual conversion therapy to people under the age of 18 and will be voted on by the Senate sometime this year.
Va. school system bans discrimination against transgender students VIRGINIA
Virginia’s Fairfax County School Board, which is the largest school system in the state, voted 10-1 to add a clause to its nondiscrimination policy to include protections for transgender students, employees, and job applicants. “[W]e are hoping this will bring a new age of respect and valuing of transgender and gender-nonconforming students and employees,” said Ryan McElveen, the school board member who sponsored the measure.
Minn. bill would enable businesses to deny services for same-sex weddings MINNESOTA
Minnesota state Sen. Paul Gazelka, a Republican, introduced a “Freedom of Conscience” bill, which would enable businesses to refuse marriage-related services to same-sex couples based on their religious beliefs. Although Gazelka maintains that the bill is “intended to compromise, not discriminate,” Monica Meyer of OutFront Minnesota calls is “an attack on the freedom to marry for same-sex couples,” the Star Tribune reported. The bill only applies to businesses with 20 or fewer employees, and businesses may not refuse service if it presents “substantial hardship” to potential customers.
Ark. town to votes to uphold anti-LGBT discrimination ordinance ARKANSAS
Residents in Eureka Springs, Ark., voted to uphold an ordinance that prevents discrimi-
nation based on sexual orientation or gender identity, despite the enactment of a state law earlier this year that could make the measure unenforceable. “[L]ocal municipalities like Eureka Springs have taken the initiative to ensure that all their residents are rightfully protected from all forms of discrimination,” said Kendra R. Johnson of Human Rights Campaign Arkansas. Little Rock and Hot Springs have also approved more scaled-back discrimination ordinances that only applies to city employees and vendors.
Hawaii lawmakers approve bill to help trans people change birth certificates HAWAII
The Hawaii Legislature approved a bill to allow transgender residents to change their gender on their birth certificates without having to undergo gender reassignment surgery. All that would be required to change documents would be a note from a doctor. If approved by the governor, the bill would make Hawaii the seventh state, along with
the District of Columbia, to pass a law regarding gender changes on birth certificates.
Texas House committee approves pro-LGBT birth certificate bill TEXAS
A Texas House of Representatives committee passed a bill that would allow same-sex parents to have both names on the birth certificates of their adopted children. The bill, which was introduced by Democratic state Rep. Rafael Anchia, passed 7-4 after receiving bipartisan support from GOP members in the committee. The House must now pass it before it can move to the Senate.
Rubio headlined at fundraiser for pro-”conversion therapy” group ARIZONA
Republican presidential contender Marco Rubio headlined a fundraiser for the conservative Arizona group behind much of the state’s socially conservative legislation, including the state’s religious freedom bill that was later vetoed by former Gov. Jan Brewer. The group is also a supporter of “conversion therapy” for LGBT youth. Although there was no media inside the room at the Center for Arizona Policy fundraiser, held at Arizona Christian University, and a spokesperson from Rubio’s campaign did not respond to repeated requests from BuzzFeed News for comment about the event or what Rubio planned to say, at least two attendees posted on social media from within the event with remarks allegedly made by Rubio.
LGBT veterans to be honored with monument in national cemetery ILLINOIS
The first federally approved monument that honors LGBT veterans will be dedicated Monday, May 25—Memorial Day—at the Abraham Lincoln National Cemetery in Elwood, Illinois, one hour south of Chicago. The monument, which was spearheaded by Stanley J. Jenczyk, junior board member of the Chicago chapter of the American Veteran’s for Equal Rights (AVER), was approved late last year by Ronald E. Walters, interim undersecretary for memorial affairs, the Windy City Times reported.
Ala. bill would let ministers, judges opt out of officiating same-sex marriages ALABAMA
The Alabama Legislature is considering a bill that would allow judges and ministers to refuse to marry same-sex couples based on their religious freedom. The bill, introduced by Republican state Rep. Jim Hill, has passed in the Alabama House of Representatives and is set to be voted on by a state Senate committee.
Ireland votes to approve marriage equality IRELAND
Ireland became the first nation to approve same-sex marriage by a popular vote last month, becoming the first country to do so. The Daily Beast noted that the resounding victory—62 percent of the population voted in favor of the referendum—was in large part due to the massive voter turnout and strong support in rural, traditionally conservative area.
Clergy from U.S., Canada bless same-sex couples in Cuba CUBA
Clergy from the U.S. and Canada blessed nearly two-dozen Cuban same-sex couples during an LGBT Pride march in Havana. The Washington Blade reported that Mariela Castro, daughter of Cuban President Raúl Castro, was among the more than 1,000 people who took part in the event as part of the annual commemoration of the International Day Against Homophobia and Transphobia. Same-sex marriage is presently illegal in Cuba.
Lithuanian committee finds that civil unions do not breach constitution LITHUANIA
A bill to legalize same-sex civil unions in Lithuania has cleared a parliamentary committee that was tasked to determine whether such a law would breach the country’s constitution. Lithuania has defined marriage as only being between two people of the two sexes so the inquiry was an important hurdle in progressing the bill. The Committee on Legal Affairs of Lithuanian Parliament, known locally as the Seimas, held the inquiry.
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State Department does not recognize transgender passports INDIA
BuzzFeed News has confirmed a report in India that a U.S. consulate delayed processing a visa request from a transgender HIV activist, Amruta Alpesh Soni, because her passport lists her gender as “T” for transgender. The website was told by a State Department Spokesperson that anyone applying for a U.S. visa must declare themselves male or female on their application even if they have been issued a passport with an alternative gender designation in their home country. India is presently the largest of a growing number of countries that allow people to identify as other than male and female on official documents, including Pakistan, Nepal, Australia, and Denmark, according to Richard Tom Koehler of the organization Transgender Europe.
Marriage equality case in Guam to proceed GUAM
A lawsuit challenging Guam’s same-sex marriage ban will move forward after a federal judge decided against postponing it until after the U.S. Supreme Court rules on gay nuptials this summer. Attorney General Elizabeth Barrett-Anderson has decided not to defend Gov. Eddie Calvo and Office of Vital Statistics registrar’s decision to deny a lesbian couple a marriage license. If Guam allows gay marriage, it would be the first U.S. territory to do so.
Costa Rica high court: Professional groups can’t discriminate against LGBT people COSTA RICA
The Supreme Court of Costa Rica upheld a ruling that professional associations may not discriminate against people who are in same-sex relationships. The lawsuit was brought after the same-sex partner of a member of Costa Rica’s Doctors and Surgeons Association was refused membership at recreational facilities owned by the association for the benefit of their members and their families because the two weren’t married. Presently, gays and lesbians cannot legally marry in Costa Rica or enter into civil partnerships. The association voluntarily updated its policy in February in response to the issues raised in the lawsuit so that the partners of its unmarried members, regardless of sexual orientation, can access its recreational facilities as long as they have been cohabiting for at least three years.
