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BLACK HISTORY MONTH A Look at Local Pride and Heritage


Valentine’s Gifts That’ll Getcha Some



The Kids are All Right

The Vagina Monologues

Wanda Laugh the roof off the Strathmore with






letter editor’s

Black History Month is upon us, and in celebration of Baltimore’s LGBT African American communities we spoke with a few local leaders. Phillip Lovett of Baltimore Heritage Foundation and Louis Hughes are finding ways to teach us about the history of LGBT community in Baltimore, plus Kevin Clemons outlines the various events and activities celebrating 10 years of Baltimore Black Pride, including the importance of youth taking an active role in assessing and addressing the needs of their peers. A few other stories may interest our younger readers: the Gay Men’s Chorus is devoting a show to youth issues (p. 6) plus three Goucher students have begun an ambitious new project that will help locals of all ages identify safe and welcoming places (p. 7). And whether you’re blissfully in love, cynically bitter, or somewhere in between, this issue offers some great Valentine’s Day topics—from the silly to the serious. She’Baltimore and The Vagina Monologues (p. 8) offer important insights specifically related to violence against women, both productions are supporting domestic violence organizations. On the lighter side, check out the Valentine’s Day Gift Guide (p. 10) as well as the variety of events in and around the city (p. 17).




By Rachel Roth



Calendar of Events

O’Malley introduces Civil Marriage Protection Act; Indoor Yard Sale at GLCCB The Kids Are All Right: Gay Men’s Chorus performs with and for youth.



Comedian Wanda Sykes



By Frank Kaye

Images from the Creating Change Conference.


By terra hiltner and Anthony Moll

Benefit party and Baltimore-based play tackle domestic violence. By Querin Brown

Gay Bingo at Club Hippo Photos By terra hiltner

MICA presents Vagina Monologues to celebrate diverse women’s thematically-linked stories. By Kristi Metzger

headlinenews PAGE 8 NATIONAL & INTERNATIONAL NEWS By Rachel Roth

firstperson PAGE 15 SPEAKING OUT

Pariah: the semi-autobiographical tale of one African American lesbian By Rev. Irene Monroe

Maggie Beetz




Black History Month: A Look at Local Pride and Heritage. By Terri Solomon




Comedian Wanda Sykes brings her stand-up to Strathmore.

Cupid Ain’t Stupid: Valentine’s Gifts That’ll Getcha Some By Mikey Rox

By Rachel Roth

241 W. Chase Street • Baltimore, MD 21201 Phone 410.837.7748 • Fax 410.837.8889 Email

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Querin Brown, Frank Kaye, Kristi Metzger, Anthony Moll, Rev. Irene Monroe, Rachel Roth, Mikey Rox, Terri Solomon

Gay Life is a publication of the Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual, Transgender Community Center of Baltimore and Central Maryland (GLCCB). Gay Life is published every other Friday in Baltimore, Md., with distribution throughout the Mid-Atlantic region. Copyright 2011. 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.

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outfront COMMUNITY

Maryland Gov. O’Malley Introduces Marriage Bill Maryland’s Governor Martin O’Malley introduced the Civil Marriage Protection Act in the Maryland General Assembly January 23. The bill promotes marriage equality for all committed couples and protects religious freedom. It is similar to a bill that died in committee last year, but includes extended religious protections. The Baltimore Sun reported on January 25 that the bill includes four changes from last year: “It is now stated that religious leaders, as well as their institutions, are protected from lawsuits; that the state can’t withhold funds to penalize a religious institution that does not recognize same-sex marriages; and that the state can’t dictate religious doctrine. There also is an attempt to clarify that some programs run by religious institutions can exclude same-sex couples.” A January 29 Washington Post poll found that 50 percent of Marylanders now support gay and lesbian couples getting married; 44 percent are opposed. The bill is endorsed by the Maryland State Bar Association and the AFL-CIO in Maryland. Currently seven jurisdictions currently allow same-sex marriage: Massachusetts,


Connecticut, Iowa, Vermont, New Hampshire, New York, and Washington, D.C. Equality Maryland’s Executive Director Carrie Evans is encouraging supporter of the bill to participate in weekly phone banks to call voters in key districts and attend the February 13 Lobby Day in Annapolis. Visit 

Indoor Yard Sale to Benefit the GLCCB

Whether you want to call it an “Out of the closet sale” or even a “Drag it out of the closet sale,” the GLCCB’s indoor yard sale is sure to be filled with fabulous treasures, one of a kind items, great bargains and of course, lots of fun. Mark your calendars and come join the fun!

INDOOR YARD SALE TO BENEFIT THE GLCCB Saturday, February 25 • 8am-1pm The GLCCB • 241 W. Chase St. $10/table rental • FREE to the public To rent a table contact:


outfront YOUTH

Gay Men’s Chorus Supports Youth with The Kids Are All Right Concert Performance BY FRANK KAYE

The Gay Men’s Chorus of Washington continues its season with The Kids Are All Right, a concert that will spotlight the joys and struggles of growing up gay in today’s society through music and narration. The performance features the staged presentation of the Tomie dePaola book Oliver Button Is A Sissy, which will be narrated in a special guest appearance by author and gay rights activist Candace Gingrich-Jones. The narration is based on the story of a little boy who is teased by his parents and teachers for his ‘sissy’ pursuits, until he enters the school talent show. “The story of Oliver Button is one that I’m sure many in the audience (and on stage) can identify with—a boy who is different and doesn’t fit in,” GingrichJones explains. “Oliver is fortunate in that he finds support from his family and eventually his peers—but it doesn’t always work out that way.” Gingrich-Jones has served as a key advocate for the LGBT community which arose when her brother, Rep. Newt Gingrich, R-Ga., was elected House speaker. “I hope that audience members are inspired by the tale [of Oliver Button] and recognize that there are ways

they can contribute to more stories turning out like Oliver’s—volunteering or mentoring.” Gingrich-Jones currently serves as the Human Rights Campaign’s Youth & Campus Outreach associate director, and works to empower the next generation to fight for LGBT equality both in schools and beyond. “It’s true that Generation Equality, what we call the current group of under30s, is more supportive of LGBT equality than any other generation ever in our country, but that doesn’t automatically translate into every queer youth having or finding support,” she said. Gingrich-Jones further explains that by providing information to the parents, educators, neighbors, and community leaders they will be better prepared to support LGBT youth in the coming-out process. “America will be a vastly different place 25 years from now. The change we have seen over the past 40 years with regard to LGBT issues and equality will continue. I have no doubt that Generation Equality will see full LGBT equality in their lifetimes—but even once laws are passed there will still be ignorance and the work of educating about LGBT issues will go on.”


