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Serving the gay, lesbian, bisexual, and transgender communities since 1971

Vol. 41 • No. 39 • September 29-October 5, 2011

Warriors hire Welts by Roger Brigham


Rick Gerharter

Jorge Hernandez and Mark Garrett put on their finest for last year’s Castro Street Fair.

Castro fair is Sunday by Seth Hemmelgarn


he annual celebration started by the late gay icon and former Castro Street business owner Harvey Milk in 1974 is set to take place this weekend. The 38th annual Castro Street Fair, with a theme this year of “The Happiest Place in San Francisco,” will run from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m., Sunday, October 2. George Ridgley, the fair’s executive director, said that to him, the fair has “always See page 13 >>

Rick Gerharter

Folsom draws a crowd


oung, hunky men hung out at this year’s Folsom Street Fair, Sunday, September 25, and joined hundreds of thousands of leather and fetish enthusiasts at the South of Market ex-

travaganza. As usual, the throngs of people enjoyed flogging, dancing, and adult beverages – all in the name of fun and raising money for a bevy of nonprofit organizations.

ick Welts made history in May when he became the first major sports executive in America to come out of the closet while president and chief executive officer with the Phoenix Suns. This week he made history by becoming the first openly gay major sports executive to be hired by a major men’s professional sports franchise, when Jane Philomen Cleland he was named the new president and chief Warriors operating officer of the President and Golden State Warriors. COO Rick Welts “I’ve been in basketball about 40 years,” Welts said at the Warriors’ Tuesday morning press conference at its Oakland practice facility announcing his hiring, “but I don’t think any morning I’ve ever woken up more excited than today. It’s an opportunity probably for the first time for me to align my personal and professional lives.” See page 14 >>

Castro serves up new dining scene

Through blog, man T mourns publicly

by Matthew S. Bajko

by Matthew S. Bajko


t began with email updates to close friends and family last November as his husband struggled against anal cancer and complications from being both HIVpositive and having a hepatitis C infection. Following the death of Randy Allgaier, a nationally respected AIDS advocate, Lee Hawn continued to write the electronic letters detailing his mourning process. As he started to plan for Allgaier’s public memorial service in late January, several friends suggested that Hawn publish his often visceral, emotionally searing messages about his coping with the death of his partner of 22 years. Somewhat surprisingly, for the self-described “couch potato” who was the more private individual in their relationship, Hawn decided to go public with his grief. See page 15 >>

he Castro’s dining scene has long been known more for its puns, think Sausage Factory or Orphan Andy’s, than for serving gourmet fare. But that has slowly changed in recent years. Joining well regarded neighborhood stalwarts such as Anchor Oyster Bar on Castro and Chow on Church have been two restaurants that quickly gained loyal followings: Market Street’s Woodhouse Fish Co., with its Tuesday $1 oyster nights, and Frances on 17th Street, where it can take up to three months to secure a table. Newer entrants such as Starbelly and Criolla Kitchen, both at the intersection of 16th and Market streets, have also won praise from local diners and critics. The Michelin Guide named Starbelly one of its “Bib Gourmand” eateries this year, meaning its food inspectors found it a great place to dine for under $40. The opening this summer of Criolla Kitchen, whose southern-style fried chicken and waffles has been a crowd favorite, prompted San Francisco Examiner food critic Patricia Unterman to declare that the Castro’s culinary scene had reached a boiling point. “Friends who live in the Castro are counting their blessings these days. In a neighborhood that once settled for quantity over quality, a new generation of restaurants is turning out San Francisco-worthy food,” Unterman wrote this month.

Rick Gerharter

Laureen Rossi places a pie on display at Chile Pies (Savory and Sweet) on Church Street.