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Club Hippo will close after 43 years and become a CVS Pharmacy Photo by Bob Ford
Baltimore Local News An End of an Era: The Hippo is Set to Close After 43 years, the Club Hippo, one of Baltimore’s oldest and most iconic LGBT institutions, is poised to close its doors. As confirmed at a meeting with employees on May 9, Hippo owner Chuck Bowers has negotiated to convert the building at the southwest corner of Charles and Eager streets into a CVS store. The negotiations between CVS and Bowers began early in 2014. Under the arrangement Bowers will retain ownership of the building and lease it to CVS. There is no date certain for the anticipated last dance, but it will likely take place sometime after the summer at the earliest. Upon completion of the deal with CVS, it would mean an end of an era for an establishment seen by many as the epicenter of Mount Vernon’s “gayborhood.” Recently, that area has also been jolted by the expected closing of Jays on Read, a piano bar that had a loyal LGBT following and Comprehensive Car Care, a long-time staple on Eager Street. The Hippo, which opened on July 7, 1972, possesses one of the largest dance floors of
GAY LIFE / JUNE 2015
any club in the state. During disco’s heyday, the Hippo flourished with huge crowds dancing to the beats of vintage and newer disco hits on its spacious rectangular floor bathed in glimmering, colorful lights. As musical tastes changed in succeeding years, so did the music. The Hippo kept up. The club also features a popular video bar where karaoke and weekly show tunes video presentations occur and a saloon area that had been renovated several years ago. Those renovations dispensed with the two pool tables near the bar’s large glass windows and added more seating at tables within the saloon. Through the years, the Hippo, whose motto is “Where everyone is welcome,” hosted such extravaganzas as the Miss Gay Maryland pageants and Mr. Maryland Leather contests as well as Twelve Days of Christmas, an annual affair that benefits local non-profit organizations. The Hippo had also served as the venue for Gay Bingo—a weekly event whereby non-profit organizations shared in the proceeds. To broaden its appeal, the Hippo has held weekly Hip-Hop nights the past few years. There have been numerous specialty events held at the Hippo with well-known
DJs and drag performers entertaining the masses. Many of these individuals began their drag careers at the Hippo. The club’s Halloween celebrations are legendary showcasing the community’s vast cache of creativity, and the Hippo’s annual New Year’s Eve gala has always been a popular stop to herald in the New Year that frequently attracted local celebrities—LGBT and straight—to the club. Though the Hippo does not have a large political footprint, it has been the host venue for fundraising events throughout the referendum battle in 2012 in an effort to secure marriage equality. Baltimore Mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Blake, who had appeared at some of those events, customarily spends her birthday at the Hippo for one of their charitable Bingo nights. For his part, Bowers, who recently turned 70, has donated sizable amounts of money to LGBT non-profits, primarily to Baltimore Pride and its sponsor, the Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Transgender Community Center of Baltimore and Central Maryland (GLCCB). The Hippo has been one of the focal points for the annual Pride block parties along Eager Street. In addition, he has allowed other organi-
zations to hold fundraising events at the club. Early in the 1980s when the AIDS crisis began, Bowers was one of the first to help raise money to fight the disease. Other than special events, there has been a decline in gay bar patronage over the past few years for a variety of reasons, and the Hippo was impacted by that trend as well. Nonetheless, many folks in and out of Baltimore’s LGBT communities view the Hippo as more than just a bar with so many stating that the Hippo was the first gay bar they patronized. It had also been a strong visitors’ destination whereby out-of-towners discovered Baltimore as a gay-friendly city. To others, it meant much more. “The Hippo is an anchor of LGBT openness in Baltimore,” said Tree Turtle, a Baltimore resident. “It routinely brings together a broad cross-section of Baltimore of all colors and creeds. Regardless of the progress of LGBT human rights, regardless of the mainstreaming of queer people, and no matter how tough the economic climate is, we still need community havens! We still need people to love us for our difference. Yes: we are both same and different!” She adds, “Where would we be but for the openness and distinctiveness of
A portion of the historical photographs perserved in the GLCCB archives
The Baltimore Eagle was denied transfer of liquor license
the leather daddies, the drag queens, and the drag kings? That’s why we need to be accepted for our work as well as our play. That’s why we need the Hippo, the Baltimore Eagle, the GLCCB, and all LGBT refuges in Baltimore!”
closed for renovations for more than 180 days, they’ve set aside the 180-day guideline dozens of times for other bars. And although there is no penalty in law that requires the Liquor Board to revoke our license, they concocted the harshest punishment available. Why are they selectively penalizing The Eagle?” Despite the Liquor Board’s decision, which many believe was unjust, capricious and even discriminatory, the ownership group and supporters has devised a three-pronged strategy to bring the Baltimore Eagle back. That strategy to recover The Eagle’s license will include pressuring elected officials, filing a reconsideration or appeal and launching an all-out grassroots campaign. That endeavor has already been underway. A group called Friends of the Baltimore Eagle, which is not affiliated with the Baltimore Eagle LLC, has distributed fliers mostly through social media urging members of the community and allies to support the effort. The flier, titled “PLEASE HELP US SAVE THIS LANDMARK TAVERN,” explains what transpired and why the Liquor Board’s decision was tainted by a biased member. Accordingly, Friends of the Baltimore Eagle is urging the community to write the governor, mayor and city council requesting that they overturn the board’s decision. The Eagle’s website, mentioned above, provides a simple form to use that includes a sample message of support, which, when completing the person’s name and email address, will be transmitted directly to those officials by clicking the Submit button. “We are asking Baltimore City for justice,” Ian Parrish told Baltimore OUTloud in an email. “The City knew our plans, the City took our money, then the City took our license—and that’s neither ethical nor legal. We as businesspeople have been wronged, the LGBT community has been wronged, and area residents who need this major
LGBT History on Display at Creative Alliance The Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Transgender Community Center of Baltimore and Central Maryland (GLCCB) showcased a collection of photographs and other items from the GLCCB Archives in late May at the Creative Alliance. This exhibit—called “Picture It”—presented historical images as well as dozens of unidentified photographs from the collection. Also on display will be a selection of posters, apparel, Pride memorabilia, historical documents and other items representing the history of Baltimore’s LGBT community. The mission of the Archives Committee is to preserve the GLCCB’s over 40 years of service to Baltimore’s LGBT Community. In partnership with the Special Collections Department at the University of Baltimore, they have been organizing and caring for memorabilia, historical documents, photographs and other items accumulated over the decades. The committee has accomplished many goals since beginning their work in 2012— most significantly, the acquisition and organization of almost every issue of the Baltimore Gay Paper (now Gay Life) from 1979 to present with the ultimate goal of professionally digitizing the issues and making them available online. For more information on the collection, you may contact the committee at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Chesapeake Pride Cancelled Citing financial difficulties, the Chesapeake Pride festival, which usually occurs on the first Saturday in August, will not be celebrating their 10th annual event this year. “It takes $8,000 to $10,000 in donations to make the festival happen each year,” said John Petrosillo, the festival’s publicity director. “We simply do not have the financial support to swing it this year. Frankly, we also lack the interest of people wanting to volunteer and/ or be on the planning committee. We plan to hold smaller events this year, some of which will be fundraisers, in order to make Chesapeake Pride Festival 2016 possible.” The festival takes place at picturesque Mayo Beach in Edgewater, MD. It is the only annual Pride event held in Anne Arundel, St. Mary’s or Calvert counties. To help out, you may call Kim at 410-599-0CPF (0273) or email at info@ chesapeakepridefestival.org.