Candice Gingrich-Jones


Gingrich-Jones continued to express her excitement in the fact that, in addition to the Oliver Button story, that the Chorus will be joined by Dreams of Hope, a performing troupe of LGBT youth from Pittsburgh, Pa. “There is nothing more powerful than hearing someone’s story,” she explains. “Dreams of Hope will also inspire and move people to act.” In the second act, Dreams of Hope will present their newest work, “Being In, Being OUT,” which will consist of spoken word, movement, drama, per-

Dreams of Hope and founder Susan Haugh

cussion, and songs that explore belonging and its impact on LGBT youth. During this part of the performance, the young singers will join the Chorus to examine questions such as: ‘Where do you belong?’ and ‘What does it mean to belong?’ “Coming out is really important,” explained Susan Haugh, founder and artistic director for Dreams of Hope. “When you are living your truth, you become solid enough to realize that there is nothing wrong with you.” Haugh created her organization so kids could work creatively with professional artists in an accepting community where they could be themselves. “There are other queer youth choirs and theater groups, but we include contemporary dance, percussion, and other ways to express yourself,” said Haugh. “As the kids like to put it, they are ‘learning through artistic shenanigans.’” Haugh goes onto explain that Dreams of Hope provides a safe haven for audiences to discuss their own issues of gender and sexuality. “The reality is most people [in audiences] are not LGBT. Performing arts lets them hear stories and relate to the kids.” Dreams of Hope allows kids to be creative thinkers, and prepares them to articulate their emotions as they grow as performers. “They [students] learn artistic excellence, how to make art that relates to audiences and is effective aesthetically. At the same time, they learn professionalism.” Haugh reiterated the importance of understanding the significance of com-

ing out. “Learning about these kids’ experiences can change people’s behavior to young people.” For example, the Dreams of Hope troupe has performed for both judges and physicians of adolescent medicine. “They learned it’s important to have a visual sign (like a rainbow sticker) that LGBT kids can know it is a safe place. The judge learned that in order for LGBT kids to talk to them about the real reasons for skipping school (such as feeling unsafe there), the judge needs to talk to kids alone, with no parents or clerks.” Each year the youth of Dreams of Hope brainstorm a theme for the season and explore questions about that theme; this time they are excited to be working in conjunction with the Gay Men’s Chorus of Washington. After the show, the youth performers will be available in the lobby of the Lisner Auditorium to speak with audience members about the performance and its creation. The Gay Men’s Chorus of Washington, a group of 145 fabulous performers, will spotlight the struggle of LGBT youth in America today in song. Under the artistic direction of Jeff Buhrman, The Kids Are All Right will entertain and educate by celebrating and championing the uniqueness of every individual and their struggles. ■


Saturday, February 18 • 8pm ASL Interpreted • $25-55 Lisner Auditorium at George Washington University 730 21st St. NW • Washington, D.C. BALTIMORE’S GAY LIFE NEWSPAPER


Goucher Students Embark on Safe-Space Campaign BY ANTHONY MOLL

When young activists Matt Wolff, Ryan Derham and Andrew Huff had a hard time finding the welcome mat to Baltimore’s LGBT neighborhood, they decided to try a different approach: creating one themselves. Starting this month, Baltimoreans will begin spotting stickers that indentify some businesses in the Mt. Vernon neighborhood as organizations that are eager to identify themselves as welcoming and inclusive locations. The stickers, to be displayed at the entrances of participating businesses, offer a clear message printed atop a rainbow-bedecked outline of the city: “This space does not discriminate based on sexual orientation or gender identity.” The stickers are just one aspect of the Bmoreinclusive project (bmoreinclusive., a safe-space campaign started by the three scholars from Goucher College. Beyond icons indentifying inclusive businesses, the project aims to help mend the gap between the city and its LGBT community. In addition to the sticker, the group seeks to provide welcoming businesses with information about preventing the harassment of their LGBT patrons and to offer an online resource with information about improving Baltimore’s LGBT community. Along with an interactive map identifying participating organizations, visitors to the group’s website will find a list of both


local and national resources for LGBT people and allies, an outline of LGBTrelated legislation important to Baltimoreans, and a regularly updated blog. The three students began the project when they recognized the lack of a clearly marked LGBT neighborhood in Baltimore. The group knew that print and online resources pointed to Mt. Vernon as the city’s LGBT neighborhood, yet they found no way for visitors and newcomers to the community to clearly identify where this welcoming zone begins or ends. When the group looked to local and regional organizations during research for the project, they found that they were not alone in their concern; the Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual, and Transgender Community Center of Baltimore and Central Maryland (GLCCB) receives more than 2,500 phone calls, emails, and face-to-face questions each year about where to find businesses and services in Baltimore that are inclusive of the LGBT community. Spurred by this reality, the group created the Bmoreinclusive project both as an investment in the city and to fulfill a community service requirement for their studies. “We’re learning as we go,” explained Huff of the project. “We’re taking it one business at a time.” Still in its early stages, the project has already partnered with three organizations who have agreed to display the Bmoreinclusive symbol: Michaelangelo’s Pizza, Read Street Books, and the GLCCB, the home of Gay Life and a hub for LGBT resources in Baltimore. The project is similar to models already in place in locations such as Philadelphia, where rainbow strips and banners are affixed to the street signs in the LGBT neighborhood, and the Morningside Heights neighborhood of New York City, where Columbia University students launched a similar sticker-based project. Businesses interested in participating or learning more about the project can contact the group at Bmoreinclusive@ ■


outfront THEATER

‘V’ is for Victory, Valentine and Vagina BY KRISTI METZGER

The Maryland Institute College of the Arts (MICA) presents The Vagina Monologues to benefit V-Day, a day devoted to ending violence against women. The show will raise funds for the Family & Children’s Services of Central Maryland. Sarah Dodd, an interdisciplinary sculpture sophomore, is directing the show this year and was also part of last year’s performance. The Vagina Monologues, written by Eve Ensler in 1996, is made up of various monologues read by a number of different women. Each monologue somehow relates to the vagina. Ensler’s fascination with vaginas comes from “growing up in a violent society.”

“Women’s empowerment is deeply connected to their sexuality,” Eve stated. “I’m obsessed with women being violated and raped, and with incest. All of these things are deeply connected to our vaginas.” These are stories of sex, love, rape, menstruation, female genital mutilation, masturbation, birth, orgasm, the different names for the vagina, or as a physical aspect of the body. No matter what the subject matter, each of the monologues adheres to the theme of the vagina as a tool of female empowerment and individuality. Each year a new monologue is added to bring light to an issue currently affecting women all over the world.