Michael Bauer, a gay man who is the San Francisco Chronicle’s executive food and wine editor and restaurant critic, agrees that the gayborhood’s palate is growing more sophisticated. “I do think the Castro food scene is starting to look up, but it has a ways to go before it becomes


a true foodie destination,” Bauer told the Bay Area Reporter. “For all the density of the area and the demographics, the food scene should be stronger. However, there are some bright spots such as Frances and Starbelly; Woodhouse is also a great neighborhood restaurant and See page 16 >>

2 • BAY AREA REPORTER • September 29-October 5, 2011

<< Community News

▼ Officials discuss hate crimes at HRC meeting in Castro by Tony K. LeTigre


ity officials, state lawmakers, and others discussed antiLGBT violence and related issues at a recent meeting of the San Francisco Human Rights Commission that was held in the Castro. Theresa Sparks, the out transgender head of HRC, was in attendance at the September 22 meeting, along with the commissioners, including Cecilia Chung, who is also transgender and chairs the panel’s LGBT Advisory Committee. San Francisco Police Captain Greg Corrales, who heads Mission Station, which includes the Castro, reported on recent hate crimes in the area. Corrales said Mission Station had two homophobic hate crimes reported in 2010, one so far this year, and two incidents motivated by antitransgender violence during the same period. “Hate crimes against transgender people tend to be especially violent,” Corrales said. State Senator Mark Leno (D-San Francisco) introduced the issue of bullying in public schools, the impetus for his Senate Bill 48, or the Fair, Accurate, Inclusive, and Respectful Education Act, which he sponsored and which Governor Jerry Brown signed into law this summer. “Kids, from a very early age, identify that another child is different,” Leno, who is openly gay, said, and referenced a 2008 incident in Ventura County in which 14-yearold Brandon McInerney allegedly shot and killed Lawrence King, 15, in a classroom at their middle school. “When his teacher asked him afterwards, ‘Why would you do such a thing?’ the boy replied, ‘He was too girly,’” Leno said, referring to McInerney. A long-delayed trial, in which McInerney was charged as an adult, ended in a mistrial earlier this month in Los Angeles. Leno said that adversaries of the FAIR Act, who are currently gathering signatures to repeal it, misunderstand the bill’s aims and are finding the repeal effort difficult because “more moderate conservatives, even some who were involved in the Yes on Prop 8 campaign, consider them far-right extremists.” The FAIR Act requires schools to include lessons acknowledging the contributions of LGBT Americans and persons with disabilities. Openly gay Assemblyman Tom Ammiano (D-San Francisco) said

Jane Philomen Cleland

Assistant District Attorney Victor Hwang addresses the San Francisco Human Rights Commission at its meeting last week in the Castro.

he authored Assembly Bill 9, Seth’s Law, to address bullying in schools, referencing gay California teen Seth Walsh, who committed suicide in 2010 at the age of 13 after years of harassment. “Seth’s Law is joined at the hip with the FAIR Act in regards to bullying,” Ammiano said. AB 9, passed by the Senate in early September, is awaiting action by the governor. Ammiano encouraged the public to lobby the governor’s office in favor of signing the legislation. Out District 8 Supervisor Scott Wiener said sensational hate crimes make a splash in the media every so often, which gives the mistaken impression they are isolated incidents. “I’ve been here 14 years, and hate crimes against LGBT people have never gone away, though they don’t always get reported,” he said. “Some who live in the Castro may feel we’re in a bubble, but the fact is this is an urban neighborhood. We have to take care of ourselves and our own.” Wiener identified LGBT youth as an at-risk population. He commended organizations such as Larkin Street Youth Services, the Lavender Youth Recreation and Information Center, and the LGBT Community Center, but said, “It’s not enough.” In response to a question from Commissioner Sheryl Davis, Wiener also touched on racism in the Castro. “There’s a perception that the LGBT population is a white community, but LGBT is every community,” he said. “I don’t go to the bars as often as I did when I was younger, but from what I do see of the bars today, I perceive more diversity now than 10 years ago.”

But Kyriell Noon, executive director of the Stop AIDS Project, who gave a presentation on “The Evolution of the Black Experience in the Castro,” said the 1970s, though “not perfect,” were more inclusive. “Alameda County has seen a vast influx of blacks who used to live in San Francisco,” Noon added. “African Americans make up only 3.9 percent of the city’s population now.” Commissioner Michael Pappas asked if tourism played a role in hate crimes, in light of the America’s Cup coming to San Francisco in 2013. Wiener said he had no statistics to answer with since “it’s rare that someone gets caught in these kinds of assaults.” Corrales reiterated the difficulty of making generalizations based on the few reported cases, but added, “My impression is that most suspects are not native San Franciscans. People who live in the city generally have an enlightened attitude.” Reporting of hate crimes, or lack thereof, was a recurrent theme. Reasons given for under-reporting included shame, self-blame, failure of either the victim or police officer to identify the incident as hate-motivated, fear of legal repercussions (in the case of illegal immigrants) and/or general distrust of law enforcement, or the feeling that nothing can be done. District Attorney George Gascón said under-reporting leads to difficulty in acquiring funding for organizations like the HRC. “My office tried 24 cases of hate crimes in 2010,” Gascón reported. “I know for a fact there are many more crimes.” See page 17 >>