Eagle Supporters Rally Last month, the three-member Baltimore City Liquor Board refused to grant the owners of the Baltimore Eagle a liquorlicense transfer, claiming that the work on renovations was not completed within the requisite 180 days. Hundreds of thousands of dollars have been invested by Charles and Ian Parrish in renovations, permits and other expenditures in an effort to re-open the bar on the corner of Charles and 21st Streets that had been a popular venue for the leather community since 1991. “We disagree with the decision of the Liquor Board,” says the message on the bar’s website, TheBaltimoreEagle.com. “We believe that the City should honor its promise to us. Although their stated reason for extinguishing our license is that The Eagle has been
Photo by Steve Charing
revitalization have been wronged. “The Liquor Board has delivered nothing but broken promises, conflicts of interest, and selective applications of the law - blunder after blunder at the worst possible time for our City. We are asking the community to rise up and join us in our request to Mayor Rawlings-Blake to right this wrong and to show us that business investment and diversity are truly welcome in Baltimore.” Parrish points out that renovations to the bar have resumed and are moving forward. He urges supporters to sign the petition at TheBaltimoreEagle.com.
Prime Timers to Discuss Erectile Dysfunction Prime Timers of Baltimore announced that the guest speaker at their general Meeting on June 14 will be Dr. Alan Geringer, a board certified urologist with Clinical Associates of Maryland. The meeting takes place at St. Mark’s Lutheran Church at St. Paul & 20th Streets at 6 p.m. Dr. Geringer will discuss the erectile dysfunction disorder and the options available for treatment. Health issues for gay men become a major concern as they grow older. Many men find it embarrassing to discuss this issue. Ralph Welsh, president of Prime Timers says that this is a comfortable setting to ask the questions about this problem that many face as they advance in age. Prime Timers of Baltimore is a chapter of Prime Timers World Wide, a group of older gay or bisexual men (and younger men who admire mature men). Their members are men who have chosen to have their social lives enriched by the many diverse activities in which the members engage. For further information, call 410-2527239, or contact Prime Timers at info@ ptbalto.org.
GAY LIFE / JUNE 2015
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GAY LIFE / JUNE 2015
OUR LIFE JUSTIN’S HIV JOURNAL
Traveling with HIV by JUSTIN B. TERRY-SMITH
here are many mixed feelings about banning people from other nations because they have HIV. In 2009 President Barak Obama overturned the United States HIV travel ban, which in my opinion was the smart thing to do. Any HIV travel ban to me is asinine because it honestly doesn’t make a huge difference in a country's infection rates. I hate how countries and even states are so divided on whether to or not to let others stay, live or receive care in their area that are from other areas. It makes no sense that it had to come to this. If we further analyze where this might have stemmed from, we might be able to blame HIV stigma. For a long time it was first theorized in a study that HIV’s “Patient Zero” was a Canadian flight attendant Gaetan Dugas. Dugas had many sexual partners around the world and many thought he was responsible for bringing HIV to North America, even though in later years it was found that HIV had been in the United States since the 1960’s. But hearing this when HIV was bought into the mainstream and affected and infecting straight people politicians got scared and in 1987 the ban was initiated. This could have been bought up because of the way that at first people were told that HIV came to the United States via Dugas. But alas people knew not the detriment they would do to the HIV community.
Currently many countries, similar to the United States, have overturned their travel bans and have started to let citizens from other countries travel there. Just like LGBT rights countries around the world are slow to change, but eventually they will. To see an updated site on the HIV travel ban around the world go to HIVtravel.org Now the summer months are here and Pride is right around the corner, and I will admit to stereotyping my own people…gay people love to travel. If you are planning a trip and you are gay and/of HIV positive I suggest you look at the site above to make sure you are not wasting your money and you have a good time. BUT if you are a bad-ass activist and pioneer like myself, you might actively seek out these places in order to make a difference. I’ve often wanted to travel overseas to these places in order to make a difference, but I never had the time. Also now that I am married and have a family, I might not be able to do it. If you can, make sure to travel, love and live!
Justin B. Terry-Smith MPH is a noted HIV and gay civil rights activist and the creator of ‘Justin’s HIV Journal,” a popular blog in which he shares his trials and tribulations of living with HIV. A U.S. Air Force veteran, Justin resides in Laurel, Md. with his husband, Dr. Philip Terry-Smith and their son Lundyn. Presently Justin is working towards earning his Doctorate in Public Health. Visit his main Web site at www.justinbsmith. com. He welcomes your questions at firstname.lastname@example.org. Photo by Don Harris, Don Harris Photographics, LLC © 2011. All Rights Reserved.
GAY LIFE / JUNE 2015
THE W.O.E. REPORT
The Top Ten Qualities for LGBTQ SuperCouples, Part Two
by DANIELLE ARIANO
f I had to draw emojis to depict my wife Lindsay and myself, mine would be a giant heart with a tiny brain and hers would be a giant brain with a tiny heart. It’s not that I’m dumb or that she is heartless; it’s just that these symbols would most accurately represent how we interact with the world and with one another: I am all emotion; she is all logic and reason. When I am processing an event, reason does not even enter into the equation, which is terribly confusing for my logical wife, who cannot even imagine the existence of an equation without reason. Sometimes when we talk to one another, it’s as if we are speaking different languages. Mine is that of a beautiful Italian opera that I do not literally understand, but feel in the very depths of my soul. Lindsay’s language draws on concrete observations and facts and consists of an inordinate number of beeps and boops. These differences make for some pretty spectacular disagreements. The other night, for instance, while I was telling Lindsay a story about my day, she began taking photos of our dogs (we have three now, more on that in another column) and I had the distinct feeling that she wasn’t listening, so I stopped my story right in the middle. She continued click clicking, oohing and aahing over the dogs. “You know,” I said after a few minutes had passed, “I don’t feel like you were listening to me and that hurt my feelings.” I was hoping for a response along the lines of, “I’m sorry, I was distracted and I didn’t mean to hurt your feelings.” Instead, I was met with a few moments of silence during which I could almost hear the faint beeping and booping inside of Lindsay’s head as she processed my statement in her big, logical brain. When her calculations were complete, she proceeded to recite my story nearly word for word. “See, I was listening,” she said. “But you didn’t even notice that I didn’t finish telling you the story,” I
GAY LIFE / JUNE 2015
pointed out. “You might’ve heard me, but you weren’t listening.” The argument carried on from there, with Lindsay insisting that she had been listening, while I maintained that she hadn’t been truly listening or else she would’ve noticed that my story had no end. This, in turn, led to Lindsay performing an analysis on whether my feelings should have been hurt over such a small thing, which led to me accusing her of not validating my feelings, which led to her evaluating why she should validate my feelings about something that I shouldn’t have had my feelings hurt over in the first place, which led to me huffing off, even though I am supposed to be working on not huffing off*. So you see, giant heart/little brain and big brain/little heart sometimes have the most ridiculous arguments— arguments that result in dramatic clashes reminiscent of the battles that occur when Harry Potter and Lord Voldemort meet and cast spells at one another, causing ghastly sparks to fly and leaving the two wizards drained and exhausted by the effort. Now, the point of that comparison is not to say that Lindsay is Lord Voldemort and I am Harry Potter. We take turns in each of those roles. The point is to remind my teeny, tiny brain that without the Dark Lord, Harry Potter would be a regular, boring wizard—no lightning bolt scar, no Hagrid to rescue him from the Dursley’s. Zzzzzzzz. *Lindsay’s version of these events might be slightly different than mine.