Cast and Crew of The Vagina Monologues V-Day, which stemmed from The Vagina Monologues, typically takes place between February 1 and April 30 of each year. The performances benefit rape crisis centers and similar organizations worldwide. The play has been performed in communities and college cam-


Thursday, Feb. 9 • 8pm Friday, Feb. 10 • 8pm Saturday, Feb. 11 • midnight The Gateway: BBOX • 1601 W. Mount Royal Ave. $5-10 •


Baltimore-Based Play Tackles Domestic Violence in LGBT Relationships


When you love someone so much it literally hurts you, what will you decide to do next? She’Baltimore, a new play centered on domestic violence in the LGBT community, addresses this and several other questions. Director Ira Kip, a Caribbean New Yorker by way of Amsterdam, debuts her writing talents in a Baltimore love story turned violent. After receiving great reviews in Amsterdam, She’Baltimore is making its American debut right here in Charm City. This play “addresses the American social system and its relationship with communities that are often abstracted PAGE 8 • FEBRUARY 3 – FEBRUARY 16, 2012

from proper care due to orientation, socioeconomic circumstances, and at times, discrimination,” said Kip. “Baltimore audiences will definitely appreciate this,” said producer Nicol Moeller who has been involved with the play from the beginning. “It has the potential to bring together communities that don’t always interact.” She explained that the diversity of the cast, the LGBT subject matter, and the theatrical production itself will attract people from different communities. Ebone (Sarah Ellen Stephens), a boxer, and Linay (Taisha Cameron), a school teacher, have been living and loving to-

gether in the city for quite some time. While relations might seem smooth at first, they quickly turn rocky when unhealed wounds are revealed. One late night when Linay ends up in the emergency room, the nurse on duty begins the standard medical abuse assessment CONTINUED ON PAGE 15


Free Love Benefit: Feb. 14 • 8pm • $20 Play: Feb. 17- 26 • 8pm • $10-20 Loads of Fun Theater (LOF/t) 120 W. North Ave.





Legislator to Consider A Virginia LGBT Adoption Ban Virginia legislators are poised to battle adoption discrimination for LGBT people. According to the Associated Press, Sen. Adam Ebbin, D-Alexandria, introduced a bill that would prohibit Virginia from contracting with or funding agencies that discriminate against children or otherwise eligible prospective foster or adoptive parents solely on the basis of race, color, religion, national origin, sex, age, family status, disability, sexual orientation, or gender identity. “Adoption is a public act that goes through state courts, and no government agent should engage in discrimination,” Ebbin told the AP. He also said that he knows gay and lesbian parents and that they are some of the “best parents [he] knows.”


Poverty Law Center Demands B Southern End of LGBT Discrimination in Schools The Southern Poverty Law Center (SPLC) is demanding that Alabama’s Tuscaloosa County School System end its policy banning same-sex couples from attending prom and to stop censorship of speech supporting LGBT rights. A letter sent on January 25 to Brookwood High School (BHS), the Tuscaloosa County School System superintendent, and the county’s school board warned that school officials should respect the students’ constitutional rights or face a federal lawsuit. The letter was sent on behalf of BHS student Elizabeth Garrett who was forced by a school administrator to remove her sweatshirt which bore an expression of acceptance of gay people. “Too often, gay students also face serious harassment at school. No student should be singled out for unfair treatment or be denied their basic rights at school,” said Sam Wolfe, an SPLC attorney.

GLSEN Reports Bullying in Schools C Not Getting Better A study released by the Gay Lesbian & Straight Education Network (GLSEN) reports that homophobia and bullying in schools is prevalent as early as kindergarten. Moreover, the majority of teachers feel unequipped to handle LGBT questions in the classroom. The study, “Playgrounds and Prejudice: Elementary School Climate in the United States,” finds that the most common forms of biased language in elementary schools, heard regularly by both students and teachers, is use of the word “gay” as a pejorative.

D Colorado Governor: “Pass Civil Unions” Colorado Gov. John Hickenlooper has declared his support of civil unions. In his State of the State address on January 12, the reports that Hickenlooper called on the Legislature to pass legislation legalizing same-sex civil unions. “As we strive to make Colorado healthier, we believe in equal rights for all regardless of race, creed, gender, or sexual orientation,” he said in the address. “We don’t believe we should legislate what happens inside a church or place of worship,” he added, “but government should treat all people equally. It’s time to pass civil unions.”

Scout Calls for Cookie Boycott E Girl Over Transgender Members Upon hearing that a Colorado troop extended membership to a transgender child, a protester, identified only as Taylor, decided to take action. The Daily News is reporting that Taylor—who wears a Girl Scout sash—recorded an eight-minute video to argue that allowing a transgender child into the organization goes against scout values. In the video, she urges people to refuse to buy Girl Scout cookies until the organization agrees to ban transgender members. According to the article, the video has received more than 100,000 hits as of January 12, and it sparked response videos from people praising the Girl Scouts for allowing transgender kids into troops. In Colorado, one mom, Amy Thieme told 9News that she is using the video to encourage people to buy more cookies to voice their support for transgender scout, Bobby Montoya, and the Girl Scouts. When Montoya was kicked out of her troop in Louisiana, a Colorado troop welcomed her.






President of Ecuador Appoints Lesbian to Cabinet

The woman who led the drive against the “clinics” claiming to “cure” gays is now Ecuador’s Health Minister. In line with his LGBT-friendly record, Ecuadorean President Rafael Correa appointed Carina Vance Mafla, who is a lesbian, to the position. According to Blabbeando, Ecuadoran LGBT-advocacy organization Equal Rights Now (Igualdad de Derechos Ya!) hopes that the newly appointed minister finally take decisive action and shut down the religious “clinics.” They are also optimistic that Vance Mafla will C be proactive in ending current delays in the distribution of HIV medications and creating guidelines to prevent disB crimination against LGBT individuals at A hospitals and health centers.

German Soccer President Implores

B Gay Players to Come Out

Outgoing German Soccer Federation President Theo Zwanziger is calling for gay soccer players to come out of the closet. reports that, at an even organized by soccer federation to specifically address homosexuality in the sport, Zwanziger told attendees that “society [is] more understanding than a few years ago.” While he acknowledged the difficulty, one often faces when coming out, he said that “it is time for gay players to “to have the courage to declare themselves.”

C All Same-Sex Unions Performed in Canada Legal Canada’s Justice Minister, Rob Nicholson, cleared up the issue of the legality of certain same-sex marriages. In response to reports that Justice Department lawyers claim that a lesbian foreign couple married in Canada could not apply for divorce there because their marriage wasn’t valid. The article, published on, also reported that Nicholson also promised that the Canadian government has “no intention of reopening the debate on the definition of marriage,” reiterating that the 2005 Civil Marriage Act stands. But it will be amended; Nicholson said the Civil Marriage Act will be changed so that all marriages performed in Canada that aren’t recognized by the couple’s own jurisdiction will still be recognized in Canada. ■


Cupid Ain’t Stupid Valentine’s Gfts That’ll Get You Some BY MIKEY ROX

Christmas just ended, but there’s another gift-buying season right around the corner. The best thing about Valentine’s Day, however, is that it really is the thought that matters. (People lie about that at Christmastime, ya know.) To help you pick the perfect gift for your sweetie this Valentine’s Day, here’s our list of wallet-friendly but sometimes still-frisky ideas that he or she will love to unwrap.