HIV Story Project returns to Castro compiled by Cynthia Laird


he HIV Story Project, a San Francisco nonprofit, has announced that Generations HIV will return to the Castro October 3-9 at Under One Roof, 518 A Castro Street. Generations HIV is a hands-on videobased storytelling booth in which people can record their thoughts about the impacts and affects of HIV/AIDS. Participants can ask or answer questions about HIV/ AIDS or tell their own HIV stories. The project is in collaboration with the Positive Care Center at UCSF. The HIV Story Project was founded in 2009 and serves as kind of a global digital conversation that is interactive. Generations HIV will be available

during Under One Roof ’s business hours and is open to the public.

NLGJA Fall Honors event The northern California chapter of the National Lesbian and Gay Journalists Association will hold its annual Fall Honors reception and benefit Monday, October 3 from 7 to 9 p.m. at Orson, 508 4th Street in San Francisco. The event, which is open to the public, will feature the 10th annual Excellence in Journalism Awards. This year’s honorees are Michael Krasny, host of KQED’s awardwinning Forum, for his continued support of the LGBT community and his outstanding breadth of journalism work; and online and technology journalist Ina Fried, for her extensive work with NLGJA and her advocacy for LGBT people in the workplace. Additionally,

the online news site Bay Citizen will be recognized for its ongoing support of the LGBT community through its extensive coverage. The evening will also include a presentation of this year’s winner of the $2,500 Bob Ross Student Scholarship to Lauren Jow, editor-inchief of the Daily Bruin at UCLA. The scholarship is funded by the Bob Ross Foundation, named for the founding publisher of the Bay Area Reporter. Tickets are $25 for NLGJA members and $35 for non-members and are available online at or at the door.

Age March this weekend Gays and straights alike are invited to take part in this year’s second annual Age March, which celebrates older residents. The event takes place Saturday, October 1 at Little Marina Green, located next to Crissy Field in San See page 5 >>

Community News>>

September 29-October 5, 2011 • BAY AREA REPORTER • 3

Lesbian and gay SF police officers promoted by Seth Hemmelgarn


even out LGBT San Francisco police officers were recently promoted to sergeant. Their new ranks mean the city’s police force is likely to see more out cops in even higher positions in the coming years. Sergeant Una Bailey, who is a lesbian and president of the San Francisco Police Department’s Pride Alliance for LGBT officers, said the group is “absolutely thrilled” with the promotions, and “We look forward to more of the same happening.” “This is very important to us because it shows the department that we’re very capable and talented,” Bailey said. Bailey said 20 officers overall received promotions. She said that of the seven LGBTs, three are gay men, and four identify as lesbian. She said most, if not all, of the seven are members of the alliance. The news was announced September 15 and the promotions will take effect October 1. The out officers receiving promotions are Melanie Alvarez, Jayme Campbell, Wendy Bear, Anthony Montoya, Maura Pengel, Peter Shields, and Ben Smith. Most didn’t respond to interview requests. Bear, 48, said, “I’m very proud to be a San Francisco police officer, and very, very proud to be promoted.” Bear has been with the SFPD since 1997. She’d previously worked on San Mateo’s police force. “It’s nice to be in the supervisory, leader position,” she said. She’d like to retire as a lieutenant or captain. To her, the number of promotions, “just shows we’re all really great cops,” she said. “It takes a very special person to be a cop,” she said. “It doesn’t matter whether you’re gay, straight, Martian, black, or white.” Asked about the climate for LGBTs on the police force, Bear said there are still people within the department from the “old guard [who] are not necessarily so accepting.” However, she said, “I love this department, I love this job, and to me it’s not even a part of my working experience anymore.” She added, “That’s exactly why I came to this department. ... I can be open and proud, and I just got promoted.” Bear is currently assigned to the Ingleside Station but she said that would change as of October 1, when she expects to be deployed to an investigative unit at another station.