Danielle Ariano is a writer and cabinetmaker. Her work has been featured in North Dakota Quarterly and on Huffington Post and Baltimore Fishbowl. She lives in Lutherville, Md. with her wife and their three dogs. When she is not writing or building, you can usually find her at the beach surfing. Find out more at www.danielleariano.com or follow her on Twitter @dariano19.
WYATT O’BRIAN EVANS
elcome to Part Two of “The Top Ten Qualities for LGBTQ Super-Couples.” I’m so humbled that this series has become so popular! Thanks for that. As I stated last month, “Tyler” and “Terrance,” two of my best buddies, ended their seven-year relationship some time ago. Their split was rather nasty. So I asked myself, “Is there a particular recipe for nurturing and preserving a successful, lasting LGBTQ relationship?” To get the answer, I consulted an expert: certified personal love coach Brian Rzepczynski, columnist for The Gay Love Coach. He states, “No. One of the beauties of being gay is that we can create our own definitions of what constitutes an ideal relationship for ourselves as we are not hampered down by restrictive gender roles and norms like our heterosexual counterparts. Each couple develops their own unique partnership that works for them.” The Gay Love Coach adds, “That being said, there are some universal qualities that can promote a more solid and functional relationship over the long haul for partners seeking long-term connection and happiness.” In Part One, I presented the first four of Rzepczynski’s top ten qualities of LGBTQ “Super-Couples.” Now, without further ado, here are numbers 5-10: They have fun with life and try not to take things so seriously. “Successful couples are those that are playful with each other, enjoy a humorous banter between the two of them, and feel energized by such things as tickling, cracking jokes, pulling pranks on each other, and being perverted with each other.” They enjoy a sensual and sexual camaraderie that helps them to meet their erotic potential. “The happiest couples tend to report enjoying nonsexual affection in their daily lives through
spontaneous touch, verbal strokes, holding hands, cuddling, and massage. They also understand the importance of keeping their erotic lives energetic and enjoyable.” They have a supportive network who honor their relationship. “Having the backing and encouragement of loved ones can be a great impetus for reinforcing as gay couple’s commitment.” They are comfortable with their sexuality and not afraid to show it. “Confident and successful gay couples are comfortable being in a relationship with each other no matter the setting or public domain.” They possess the following in their partnership: trust, commitment, honesty, openness, flexibility, loyalty, dedication and devotion, quality time, sensitivity, nonjudgmental attitudes, loving and unafraid to express their feelings and passionate side, etc. “Gay men in particular are vulnerable to power struggles, competition, and issues surrounding intimacy and closeness due to male socialization in their man-to-man relationships. Successful couples are aware of these pitfalls and work hard to embrace a holistic masculinity that counters the stereotypes they’ve been ingrained with.” They place a high premium on their lives together and are focused on not taking each other for granted. “Successful gay couples realize that the busyness of life can very easily put their relationship on the back shelf, but they don’t let it! They ensure that they devote quality time together, schedule special ‘date nights’ with each other, and are attentive to each other’s needs.” So, there you have all these “ingredients!” Put them to work for you—and your special someone!
Wyatt O’Brian Evans is a journalist, radio personality (“The Wyatt O’Brian Evans Show,” PapiChuloRADIO.com), advocate, instructor, motivational speaker, and author of the new novel, Nothing Can Tear Us Apart—RAGE! (Gay/ethnic). You may visit Wyatt at his on line home, WyattEvans.com. Follow him at The Wyatt O’Brian Evans Official Fan Club on Facebook, and on Twitter at @MisterWOE.
ALL TEA, NO SHADE: DISHIN’ WITH THE DUCHESS
Here's to the Guys who Brunch by CARLTON
Hey Family! So much is happening in the gayborhood and Baltimore. Summer is here—that time of year where daylight hours extend into the early evening, where many of us spend our afternoon at happy hour with a cool refreshing cocktails and catching up with the latest tea. Speaking about stirring up some tea, I want to introduce you to the Guys At Brunch. You may have seen their sensational YouTube videos and steamy tongue to cheek conversations about the juicy gossip or news about health topics. This month, I’m checking in with Nicholas Garnett, one of the co-creators of the fabulous series! Nicholas, tell our readers a bit about yourself. I’m a Baltimore native with a background in social work. I am the host of Guys at Brunch. My co-host Shawn is making his departure soon, so I will be casting soon for a replacement! Since you last spoke with Gay Life a few years ago, how has your audience grown? Guys at Brunch now has over 200,000 channel views and counting. When we first started the show, our target audience focused on gay men ages 18-50, but all are welcome. I actually feel like many black heterosexual women gravitate to our show. What are some of the messages you try to convey to larger Same Gender Loving ( SGL) community? It’s ok to be you. Not everyone is going to agree with you and that’s fine. If people don’t challenge each other, it’s impossible for us to grow. Shawn and I rarely agree and I think that’s what’s great about our show. You have two gay black men with two very different opinions Why is it important to have an outlet like Guys at Brunch? To show the world you can have two gay black men on a public
Untying the Water Hose by COACH MAQ ELÈ
Guys at Brunch with Carlton Smith
forum that can have a meaningful dialogue and not have to shuck and jive, or put on a wig to be good entertainment. We also feel it’s important to inform our audience, such as highlighting what PrEP is all about. I make it my duty to do an episode each year on HIV/AIDs awareness, education, and prevention. With the recent uprising that took place in Baltimore, do you feel your audience believes that all black lives matter? I know that we feel that all lives matter. Before the riots happened here in Baltimore we did an episode titled, “Black lives matter the fight continues.” I receive many messages from viewers stating how sick and tired they are at being treated unjust by the criminal justice system. It’s definitely my reality as well.