Kyle Underwear

There’s a bounty of underwear companies vying to cover your booty, but this year we’ve chosen one that’s reaching for the stars. Kyle’s recently released Sky collection features three color combinations, all with blue hues. Made with a cotton and elastane blend, the briefs, boxer briefs, and jocks provide plenty of room upfront and full back coverage, making them easy to slip into and even easier to take off. $18-$22;

eCupid the Movie

From writer-director-producer JC Calciano (Is It Just Me?) comes this fluffy love story about bored-with-his-life Marshall who ends his relationship with his boyfriend of seven years and goes looking for love online. Entering a world he’s been unfamiliar with for so long, Marshall gets more than he bargained for until a mysterious waitress

PAGE 10 • FEBRUARY 3 – FEBRUARY 16, 2012

Blanket, an ultra-soft, 10-heat setting, oversized warming system of pure bliss. The blankets, available in three neutral colors—white, honey, and chocolate— come with a 5-year limited warranty, an innovative ComfortSet auto-off digital control, and an unofficial guarantee that something naughty will happen underneath. $99-$129;

What I Love About You

played by Morgan Fairchild shows up to set him straight. Not literally, of course. Don’t go gettin’ all PC on us. $24.99;

The Chocolate Cellar Wine

Many gifts come and go, but this guided journal where one partner is prompted by questions and fill-in-the-blanks about the other is a memory that will last a lifetime. Best-selling authors Kate and David Marshall created What I Love About You to celebrate love and offer a fresh way for couples to say those three special words to one another. Playful and tender, this is the ideal gift for the person in your life who makes your pulse race. It’s also super gay-friendly, too. A lesbian gender studies professor in Missouri approved of it enough to buy it and fill it out as a gift for her partner. $11.19;

Before you pop in your newly purchased copy of eCupid, uncork a bottle of The Chocolate Cellar, a delicately balanced wine that features the aromas and flavors of candied cherry and decadent dark chocolate that unfold in layers across the palate, giving way to a long and lingering finish. Red wine lovers will enjoy this pleasing vino made from the finest vinifera grapes tinged with the taste of cocoa. $12-$15;

Therapedic Deluxe Royal Mink Heated Blanket

If you’re starting to notice a trend here—new undies, a festive film, a bottle of chocolate-lace wine—you’re right. Date night all snuggly and warm on the couch is almost complete with the Therapedic Deluxe Royal Mink Heated

Bear Hugs & Kisses Valentine’s Day Chocolate Gift Box

Show your bear how much he means with this grizzly gift set that includes six


and large (16 oz.)—and, get this, 25,000 color combinations. Portable and unbreakable, KeepCups are made of four interlocking components: the cup, the lid, the plug, and an insulating band where customers can etch their personal preferences for baristas so they know exactly what you want when you want it. $8.50-$14.20; individually wrapped milk, white, and multicolor chocolate pops, delivered in an elegant gift box with an ivory embossed gift card. Each pop is handmade, and two are customizable with the message of your choice. Just keep it short and sweet; no need to make the chocolatiers blush. $30.99;

U-Star Erotic Novels

“I Love You” Street Art Print

For the art lover in your life, iPhone photography pioneer Greg Schmigel is offering a limited-edition 16-by-20 print of genuine street art emblazoned with the words “I Love You” in cursive black paint on a bright-red brick wall, captured on New York City’s Lower East Side. Each print (there’s only 50 available) will be signed and hand numbered by the artist himself. Schmigel, whose work includes a bevy of other thoughtprovoking pieces, has led the movement in iPhone photography (it’s almost unbelievable how photos taken on a tiny phone can be so brilliant) and has had is work adorn the walls of galleries in the United States, Spain, Italy, and Germany. $150;


ecstasy in and out of the bedroom. The package includes one Tri-Phoria Intimate Massager with three interchangeable tips, a Vibrating Mini, two vibrating rings, a lavender soy candle, green tea massage lotion, lavender-scented bath salts, and an elegant satin bag for discreet storage. Because you just know your momma’s gonna snoop around your room when you leave her unattended during that unexpected visit. $84.99;

No matter how well you know your honey, they can still be hard to buy for. Let take out the guesswork with its wide selection of premade baskets that contain something for everyone. From a “Movie Night” basket filled with candy, a DVD, and the essentials to make homemade popcorn, to the “Classic Male,” brimming with shaving necessities like a new razor set, shaving cream, after-shave smoother, and preshave oil, the list of available and personalized baskets goes on and on. $50-$450;

Trojan Intimate Indulgences + Vibrating Mini™ + 2 Vibrating Rings

A nice-but-naughty gift for both male and female couples, the Trojan Intimate Indulgence gift set will facilitate hours of

Ever fantasized about your partner in unpredictable predicaments? U Star Novels makes it possible with its line of fun, personalized romantic and erotic same-sex novels. Customers can provide up to 30 different features and traits about themselves and their partner, including names, where they live, where they work, eye color, hair color, favorite scents, and many more characteristics that are weaved throughout a 160-180 page paperback novel that details all those dirty little thoughts that have been running through your mind. $35.95-$39.95;

Mikey Rox is an award-winning journalist and blogger who lives in New York City with his husband and their two dogs. Follow him on Twitter @mikeyrox.

If your cutie is a coffee lover, consider the KeepCup, an eco-conscious alternative to the disposable ones he or she tosses in the trash on a daily basis. It’s the world’s first barista-standard reusable coffee (or tea or hot chocolate) cup that’s available in four sizes—extra small (4 oz.), small (8 oz.), medium (12 oz.),



The Past, Present, and Future of Baltimore’s AfricanAmerican LGBT Community

By Terri Solomon

The Past is Prologue for Baltimore Heritage There is queer history contained in the city buildings we drive, bike, or walk past on a daily basis, but most of us don’t know it. Now, a local historic and architectural preservation organization is delving into the stories of Baltimore’s lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender community members, and featuring noteworthy locations through a walking tour. “At Baltimore Heritage, we believe in preserving Baltimore buildings that tell the history of the city,” said Phillip Lovett, who joined the 52 year-old nonprofit organization as a Baltimore City Neighborhood Fellow. Lovett, a graduate student at the University of Maryland’s School of Social Work, was attracted to the mission of Baltimore Heritage and eager to examine Baltimore’s LGBT past. Baltimore Heritage had previously focused on civil rights based projects, such as the city’s historical connection to its Irish immigrants and the African-American history of segregation and civil rights. With Lovett, a “same-gender loving male and African-American” on staff, Baltimore Heritage decided to “explore that component of our history,” he said. The group started a historical exploratory study that researched the rich LGBT history for both African-Americans and community members of other races in Baltimore. Lovett spoke to local community members with decades of knowledge about Charm City’s lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender happenings. Interview subjects included an activist, a transgender business owner, a journalist, a religious leader and an attorney, and ages ranged from 40-85 years old. PAGE 12 • FEBRUARY 3 – FEBRUARY 16, 2012