Jane Philomen Cleland

Newly promoted lesbian and gay police sergeants celebrated at a SFPD Pride Alliance get-together last week and include, from left, Wendy Bear, Melanie Alvarez, Jayme Campbell, Maura Pengel, Peter Shields, and Ben Smith.

She estimated her salary would go from $108,000 to around $120,000. The sergeant test, which was last offered in 2009, is administered every three years. The current list of candidates was adopted in January 2010. Promotions are offered as positions become available, and when the chief is ready to fill those positions. For every position that’s open, a total of five candidates is considered. Sexual orientation is not among the selection criteria. Bailey said the addition of out male sergeants is “vitally important” because there aren’t any out men above that rank. “The more people we have as sergeant, the greater chance they have of taking the lieutenant test,” she said, adding that the next test for that position would be in November. Those who just became sergeants won’t be eligible to take that test. The next one won’t be given until 2015, she said. Bailey said the captain is typically the head of the station. Next is the lieutenant, who manages officers and sergeants at the station and manages critical incidents, among other duties. Longtime out gay Officer Lenny Broberg was offered a promotion, but he turned it down. Among other reasons, Broberg, who serves on the gang unit, said, “I like what I’m doing.” Becoming a sergeant would have meant transferring to a station and changing his schedule, and he wouldn’t have as much time for community activities such as

softball and fundraisers, the wellknown leatherman said. Three lesbians are currently the highest ranking out police in the department. Chief Greg Suhr’s command staff includes Assistant Chief Denise Schmitt, office of administration; Lea Militello, who heads the SFPD’s Municipal Transportation Agency operations; and Sandra Tong, of the airport bureau.▼

On the web Online content this week includes the Out in the World column and an article on the Census Bureau’s latest estimates of same-sex households.

<< Open Forum

4 • BAY AREA REPORTER • September 29-October 5, 2011

Volume 41, Number 39 September 29-October 5, 2011 PUBLISHER Thomas E. Horn Bob Ross (Founder, 1971 – 2003) NEWS EDITOR Cynthia Laird ARTS EDITOR Roberto Friedman ASSISTANT EDITORS Matthew S. Bajko Seth Hemmelgarn Jim Provenzano CONTRIBUTING WRITERS Dan Aiello • Tavo Amador • Erin Blackwell Roger Brigham • Scott Brogan Victoria A. Brownworth • Philip Campbell Heather Cassell • Chuck Colbert Richard Dodds • David Duran Raymond Flournoy • David Guarino Liz Highleyman • Brandon Judell John F. Karr • Lisa Keen • Matthew Kennedy David Lamble • Tony K. LeTigre Michael McDonagh • Paul Parish Lois Pearlman • Tim Pfaff • Jim Piechota Bob Roehr • Donna Sachet • Adam Sandel Jason Serinus • Gregg Shapiro Gwendolyn Smith • Ed Walsh • Sura Wood

ART DIRECTION Kurt Thomas PRODUCTION MANAGER T. Scott King PHOTOGRAPHERS Jane Philomen Cleland Marc Geller Rick Gerharter Lydia Gonzales Rudy K. Lawidjaja Steven Underhill Bill Wilson ILLUSTRATORS & CARTOONISTS Paul Berge Christine Smith GENERAL MANAGER Michael M. Yamashita