n honor of summer, I thought it would be fitting to talk about your water hose. Metaphorically your water hose represents your consciousness, the knots you are untying represent the beliefs, judgments and habits you have in place that are blocking the “flow” of your life. In order to create and experience the life you desire, you must allow what you desire to flow through you; despite what our society has ingrained in us, what you desire does not just come to you. In order to receive what you desire, you must be open and available to “the flow” of the Universe. You know the pattern: you have a desire and you take some action towards creating it; you’re committed, you’re focused and nothing can stop you! Then low and behold the doubt, worry and anxiety begins, the negative chatter starts… AND YOU STOP! All of the drive you had is now gone, and
you find yourself stuck doing the exact same thing, the exact same way you’ve always done it. Untying the water hose means, breaking down those doubts, worries and anxieties and seeing them for what they really are… ILLUSIONS! These illusions are created by the part of Your consciousness that wants to stay the same, that is afraid of change. It fears losing control and not looking good, so it will do whatever it can to keep you “safe” and “not rocking the boat.” Moment by moment you have two choices: FLOW or Stay the same. If you choose the latter, then stagnation sets in and when stagnation sets in, decay happens! SO MY LOVE, ARE YOU WILLING TO CHOOSE TO FLOW?! BE-LOVED! ~Coach Maq
Coach Maq Elè is a certified Spiritual Life and the facilitator for the GLCCB group SILhouette (Spiritually In-Tuned Lesbians). For more information about Coach Maq and SILhouette please visit Maqele.com. To contact Coach Maq with your coaching questions email CoachMaq@baltimoregaylife.com.
Are there words of encouragement that you like to leave with the audience? Be the change you want to see. Lead by example.
Guys At Brunch Youtube.com/GuysAtBrunch Facebook.com/GuysAtBrunch
GAY LIFE / JUNE 2015
The Time is Now by
JILL CRANK MSN/MPH, CRNP
ear Primary Care Practitioners, As you may know, the incidence of HIV infection in the United States has not declined in the past decade. We still diagnose about 50,000 new cases every year. This is despite incredible advances in biomedical science to treat HIV and reduce transmission, as well as increased media campaigns and educational efforts on prevention. The majority of infections remain in the gay community in men who have sex with men (MSM), but HIV still affects heterosexual individuals and those injecting drugs. Some people simply think the main missing piece is condom use. Others, like myself, parallel the HIV epidemic to unplanned pregnancies: 51 percent of all pregnancies in the United States are still unintended, and this is largely unchanged over the past ten years. So, is the missing piece really only condom use? Is that all we have to offer our patients who are engaging in a biological act of nature but keep getting pregnant and infected with HIV? No. The answer is LARC (long acting reversible contraception) and PrEP (pre exposure prophylaxis)—because people don’t have sex in a laboratory where condoms are always used and you know the HIV status of your partner. PrEP is a new program to prevent HIV among those who are at ongoing risk of infection through sexual transmission and injection drug use. It has been studied for several years, after it was proven that maternal to child transmission can be reduced to less than 2 percent if the HIV positive mother and baby receive certain medications with activity against HIV. In July of 2012, the FDA approved the use of a pill for PrEP called Truvada, which is composed of two medications that treat HIV. The person at ongoing risk of acquiring HIV would take Truvada daily, see their medical provider every three months for lab tests, receive counseling for sexual health and adherence, and continue to use condoms to prevent transmission of all STIs (sexually transmitted infections) as well as clean needles for drug use. The side effects (headaches, abdominal pain, nausea, diarrhea) resolve after a few weeks in most people. With routine
GAY LIFE / JUNE 2015
labwork, any issues with the medication affecting the kidneys or liver can be assessed in an adequate time frame. If the PrEP protocol is followed by both provider and patient, and Truvada is taken every day, it can prevent transmission of HIV up to 99 percent of the time. This supersedes estimates in research trials studying prevention of HIV with condom use in heterosexuals and gay men. For those of you who prescribe statins to reduce cardiovascular risk, think about it like this: the number of people needed to treat with a statin over one year to prevent one heart attack is 250, but the number of people needed to treat with Truvada over one year to prevent one HIV infection is only 61. Doesn’t it seem crazy that you might not be using PrEP, but you hand out prescriptions for statins like candy? Some opponents claim that giving people a pill every day to protect them against HIV will increase the amount of risky behavior like condomless sex with many partners. (Isn’t this reminiscent of people’s opinions about birth control in the 1960s?) In fact, the research studies have shown the exact opposite—subjects actually reduced their number of partners and reported more sex with condoms. PrEP and birth control don’t increase risky behavior, they just provide protection for behavior that is going to happen anyway. You can educate yourself further on PrEP by visiting the CDC website: www.cdc.gov/ hiv/prevention/research/prep. Now that you are aware of this exciting new tool in HIV prevention, with whom should you be having this discussion? The CDC recommends considering PrEP as a viable option for the following groups of people 18 years and older: Heterosexual men/women, trans people, or MSM who: • have HIV positive partners • have multiple sexual partners • use condoms inconsistently • have had recent bacterial STI • exchange sex for money, food, housing, etc • Injection drug users who : • share injection equipment • have HIV positive injecting partners • have had recent drug treatment but are still injecting
In addition, focus your attention on young African American MSM ages 13-24 years old. They comprise 45 percent of new HIV infections among African American MSM and 55 percent of new HIV infections among young MSM overall. Think about your females who are not able to recommend that their male partner wear a condom. Think about your couples who want to have children where one partner is living with HIV and one is not. Think about your hepatitis C patients on methadone or Suboxone. Think about your transwomen who use injectable estrogen or engage in transactional sex. A couple of ways to make sure that you don’t overlook these risk groups in the midst of your busy day is to a) obtain a sexual history and b) offer an HIV test. The sexual history should include the 5 Ps of sexual health: number and gender of Partners, types of sexual Practices (oral, vaginal, anal), use of Protection for STIs (condoms, etc), Past history of STIs, and Pregnancy desires and/ or prevention methods. Offering an HIV test can generate a discussion of whether your patient is at risk for acquiring HIV and how they are protecting themselves. If the test is positive, you can link them to specialized care which is an effective intervention to reduce HIV incidence in the community. If the test is negative, you can hand them a pamphlet from the CDC website about PrEP and recommend that they review the information. At your next visit, you can both have an informed discussion about whether PrEP is something they feel empowered to use to remain HIV negative. Everything in medicine comes down to making decisions based on risk and benefit. As a nurse practitioner, I leave my morals and judgment at the door when I see my patients. For whatever reason, if I find that they are at risk of contracting HIV, or if they are worried about it, we have a conversation about PrEP as an evidence-based option. Please consider educating yourself and your patients about PrEP. Let’s prevent heart attacks, unintended pregnancies, and HIV. In my mind, one is no more important than another, and our patients deserve to benefit from modern medicine delivered by progressive front line primary care providers.