Among those who contributed to the initial exploratory study, Lovett names Paulette Young, Louis Hughes, Richard Olozia, Jeffrey Grabelle, Monica Stevens, Anne Gordon, Jim Becker, Evelyn Eldredge, Carlton Smith, Andre Powell, and Michael Slatkin as being particularly helpful in telling their stories and creating a timeline of LGBT history in the city. Louis Hughes calls himself an “activist emeritus.” At age 67, he’s shaped much of the early history of the African-American LGBT community in Baltimore. Hughes helped to start a local chapter of the National Coalition of Black Gays in the city in 1978. Meetings occurred at the original public site of the GLCCB, at 2133 Maryland Avenue. Before that, Dana Rathmayer was hosting meetings of the GLCCB in his apartment at 930 N. Charles St. “I really felt moved to start an AfricanAmerican LGBT group,” said Hughes. “We needed our own space and our own voice.” He was involved with the National Coalition’s March on Washington, D.C. in 1979, as well as the Third World Conference, which discussed issues of integration and organization for LGBT people of color. “I’m not the only voice. There are many more voices,” said Hughes. He likes this latest venture of Baltimore Heritage because “it involves all segments of the community, interviewing people who were there. Those who will give this tour lived this.” “We found that not only is Baltimore a rich place in its people, but it is also very rich in the fact that LGBT people made a home here,” said Lovett. “The first LGBT meeting (part of the Gay Liberation Front from 1969-1975) to take place here was in a Little Italy apartment, and from there it branched out to Charles Vil-

Phillip Lovett

African-Americans was at the Center, with Billy Jones coming to Baltimore to speak.” Hughes also notes the importance of churches in early black LGBT gatherings. “The Gay Health Clinic [now Chase Brexton Health Services] started at the Metropolitan Community Church of Baltimore, at 23rd and St. Paul streets, where people of color were ministers or assistant ministers. Many of them were African-American women,” said Hughes. Baltimore Heritage and Lovett are in the midst of creating an LGBT history walking tour that will focus on areas of interest in Charles Village, and will later highlight buildings in Mt. Vernon. The tour is scheduled to begin in April 2012 at Normals Books in Waverly; participants would walk down to North Avenue and stop at significant buildings along the way. There is currently a planning group, composed of LGBT community members and allies, but Lovett needs more community input to make this venture a success. “We would love for people to become more involved in these conversations about how to shape a walking tour around LGBT history,” said Lovett. He urges everyone with a desire to get involved to call Baltimore Heritage at 410.332.9992 or to email him at Lovett@ “Because people are working hand in hand with creating this tour through Baltimore Heritage, they are very excited to share information, give advice and offer support,” said Lovett. “It’s a very open environment and there has been a positive response.”

Back to the Basics with Black Pride 2012 Kevin Clemons lage and then to Mt. Vernon. There were no gay organizations and no government funding, but they still found ways to connect and organize.” He noted that there were several places in Baltimore where African-American LGBT members congregated. The Portal, a now defunct African-American LGBT center at 302 Park Avenue, and Club Bunns, a popular hangout for LGBT African-Americans at 608 W. Lexington Street, were highlighted as spaces significant for LGBT people of color in Baltimore. And although Hughes found early black leadership at the Center “like assimilation to me,” with mainly white, gay men in control and no resources for African-Americans listed in any guide, he does consider it historically significant. “It was an incubator for many gay and lesbian events. The first forum for LGBT

It’s been ten years since the first Black Pride in Baltimore, and while much has changed in our city and our world, many issues affecting the LGBT African-American community remain the same. Kevin Clemons, the newly nominated chair of Baltimore Black Pride, is also one of the original founders of the weeklong celebration. “Back then, the intention was to have more social things, and we worked on workshops for health, finance and self-esteem,” said Clemons. “Over the years, the challenge has been that people use all the new technology available to get information instead of coming to workshops.” Along with the challenges of a digital age, Baltimore Black Pride has faced the same stereotypes people associate with over-the-top Pride celebrations—excessive drinking and dancing the night away at the expense of educating a younger generation, working on political issues or giving back to the community. BALTIMORE’S GAY LIFE NEWSPAPER

“There is a perception that Pride is all about party, but I know with us there has been a push to get back to workshops. We are finding that it goes beyond a party, and issues are there long after the party is over,” Clemons said. “There is still no escaping diabetes and heart disease for African-Americans, and STIs and HIV in the gay community.” To address many of these daily struggles, the organizers of Baltimore Black Pride 2012 plan to sponsor a community activity in every month leading up to Pride, focused on health, social and economic issues affecting the African-American LGBT community. “Then there is a reason to celebrate in October,” said Clemons. And let’s not forget the contributions of the next generation! Last year’s Black Pride featured a Youth Town Hall meeting, a summit, and a mixer and fundraiser for youth. Clemons, who describes himself as “being young a thousand years ago,” sees African-American elders giving young LGBT individuals more responsibility and opportunity to play an active role in


Pride planning. “Part of our mission is equipping our young people to become leaders, so that there will be an infusion of new blood. We have two youth on our board, and because they are active, we let them come up with workshops and activities for young people,” he said. “Youth know their agenda better than we do, and they are starting to get some ownership because we are giving them that role. It’s theirs anyway.” This year’s Baltimore Black Pride will feature youth gatherings, workshops, an annual fundraiser, and a variety of fun and educational events. Community members who want to become involved in planning should call 443.691.9669, or go to, where you can follow a link to their Facebook page. “Once the fanfare is over and the dust settles, you need to keep the message and the movement going. Part of our goal for this year is to address the needs of the community and to be focused on the political component,” said Clemons. “You have more voice than you think you have.” ■


firstperson SPEAKING OUT

Aasha Davis as “Bina” and Adepero Oduye as “Alike” in Pariah ©2011 Focus Features

A Sister Outsider in “Pariah” BY REV. IRENE MONROE

Seldom do I see my image anywhere, especially portrayed in non-stereotypical and non-heterosexist ways on the silver screen. As a matter of fact, if you Google “black lesbians” or “black lesbians in film” you’ll get a plethora of porn sites to visit. But writer-director Dee Rees’s semi-autobiographical coming-of-age drama Pariah gives me a glimpse of my younger self growing up in Brooklyn.  Pariah is about Alike (ah-LEE-kay), a virginal 17-year-old African American lesbian high school student living in the Fort Greene section of Brooklyn who doesn’t know how to come out to her parents, who’s eager to have her first sexual experience, and who’s not sure of the type of butch lesbian she wants to be—“soft stud,” one of the “aggressive lesbians” (a subculture of young butch lesbians who adopt a gangster hip-hop persona to compete for femme women), or something totally different. “Alike knows that she loves women; that’s not the question. The question is ‘how to be,’” Rees told the Boston Globe. “And so, in my own struggle, a large part of my question was how to be in the world.” One of the ways of defining how to be in the world, especially for high schoolers, is through clothes. But with a mother—

PAGE 14 • FEBRUARY 3 – FEBRUARY 16, 2012

Audrey (Kim Wayans)—who demonstrates zero tolerance for her daughter’s non-gender-conforming ways, especially exhibited by Alike’s taste for non-frilly femme attire, we see Alike forced to be a gender chameleon—changing into her butch togs going to school and out of them going home. Pariah wouldn’t be an authentic black coming-out tale if religious homophobia didn’t show its countenance on someone. And Audrey is that person.  With the hopes of her shy tomboyish daughter blossoming into a more socially friendly and feminine girl, Audrey convinces a churchgoer that their daughters, who are in the same class, should walk to school together for safety reasons. And not surprising to those of us of the Black Church, Alike’s first sexual experience is with one of the churchgoer’s daughters. To find antecedents or self-reflections of yourself, especially in American films, is difficult, which is why Pariah’s title and theme of portraying black lesbian life, albeit marginalized in both African American church and white LGBTQ communities, in a positive and realistic light, is thoroughly refreshing.  Occasionally, however, we will see present-day portrayals of black lesbians


Vagina Monologues CONTINUED FROM PAGE 8 on major television channels and in major movie houses across the country, but not by out black lesbians. For example, in the 2009 film Precious, Paula Patton plays Ms. Blu Rain, a lesbian teacher that helps Precious (Gabourey Sidibe) embrace her life’s worth and her sexuality. Patton inspires Precious to learn to read, and to write, giving her a daily writing assignment that eventually leads Precious coming into her own. And with Patton understanding both the New York welfare system and the New York Public School system, she is portrayed in the film as both an intellectual and activist who’s not going to let Precious fail or fall under her watch.  Another example, in 1996, we have Queen Latifah’s spot-on portrayal of a butch lesbian in the movie Set It Off, which, of course, set off a conflagration of queries about her sexual orientation. Last summer Latifah’s character on the show Single Ladies—which she executive produces—was accidentally outed, and worked out in a positive way for the character. Viewers and the blogosphere began to speculate that Latifah was channeling her personal life through her smallscreen character. But films written and directed by women of color that reach the major silver screen are rare, and by LBTQ women of color, it’s even rarer. The last time I saw a film written and directed by a LBTQ woman of color that reached the level of mass distribution and international acclaim as Pariah was sixteen years ago. In 1996, Cheryl Dunye wrote, directed and starred in her first film—The Watermelon Woman—which was also the first African American lesbian feature film. Dunye’s “mockumentary” is a scathing critique of the racist cinematic representation of black women. The protagonist

of the film, played by Dunye, makes a film about an obscure black actress from the 1930s known for playing stereotypical “mammy” roles relegated to black actresses during that era. In this faux-cinemaverite account of a black lesbian filmmaker uncovering the hidden histories of black women live—straight and LBTQ— controversial cultural critic Camille Paglia makes a cameo appearance informing Dunye that the Mammy archetype, once represented a black goddess figure. And unbeknownst to the general public, 20 feature films have been directed by black lesbians since Dunye’s The Watermelon Woman. Dunye’s mockumentary came out during the height of black queer cinema, from 1991 to 1996, dubbed the “Golden Age,” where black lesbian films were predominately documentaries seen by unfortunately small audiences.  “That was the period of time when we had the most women producing the widest variety of work. Approximately 50 percent of all work produced was made during that five-year time period. Very little work is being produced today by out black lesbian media makers. So maybe Dee Rees is part of the trend of the mainstreaming of niche content that we see happening across all media platforms,” African American lesbian filmmaker Yvonne Welbon, founder and director of Sisters in Cinema, told The Root reporter Salamishah Tillet. It’s my hope that Pariah will be part of the trend of the mainstreaming of niche content. Black lesbian cinematic representation is long overdue. ■


Opens Friday, Feb 3 at The Charles Theater 1711 N. Charles St. • 410.727.FILM • $9.50, $7.50 matinee

puses for the better part of 15 years. Wilson College graduate Stephanie Lingle reflects fondly on her participation in the campus’s 2003 production of the play. “It’s such a moving and powerful piece I couldn’t not be a part of it,” she said. “I remember practicing my monologue at work and completely captivating my coworkers. There’s something refreshing about being

She’Baltimore CONTINUED FROM PAGE 8 questionnaire. “Question #1: Are you in a relationship in which you have been physically hurt or threatened by your partner?” When Linay responds to the subsequent questions with “she,” the nurse is at first dismissive, and eventually instructs Linay to contact the police because she was in a “fight with a girl” and that is an assault charge not domestic abuse. She is administered no further care. This play highlights the “undercurrent of violence” that is occurring on a global scale; Moeller has been contacted by people as far as Australia and Puerto Rico offering their stories in reaction to the production. “People would be ignorant to think this is not happening just because no one’s talking about it,” she said. On Valentine’s Day, February 14, Kip and Moeller are hosting a benefit to raise awareness about this issue. The “Free Love Benefit” will

able to render a radio DJ speechless!” Working with Jane Fonda, Ensler produced and directed the first all-transgender performance of The Vagina Monologues in 2004. Readings were by 18 notable trans women and included a new monologue revolving around the experiences and struggles of trans women. V-Day’s spotlight campaign for 2012 will focus on the women and girls of Haiti. Since the January 2010 earthquake, Haiti has seen increased violence and sexual violence against its female citizens. ■

showcase a portion of the play and raise money for The House of Ruth, a domestic violence shelter for battered women and their children. “This will be an evening out to celebrate love and partnership,” said Moeller. “We’re promoting love while raising money for a good cause.” The benefit will include music and dancing, food and drinks, plus an auction and a chance to win two Jet Blue tickets. The play runs from February 17 to February 26. There will be open discussion with the cast, the audience, and special guests following each performance. Discount rates are available to students, LGBT organizations, and non-violence support groups. Student rush tickets are also available at the box office one hour prior to each show. The show’s title, She’Baltimore, is inspired by the writer’s love of hip hop and use of “Bawlmerese” (Baltimore dialect). “If Baltimore was a lady, its personality would be embodied by Ebone and Linay. Beautiful, painful, cultural, diverse, and RAW,” said Kip. ■

CORRECTION In the January 20 issue of Gay Life we listed “Ziasco’s” under our LGBT Nightlife Guide. The correct spelling of the lesbian-owned bar and lounge is “Ziascoz.” Gay Life regrets the error.


1313 E. Pratt St. 410.276.5790


Reach the local gay market... Advertise in Gay Life! Email us at to place your ad today! VOLUME 34, NUMBER 2 • PAGE 15

Building Community Since 1977 The GLCCB is proud to offer a wide range of free and low-cost programs, events, and services to the community. . Unless otherwise noted, all events are held at the GLCCB located at 241 W. Chase Street, Baltimore. For more information please visit or call 410-837-5445.