honor our past, work for our future
ON JUNE 27, JOIN US FOR BRUNCH & FILM SCREENING OF
Coming Out as an Older Adult by
f you can actually remember where you were when the Stonewall Riots happened ( June 27-28, 1969), you might be what some consider to be an older adult” Not necessarily an elder or a senior, you are somewhere in the years of life where you remember things that happened in the 60s, 70s, and 80s—not just because you read about them in a book, but because you were alive and kicking during those times. You’re probably thinking: if I do remember where I was then, am I really an older adult? Well, the term is loose. SAGE (Services and Programs for Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual, & Transgender Elders) defines older adults as those in the range of 45-75. Why does this matter? As with any stage in life, your support, health, and life needs are changing as you get into those “older adult” years. But, for LGBT individuals, the older adult years can be difficult. For most of us, growing older in America means we have access to a variety of support services and programs, including Meals on Wheels, legal aid services and low-income senior housing. Unfortunately, for those of us who are LGBT older adults, research shows we’re less likely to access these services. In fact, in The Aging and Health Report by The National Resource Center on LGBT Aging, only 28 percent of LGBT respondents used any services or programs geared toward older adults. The largest barrier: fear of discrimination and abuse. In a recent national survey of LGBT older adults in long-term care facilities, SAGE found that about only 1 in
5 respondents felt they could be open about their sexual orientation or gender identities with facility staff, 89 percent predicted that staff would discriminate based on their sexual orientations and/or gender identities, and 43 percent reported instances of mistreatment. The problem isn’t necessarily that services, programs or staff are necessarily discriminatory. In most cases it’s simply a matter of misconception and lack of education. So, organizations like SAGE and The LGBT Health Resource Center of Chase Brexton are taking on the great task of LGBT cultural competency training for staff of organizations that provide services and programs to older adults. With time, training, ongoing research, and evaluations to ensure LGBT equity through all stages and phases of life, we can only hope our successors won’t have another Stonewall to remember in the decades to come. And, speaking of Stonewall: for those of us who remember where we were then, for those who would like to know more about Stonewall, and for those who would simply enjoy a time to get to know more members of our communities, come to a brunch and screening of the film Before Stonewall. The event is free and is being held at Chase Brexton Health Care at Mt. Vernon, located at 1111 N. Charles Street on June 27 from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. Register and find out more at tinyurl.com/stonewallbrunch or call 410-837-2050 ext. 1216. For more on LGBT aging, visit SAGEusa.org.
To commemorate the anniversary of the Stonewall Riots, The LGBT Health Resource Center of Chase Brexton invites you for brunch and a movie to celebrate our community’s pride, learn more about our history, & discuss our journey ahead.
Saturday, June 27, 2015 10:00AM to 1:00PM
Chase Brexton Health Care at Mt. Vernon 1st Floor Community Rooms 1111 North Charles Street - Baltimore, MD 21201
ALL ARE WELCOME RSVP Requested
The event is free but space is limited.
RSVP to Bethany at 410-837-2050 x1216 or online at tinyurl.com/stonewallbrunch Be proud. Be healthy. lgbt-hrc.org | 410-837-2050
GAY LIFE / JUNE 2015
Financial Planning for that Summer Vacation by
AMANDA WOODDELL WILHELM
e all work hard for our money and deserve a break from the daily stress and grind. So whether you are planning a trip abroad or spending quality time with your family on a road trip, the right financial planning can help ensure you get the most out of your vacation—without breaking the bank. Below are a few tips for making your vacation extra special, financially speaking:
Develop a List
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While the term “budget” may seem to take the fun out of vacation planning, developing a detailed list of your needs and associated costs is important to ward off missing an important detail or overspending and creating debt. This list can include necessary funds such as spending money, airline tickets, rental cars, hotels, food and other excursions. You should also consider creating an emergency fund, especially if you are traveling abroad.
Set an Itinerary
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GAY LIFE / JUNE 2015
Having a rough itinerary ahead of time not only helps you outline what you want to do and see, but it also aids in budget planning. For example, you may be able to afford that extra spa time or cool zipline tour if you check to see what it costs ahead of time, and then save accordingly.
Create a “Vacation Bill” Once you have this rough estimate in mind of the overall costs, you should set the money aside each month leading up to your trip, and call it your “vacation bill.” Ideally, this will help you have the cash set aside once the date arrives and keep you from incurring unnecessary credit card debt.
Book Smartly When booking, always see what packages may be available at your destination. These
packages could include free breakfasts or discounts on admissions to the local amusement park. It is sometimes even beneficial to speak directly with a hotel-booking agent as they may be able to provide upgrades or money-saving benefits that typically would not be available.
Consider Currency Conversions If traveling to a destination that requires currency conversion, make sure to do your research in order to exchange your currency at the best rates and locations. Also, alert your bank and credit card companies about your travel, which will minimize the chance of them freezing your accounts if they see a charge from a foreign country. Whether your vacation involves hitting the beach, hiking, snorkeling, or sightseeing in Europe, it should be an opportunity for you and your loved ones to relax and reconnect. Always remember that vacation planning is not about saving money for its own sake. It is all about having fun and maximizing the hard-earned money you spend.
Amanda Wooddell Wilhelm is a Manager with SC&H Financial Advisors, the Personal Financial Planning practice of SC&H Group, which is an audit, tax, and consulting firm based in Sparks, Md. To learn more about SC&H Group, visit www.scandh.com. Note: Securities offered through Triad Advisors, Inc. Member FINRA, SIPC. Investment Advisory Services offered through SC&H Financial Advisors, Inc. SC&H Financial Advisors, Inc. and Triad Advisors, Inc. are unaffiliated entities.