Meets 2nd, 4th, and 5th Thursdays at 7:30pm in room 202 For info contact

Meets 2nd Saturday at 8:00pm in room 201 For info contact


GIG: Baltimore Trans-Masculine Alliance

A collective group committed to providing a safe, confidential, and supportive space for LBTQ women of all colors.

A social group for LBTQ women who want to meet new people while enjoying fun activities. Meets off-site, dates and times vary For info contact


An open support group for adult men who love other men with the objective of empowering participants to take care of themselves and each other. Topics of discussion include coming out, homophobia, relationships, and more provided in a safe and supportive environment. Meets 2nd and 4th Mondays at 6:00pm in room 201 For info contact

A support group for transgender, gender queer, and anyone who varies from traditional gender expression.

A support group for FTMs.

Meets 4th Saturday at 6:00pm in room 202 For info contact

GIG: Tran*quality

A support group for MTFs Meets 4th Saturday at 8:00pm in room 201 For info contact


A support and resource group for significant others, friends, family, and allies of transgender persons. Meets 4th Saturday at 8:00pm in room 202



A peer support group for men who are HIV+. Meets EVERY Wednesday at 7:00pm in room 202 For info contact


A supportive group for youth and young adults 24 years of age and under. Youth are welcome to drop-in and try out this successful long running program that features discussion sessions, special events, guest speakers, and trips. Meets EVERY Saturday at 12:00pm in room 201 For info contact


A youth-led, artist facilitated art program for young adults 24 years of age and under. There are weekly arts workshops, youth art exhibitions, and trips to local museums. Artistic expertise is NOT required to join us and Express Yourself! Meets EVERY Saturday at 3:30pm in room 101 For info contact Denise at or 410-837-5445 ext. 15

COMMUNITY PROGRAMS The GLCCB offers a wide range of community events including art shows, musical performances, variety shows, special events, and projects. For more info look for separate ads in the Gay Life newspaper or visit our website at


Gentle beginners’ yoga with instructor Tim Hurley, RYT. Drop-ins WELCOME! $9.00 per person, per class EVERY Sunday at 3:30pm in room 201


FREE and confidential testing provided by the Baltimore City Health Dept. EVERY Wednesday from 5:00pm to 8:00pm on 3rd Floor


LGBTQ centered AA recovery groups, welcoming to all regardless of sexual orientation or gender identity. Meets EVERY Monday at 8:30pm, Thursday at 8:30pm, and Saturday at 6:30pm in room 201


an open meeting of Alcoholics Anonymous, which provides a safe place for those with HIV or other health related issues. All are welcome. Meets every Sunday at 6:15pm in room 201 For info contact


Men’s Rap group for men in recovery.

The GLCCB is the publisher of

The GLCCB is the producer of

Meets EVERY Sunday at 11:30am in Room 201 PAGE 16 • FEBRUARY 3 – FEBRUARY 16, 2012



Saturday, February 4

Saturday, February 11

Baltimore Frontrunners: Running/walking club for LGBT individuals and friends. Assemble 8:45am, run 9am. Reassemble for brunch 10am. Panera Bread, 3600 Boston St.,

YES! Consent Is Sexy Dance Party: Dance your panties off — if you want to, that is — at the launch of a new underwear line, specifically engineered to reinforce the practice of consent. $8-12. 10pm. Golden West Cafe, 1105 W. 36th St.,

The Life and Science of Benjamin Banneker: Actor and professional storyteller, Bob Smith presents the story of the first African American mathematician and amateur astronomer, who calculated ephemerides for almanacs from 1792-1797. FREE. 10am & Noon. Towson University, Smith Hall Room 326, 8000 York Rd., Sunrize: The Musical: Iron Crow Theatre’s Joseph Ritsch presents his loving satire of the great divas of contemporary musical theatre. A wine & hors d’oeuvres reception with dancing onstage after the performance. $25. 8pm. Theatre Project, 45 W. Preston St.,



Wanda Sykes Comes Home Wanda Sykes, named “one of the one of the 25 funniest people in America” by Entertainment Weekly, is returning to the city where she got her start. In her debut performance at Strathmore, the Emmy-award-winning comedian and actress does what she loves most: stand-up. Sykes performed for the first time in front of a live audience in 1987 at the Coors Light Super Talent Showcase in Washington, D.C. She continued to hone her talents in local venues while working at the NSA until she moved to New York City in 1992. The fearlessly funny Sykes is known throughout the world for her work in television and film, appearing in HBO’s Curb Your Enthusiasm, The New Adventures of Old Christine, Evan Almighty, Monster-In-Law, and more. She also voiced characters in films such as Dreamwork’s Over the Hedge, Paramount Pictures’ Barnyard, Brother Bear 2, Rio and Ice Age: Continental Drift. In 2004, Sykes released her first book, Yeah, I Said It, a collection of essays touching on life, family and current events.


Friday February 10 • 8pm • $39-99 Music Center at Strathmore • 5301 Tuckerman Ln. • North Bethesda 301.581.5100 •

DATEBOOK Friday, February 3 The Trial of One Short-Sighted Black Woman vs. Mammy Louise and Safreeta Mae: The story of a woman who decides to take two longstanding, unfavorable stereotypes of black women — the jovial, asexual and servile Mammy and the hyper-sexualized, Jezebel-like Safreeta Mae — to court for promoting what she feels are negative images that have impeded her ascension up the entertainment industry’s corporate ladder. 7pm. Arena Players, 801 McCulloh St., Lea Gilmore in Concert: One of the world’s most respected gospel, blues, jazz and inspirational singers is also a social activist who has lent her voice to advocacy for the under-served around the world and is a staunch supporter for marriage equality and LGBT rights. $17-19. 8pm. Common Ground on the Hill, 6200 N Charles St.,

Bob Marley’s Birthday Soul Shakedown Party: Andre Mazelin curates a night of Jamaican roots music & culture to celebrate the visionary’s birthday. Jamaican cuisine by Chef Mama Saray’s Taste of International & Andre’s famous Rum Punch. $7-12. Come early for a film for an extra $5. Dinner sold separately. 7:30-11:30pm. Creative Alliance at the Patterson, 3134 Eastern Ave., Tilted Torch presents Amber Ray: The NY-based, award-winning burlesque performer shares her secrets and methods used to build her international career/ persona. $25-45. 1 & 2:30pm. Chez Joule, 2616 Urbana Dr., Silver Spring,

Tuesday, February 7 National Black HIV/AIDS Awareness Day: The national HIV testing and treatment community mobilization initiative that focuses on education, testing, involvement, and treatment. For Posters, fact sheets, events visit:

Opening Reception & Curator’s Talk: Afro-Asiatic Allegory: Guest curator, Professor J. Susan Isaacs, discusses new work by Iona Rozeal Brown whose Asian cultural interpretations offer profound commentaries about mimicry, gender and constructions of culture. FREE. 2-4pm. Exhibition runs thru 5/12.Asian Arts & Culture Center; Towson University 8000 York Rd., CAMP Rehoboth Chorus to Celebrate Love!: The third-annual show features a special, guest performance by the Rock Creek Singers, an ensemble group from the Gay Men’s Chorus of DC, how-stopping solos, and the Chorus’ signature, campy opening number. $15. 7pm. Epworth United Methodist Church, 19285 Holland Glade Rd, Rehoboth Beach, DE,