Miss Gay Maryland Pageant at Club Hippo by
GAY LIFE / JUNE 2015
RECURRING & ONGOING EVENTS
Sundays Baltimore Farmers’ Market & Bazaar Every Sunday 7am-Noon Jones Falls Expressway Holliday & Saratoga Sts. PromotionAndArts.com Dog Hikes with the Doctor First Sunday of the month 11am-Noon • $2 Baltimore Humane Society 1601 Nicodemus Rd. • Reisterstown BMoreHumane.org Metropolitan Community Church Services Every Sunday 9am and 11am MCC Baltimore • 401 W. Monument St MCCBaltimore.org League of Women Bowlers Every Sunday 4:30pm AMF Marlow Heights Lanes 4717 St. Barnabas Rd. • Temple Hill LeagueOfWomenBowlers2@verizon.net Rise Up, Honoring Women’s Spirituality Fourth Sundays 12:45-2:15pm First Unitarian Church of Baltimore 1 W. Hamilton St. FirstUnitarian.net Westminster PFLAG Monthly Mtg. Third Sundays 7pm St. Paul’s United Church of Christ 17 Bond St. • Westminster PFLAGWCC.org Heterosexual Friendly Gay Brunch First Sunday Frederick’s on Fleet • 2112 Fleet St. FredericksOnFleet.com ASGRA Monthly Trail Ride First Sundays 10:30am • $25-30 Piscataway Stables 10775 Piscataway Road • Clinton ASGRA.org Charm City Volleyball: Competitive Play Every Sunday 10am-1pm • $7 Volleyball House 5635 Furnace Ave. • Elkridge VolleyBaltimore.org Service of Worship First Sundays 10:30am First & Franklin • 210 West Madison St. FirstFranklin.org Service of Worship Every Sunday 10am Brown Memorial Park Avenue Presbyterian Church • 1316 Park Ave. BrownDowntown.org
Mondays Interfaith Fairness Coalition Mtg. Fourth Mondays 7:30pm Contact email@example.com to confirm meeting location IFCMD.info PFLAG Howard County Parent Forum Third Mondays 7:30pm Owen Brown Interfaith Center 7246 Cradlerock Way • Columbia PFLAGMD.org Senior Pride: Discussion Group for Women 55+ Monday evenings Chase Brexton Health Services Call 410-837-2050, ext. 2428 for details www.bit.ly/SeniorPride
Tuesdays Howard County PFLAG Monthly Mtg. Second Tuesdays 7:30pm Owen Brown Interfaith Center 7246 Cradlerock Way • Columbia PFLAGMD.org Karate-Dō (LGBT-friendly classes) Every Tuesday 5:30-7:30pm Johns Hopkins Homewood Campus Bob Remington — MDShoto@aol.com Csskshotokan.com Meditation Group Every Tuesday 6:15-7:45pm First Unitarian Church of Baltimore 1 W. Hamilton St. FirstUnitarian.net PFLAG Baltimore Co. General Mtg. Fourth Tuesdays 7pm Towson Unitarian Universalist Church 1710 Dulaney Valley Rd. PFLAGBaltimore.org Parents of Transgender Kids Fourth Tuesdays 7:30-9pm Owen Brown Interfaith Center 7246 Cradlerock Way • Columbia firstname.lastname@example.org PFLAGBaltimore.org Rainbow Youth Alliance of Baltimore County 2nd & 4th Tuesdays 7-9pm Towson Unitarian Universalist Church 1710 Dulaney Valley Rd. RYABaltimoreCounty@gmail.com Rainbow Youth Alliance of Howard County 2nd & 4th Tuesdays 7:30pm Owen Brown Interfaith Center 7246 Cradlerock Way • Columbia 410.280.9047 email@example.com
Teen Program at JCC Second Tuesdays 6pm Owings Mills JCC 3506 Gwynnbrook Ave. JoinTeens.org Trans Parents Forum, Baltimore Co. Third Tuesdays 7-9:30pm Towson Unitarian Universalist Church 1710 Dulaney Valley Rd. PFLAGBaltimore.org
Wednesdays Charm City Volleyball: Social Play Every Wednesday 6:30-9:30pm • $3-30 Mt Royal Recreational Center 137 McMechen St. Living Well with HIV Support Group Every Wednesday 10:30am Institute of Human Virology 725 W. Lombard St. Jacques.umaryland.edu/support.html Spiritual Development with Rev. Sam Offer Every Wednesday 7pm Unity Fellowship Church of Baltimore 4007 Old York Rd. UFCB.org GEM: Gender Empowerment MD Every other Wednesday 7pm Equality Maryland • 1201 S. Sharp St. Owen@EqualityMaryland.org Senior Pride: Discussion Group for Men 55+ Wednesday evenings. Chase Brexton Health Services Call 410-837-2050, ext. 2428 for details www.bit.ly/SeniorPride Support Group for Transgender Adults Third Wednesday 7:30pm Owen Brown Interfaith Center 7246 Cradlerock Way • Columbia firstname.lastname@example.org
Thursdays HIV Support: Substance Abuse & HIV Every Thursdays 2-3pm Institute of Human Virology 725 W. Lombard St. IHV.org Karate-Dō (LGBT-friendly classes) Every Thursday 5:30-7:30pm Johns Hopkins Homewood Campus Bob Remington — MDShoto@aol.com Csskshotokan.com
Fridays HIV Support: Just Between US Every Friday 11am-Noon Institute of Human Virology 725 W. Lombard St. IHV.org
Saturdays Baltimore Frontrunners Every Saturday 8:45am • Brunch 10am Panera Bread, 3600 Boston St. BaltimoreFrontrunners.org HOPE DC Monthly Brunch First Saturdays 11am Rosemary’s Thyme Bistro DC 1801 18th St. NW • Washington, D.C. HopeDCSocialsemail@example.com In the Company of Women First Saturdays 10am-Noon First Unitarian Church of Baltimore 1 W Hamilton St. FirstUnitarian.net
Monday, June 1 Spot Light Mondays Drink specials & drag shows! 9pm Club Hippo • 1 W. Eager St. ClubHippo.com
Tuesday, June 2 Showtune Video Madness Sing out Louise! FREE • Tuesdays 7:45pm. Club Hippo • 1 W. Eager St. ClubHippo.com Showdown Trivia Competition Hosted by John Woods • 9:30pm Club Hippo • 1 W. Eager St. ClubHippo.com
Wednesday, June 3 Hunks In Trunks All Male swim-suit fashion show & charity auction. $23-265. 6:30-9:30pm Red Maple • 930 N. Charles St. RGroup.org Gay BINGO! Every Wednesday 8:30pm. Club Hippo • 1 W. Eager St. ClubHippo.com Neighbors Night at Marquee Lounge Every Wednesday 5pm. The Patterson • 3134 Eastern Ave. CreativeAlliance.org
Thursday, June 4 Film and Fashion Series Feat. the original Oceans 11 • $8-10 • 7:30pm Creative Alliance at The Patterson 3134 Eastern Ave. CreativeAlliance.org
HAVING AN EVENT?
GAY LIFE / JUNE 2015
WTMD First Thursdays Concerts in the Park The kick-off features Kopecky, Marah, Strand of Oaks • FREE • 6:30-9:30pm Canton Waterfront Park • Boston St. WTMD.org 98 Rock the Dock Summer Concert Series Feat. Baltimore’s hottest local bands. FREE • 6pm Hard Rock Cafe Baltimore • 601 E. Pratt St. HardRock.com/Cafes/Baltimore Hip Hop Night at Club Hippo Get your dance on every Thursday. Reduced cover before 11pm. Club Hippo • 1 W. Eager St. ClubHippo.com Omega Thursdays Every Thursday 9pm-2am Grand Central • 1001 N. Charles St. CentralStationPub.com
Friday, June 5 Watch Out for the Big Girls Feat. Jiggly Caliente Brooks and a cast full of big girls! • 10pm Club Hippo • 1 W. Eager St. ClubHippo.com Levi & Leather Leather or Bear attire gets you a discount. Fridays 8pm. Grand Central • 1001 N. Charles St. CentralStationPub.com First Fridays First Friday of every month 6:30pm • FREE Eastern & East Ave. CreativeAlliance.org
Saturday, June 6 Zodiac Saturdays No cover… if it’s your sign. Every Saturday 9pm. Club Hippo • 1 W. Eager St. ClubHippo.com
Sunday, June 7 Sunday Night Sh*t Show New weekly drag variety show hosted by Mimi Imfurst and Brooklyn Heights. Every Sunday 8pm • $7 Grand Central • 1001 N. Charles St. CentralStationPub.com
Monday, June 8 Caribbean American HIV/AIDS Awareness Day AIDS.gov World Oceans Day “Healthy Ocean, Healthy Planet." $24.95-39.95 • 10am-3pm National Aquarium • 501 E. Pratt St. Aqua.org
Tuesday, June 9 S.I.N. and Sinners Say “hi” to the boys. • Every Tuesday 9pm Club Hippo • 1 W. Eager St. ClubHippo.com
Wednesday, June 10 An Evening with Isaac Oliver $14-20 • 7:30pm Creative Alliance at The Patterson 3134 Eastern Ave. CreativeAlliance.org Open Men’s Meeting Peer-support group that honors the mature male • FREE • 6:30-8:45pm The GLCCB • 1000 Cathedral St. Bmoi1000@gmail.com
Saturday, June 13 Maryland Traditions Folklife Festival Be amazed by the “arts of the everyday.” FREE • 11am-7pm Creative Alliance at The Patterson 3134 Eastern Ave. CreativeAlliance.org “Weird Al” Yankovic The Mandatory Tour • $30-60 • 6:30pm Pier Six Pavilion • 731 Eastern Ave. PierSixPavilion.com
Sunday, June 14 Marley closes Based on the life and music of Bob Marley. $19-69. • 2 & 7:30pm Center Stage • 700 N. Calvert St. CenterStage.org
Hot Sauce Feat. Rich Morel. • $10 • 9pm • Monthly Grand Central, 1001 N. Charles St. CentralStationPub.com Rodrigo y Gabriela w/Madisen Ward and the Mama Bear. $35-75 • 6:30pm Pier Six Pavilion • 731 Eastern Ave. PierSixPavilion.com
Sunday, June 21 Father’s Day Huey Lewis & The News w/Jamie Kent • $35-75 • 6pm Pier Six Pavilion • 731 Eastern Ave. PierSixPavilion.com
Monday, June 22 John Fogerty: 1969 Performing the hits of Credence Clearwater Revival • $45-85 • 6:30pm Pier Six Pavilion • 731 Eastern Ave. PierSixPavilion.com
Tuesday, June 23 Pippen opens Tony Award® for Best Musical Revival. $25-110 • 8pm • Thru June 28 Hippodrome • 12 N. Eutaw St. France-MerrickPAC.com
Thursday, June 25 Gogol Bordello & Flogging Molly w/Mariachi El Bronx • $35-45 • 6pm Pier Six Pavilion • 731 Eastern Ave. PierSixPavilion.com
Monday, June 15
Friday, June 26
Giant Monster Monday Movies & drink specials • 8pm-Midnight The Wind Up Space • 12 W North Ave. TheWindUpSpace.com
Gallagher’s Reunion Ladies Event Monthly 9pm Club Hippo • 1 W. Eager St. ClubHippo.com
Wednesday, June 17
Noches Acústicas Romantic, sexy, late-night performances with Alma Saldaña. FREE • 9:30pm • Monthly Marquee Lounge • 3134 Eastern Ave. CreativeAlliance.org
Third Eye Blind & Dashboard Confessional Two bands, one night • $30-50 • 5:30pm Pier Six Pavilion • 731 Eastern Ave. PierSixPavilion.com POZ DC Happy Hour Mixer For HIV+ men • 7pm Green Lantern 1335 Green Ct. NW • Wash., D.C. HopeDC.org
Saturday, June 20 Free Yoga in Patterson Park Bring your own mat! FREE • 8-9am • Weekly Patterson Park CreativeAlliance.org
Saturday, June 27 National HIV Testing Day (NHTD) AIDS.gov Pics in the Park Feat. Jurassic Park • FREE • 9pm Center Plaza • N. Charles & Fayette St. GoDownTownBaltimore.com
Pippin at the Hippodrome Pippin is Broadway’s high-flying, death-defying hit musical! Full of extraordinary acrobatics, wondrous magical feats and soaring songs from the composer of Wicked, Pippin will lift you up and leave you smiling. This unforgettable new production is the winner of four 2013 Tony Awards® including Best Musical Revival. Hailed as “an eye-popping, jaw-dropping extravaganza” (NY1), it’s unlike anything Broadway has ever seen! Come experience Pippin, one young man’s journey to be extraordinary Direct from an acclaimed run at Boston’s American Repertory Theater, this captivating new production is directed by Tony winner Diane Paulus (Hair and The Gershwin’s Porgy & Bess). It features sizzling choreography in the style of Bob Fosse and breathtaking acrobatics by Les 7 Doigts de la Main, the creative force behind the nationwide sensation Traces. Pippin is noted for many Broadway standards including “Corner of the Sky,” “Magic To Do,” “Glory,” “No Time at All,” “Morning Glow,” and “Love Song.” Join us… for a magical, unforgettable new Pippin.
The Hippodrome Theatre 12 N. Eutaw St. Thru June 28 $25-110 Baltimore.broadway.com
GAY LIFE / JUNE 2015
Jaime Lincoln Smith, Mitchell Brunings, and Mykal Kilgore star in Marley at Center Stage through June 14 Photo by Richard Anderson
Continued from Page 8
Along the way he’s found time to write a couple of plays and start a global mixed media company. In Marley, he’s Don Letts, with a spot-on British accent and shows his triple-threat creds to great advantage. He acts, sings and dances with impressive skill. Did I say triple? Double that. Don’t forget the songwriting, playwriting, and entrepreneurial facets. Looking much younger than his years, he’s animated and easy going. He never misses a chance to turn the focus on Crystal and the rest of the cast. He’s feeling slightly surreal because the show hits so close to home, referencing places and people that are much more than lines on a page. They’re scenes from his history. Crystal is a regal beauty with the poise of a seasoned professional. Her lineage is something she’s totally aware of and has never sought to trade on. The child of one of the few black, female, Tony Award winners, and a Tony and Grammy nominee, she was born into the business but wasn’t all
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GAY LIFE / JUNE 2015
that interested in joining it. While attending La Guardia High School (the school immortalized in Fame, the movie and TV series), she discovered that she really could sing. After that, there was no stopping her. She landed the part of Dorothy in The Wiz at Hangar Theatre. That got her an Equity Card. More work soon followed, including Hair in London, national tours of Legally Blond and Memphis, and Motown, The Musical on Broadway. As Judy, one of Marley’s back-up singers, she is given an opportunity to let her voice give solid support to every song. And when she sings offstage in a tender love scene, she does the song that made the playwright and author put that particular song into the show. Is This Love? is one of Marley’s most hauntingly beautiful melodies and sentiments and she nails every swoop and dive with a command that just makes you want to say, ‘damn, that’s it’. Crystal loves being part of Marly. She’s reconnected with an old friend, made some new ones, learned a lot about one of her personal idols and the culture he represented so well. So go see Marley. Go see a fantastic play with excellent production values. Go see a cast of actors that are as polished and accomplished as anything on Broadway. And go see Crystal Joy and Ano Okera. Two of the best and loveliest members of an outstanding company of actors in a top-notch production. Marley Through June 14 Center Stage 700 N. Calvert St.
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GAY LIFE / JUNE 2015
Published on Jun 12, 2015
Gay Life interviews sexy singer Steve Grand, who will perform at the 2015 Baltimore Pride Festival. Plus, we bid farewell to the famous Club...