Sunday, February 12 Grey Gardens: A screening of the 1975 documentary, Grey Gardens, as part of the Under Cover exhibition. Like the art on display, the film explores themes of boundaries between the private and public, as well as concepts of shelter, protection, and privacy. Refreshments. FREE. 7pm. MICA: Brown Center: Falvey Hall, 1301 W. Mount Royal Ave.,

Monday, February 13

Yo Coquelicot: The creative theater company incorporates a variety of theatrical elements in every production, including mime, dance, live music, puppetry, and clown. FREE. Noon. Lansburgh Theatre, 450 7th St. NW, Washington, DC,

Lobby Day: Show your support for marriage equality. Confirmed speakers include Candace & Rebecca Gingrich Jones and Sen. Allan Kittlemen. FREE. 6pm. Lawyer’s Mall (in front of State Capitol), 100 State Circle, Annapolis, [Check for pre-Lobby Day trainings at the GLCCB]

Rainbow Youth Alliance of Baltimore County: A support group for LGBT and questioning teens and allies. RYA is a safe place to ask questions, find mutual support, and learn information pertinent to their lives. Contact: RYABaltimoreCounty@gmail. com. FREE. 7:30-9:30pm. Towson Unitarian Universalist Church, 1710 Dulaney Valley Rd. Lutherville,

Tuesday, February 14

Wednesday, February 8 The Vagina Monologues: (see article p. 8) Thru 2/11. 8pm. $5-10. The Gateway: BBOX, 1601 W. Mount Royal Ave.

Valentine’s Day

Support Trans Rights in Baltimore County: Wear purple to this public hearing to show your support and send a clear message to the council. FREE. 1:30pm. Baltimore County Council, 400 Washington Ave. Court House 2nd floor. She’Baltimore: (See article p. 7) $20. 8pm. Thru 2/26. The LOF/t Theater, 120 W. North Ave.,

BINGO! Come for happy hour, stay for Bingo. Cash prizes and progressive jackpot. Enjoy drink specials, appetizers, and raffles all night. Hosted by Roger Dimick. Proceeds benefit GLCCB. 8:30pm. Club Hippo, 1 W. Eager St. 410.547.0069,

Love is a Battlefield: The ANTI Valentine’s Video Party: Shot through the heart? Someone give love a bad name? Or does the entire day just make you sick? Then grab a drink and enjoy short films that scoff at romance and revel in bitterness. $5. 7:30pm. Marquee Lounge at the Paterson, 3134 Eastern Ave,

Transgender Issues Working Group: Meets every other Wednesday. Registration required. FREE. 7pm. Equality Maryland, 1201 S. Sharp St., Contact Owen@

Howard County PFLAG Monthly Meeting: Support group and Q&A for parents of LGBT children. FREE. 7:30pm. Owen Brown Interfaith Center, 7246 Cradlerock Way, Columbia,

Thursday, February 9

Rainbow Youth Alliance of Howard County: A support group for LGBT and questioning teens and allies. RYA is a safe place to ask questions, find mutual support, and learn information pertinent to their lives. For more info, contact: or call 410.280.9047. Owen Brown Interfaith Center, 7246 Cradlerock Way, Columbia,

Tony DeSare Presents a BSO Valentine: Called the “lean baby Sinatra with burning brown eyes and flashing teeth” by The New York Times, the charming Tony DeSare sets the stage for romance by performing American classics. $28-88. 8pm. Thru 2/12. Meyerhoff Symphony Hall, 1212 Cathedral St.,

Friday, February 10 Wanda Sykes: See Spotlight

THE BI(G) LIFE: Riffing on memoir, savvy in their cultural critique, and laced with humor, these two thirty-minute original solo thesis performances explore unique intersections of race, gender, size and sexuality $5. 8pm. Thru 2/5. Georgetown University: Davis Performing Arts Center, 3700 O St., NW Washington, DC,

Winter Festival of Wonders: The three-day-celebration of Wonder, Magic & Play featuring four ticketed performances: The Wizards Ball Festival Kick-off, a Show of Magic, a concert by Telesma, and Dr. Nodnol’s Sunday Circus. $10-25. Noon-5pm. Thru 2/12. Area 405, 405 E. Oliver St.,

Wine Tasting: Get your weekend started off right with complimentary tastings of wines from around the world. Discounts on bottles included in tastings. FREE. 5-8pm. Fridays. Spirits of Mt Vernon, 900 N. Charles St., 410.727.7270,

12 Emily Dickinson Poems by composer Aaron Copland: Students perform works written in 1949-1950 when Copland was at the height of his career. FREE. 6pm. Towson University; Center for the Arts Recital Hall, 8000 York Rd.,

Eclipse! at Club Orpheus: Dance to a mesmerizing light show with video projectors, lasers and strobes. 9pm every Friday. 18+. Club Orpheus, 1003 E. Pratt St.,

Whodunnit for Hire Murder Mystery Dinner: Celebrate Valentine’s Day with a little murder, mystery and mayhem. $55. 6:30pm. Baldwin’s Station Restaurant, 7618 Main Street, Sykesville,


Arts Integration Conference: In addition to keynote speakers and teacher, artist, and community member-led sessions, participants can attend a tour and hands-on arts integration workshop at the Walters Art Museum. Advanced registration required. FREE. 9am-3pm. UMBC, 1000 Hilltop Cir.,

Rainbow Youth Alliance of Baltimore County: A support group for LGBT and questioning teens and their allies. RYA is a safe place to ask questions, find mutual support, and learn information pertinent to their lives. Contact: RYABaltimoreCounty@ FREE. 7:30-9:30pm. Towson Unitarian Universalist Church, 1710 Dulaney Valley Rd. Lutherville,

Wednesday, February 15 BINGO! Come for happy hour, stay for Bingo. Cash prizes and progressive jackpot. Enjoy drink specials, appetizers, and raffles all night. Hosted by Roger Dimick. Proceeds benefit GLCCB. 8:30pm. Club Hippo, 1 W. Eager St. 410.547.0069,

Friday, February 17 Put a Spell on You! A Tribute to Nina Simone: Playwright Rosiland Cauthen presents a night of music, dance, spoken word, and media works honoring the “High Priestess of Soul.” $10-15. 7:30pm. Creative Alliance at the Paterson 3134 Eastern Ave, VOLUME 34, NUMBER 2 • PAGE 17

afterhours BSCENE



PAGE 18 • FEBRUARY 3 – FEBRUARY 16, 2012










Volume 34, Number 2  

In honor of Black History Month, Gay Life examines the African-American LGBT community in Baltimore, a play tackling LGBT domestic violence,...

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