The Warriors’ Golden move I

n the sports world, front-office maneuverings aren’t often discussed around the water cooler as much as an athlete’s performance the night before. But that changed this week when the Golden State Warriors hired openly gay basketball executive Rick Welts as the team’s president and chief operating officer. Readers may recall that Welts came out publicly in May on the front page of the New York Times, when he held a similar position with the Phoenix Suns. He left that job a couple weeks ago and told reporters Tuesday that he hadn’t planned to return to the sport he loves until he received a call from Warriors managing partners Joe Lacob and Peter Guber. The rest, as they say, is history. It seems like a great fit for Welts, 58, who has about 40 years of experience in pro basketball – from being a ball boy with the Seattle SuperSonics to working for the league and building the NBA brand around the nowpopular All-Star Weekend to his executive positions with the Suns and now the Warriors. Welts was introduced to the Bay Area media at a press conference Tuesday and, from a review of the coverage, he made a good first impression. The hiring also reflects well on Lacob and Guber, who bought into the team last year and are rebuilding the organization. The Warriors haven’t been to the playoffs in several years, and fans are clamoring for improved performance. Welts has the management experience to make that happen. “Whether he’s straight or gay is irrelevant,” Lacob said. “I wanted the best person. All I care about is winning, and he is simply the single best executive we could have hired for this job.” Welts also seems to be comfortable with himself since his coming out story was reported. He took the job, he said, because it would allow for him to “align my personal and professional lives.” His partner, Todd Gage, lives in the Sacramento area, he said, and he wanted to move closer to him. There are several things Welts can do to help professional sports, particularly basketball, break down barriers regarding gay issues. Whether it be players tweeting homophobic

by Ariana Bostian-Kentes



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slurs or athletes making anti-gay taunts on the field, such incidents are all too common in today’s hyper media environment. Athletes, many of whom earn several million dollars a season, seem to believe they are entitled to bash gays. The whole culture of professional sports is ripe for an intervention, and Welts can certainly do his part for the NBA. Having an openly gay man at the top of an organization is the most visible aspect. But at the press conference, Welts said that he didn’t think he needed to specifically address his sexuality with the team. “I don’t think there’s much mystery about it,” he said. “The front page of the New York Times is a pretty good place to publicize it.” We would urge him to reconsider that stance. At the same time, he also said that he believes a culture of silence permeates sports. What better way to break that silence than to talk with the team? Some players (and coaches and other personnel) may have questions or may just want to ask Welts what it’s like to be out

in pro basketball. He said that by his being out he hoped to “elevate the quantity and quality of discussion.” That would seem to indicate that a conversation with the team is warranted. He also didn’t say anything about adopting a zero tolerance policy for homophobic slurs in practices and in the locker room – areas that are often away from the glare of the media and the places that such comments are most often made without thought. That, too, is an area that Welts should address. Just this week, the National Hockey League declined to intervene when Philadelphia Flyers player Wayne Simmonds was apparently captured on video calling New York Rangers player and marriage equality advocate Sean Avery a “fucking faggot” during a preseason game. The NHL decided not to get involved because there was no audio, according to a petition started by the Courage Campaign that urges the league to reverse its decision. Such resistance on the part of league officials to take action when something like this happens is all the more reason Welts can set a powerful example in the NBA. We’ll be watching.▼

What does DADT repeal mean to me?

DISPLAY ADVERTISING Colleen Small Scott Wazlowski


hat is a much more difficult question to answer than most people may realize. I have been with my partner Nicole, an activeduty Army officer currently on deployment, for nearly five years. When I sit down and think about it, the first few items that come to mind when I think about what repeal means are the most obvious and arguably the most trivial: I can post pictures of us together on Facebook, hold her hand when walking down the street, tell her I love her on the phone and actually hear it back, attend important events on post (promotion ceremonies, deployment, and homecoming ceremonies) without having to fear someone will suspect who I am and out Nicole. But when I dig deeper I think of what it means for me in relation to my role as a military partner: I can be part of a family readiness group when my partner gets deployed, I can reach out to other military families and find support through our shared common experience of being in a relationship with someone in the military, I can volunteer on post – putting together care packages with the other partners and really feeling like I’m part of the military community. I can be the proudest date at the Military Ball, and I can rest assured that while the person I love is on deployment she isn’t worrying about having to hide and lie in order to save her career – she can worry about important things like doing her job well and staying out of harm’s way. Looking back on what the “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” policy has put us through is kind of like a bad dream. I remember bits and pieces of events that happened, things that were said and situations that caused us to panic, but mostly I remember the feelings associated with those experiences. I remember the first time I became hyper-conscious of the way I looked at Nicole. We were at a party and I found myself gazing at her dove-eyed from across the room. I had to tell myself to snap out of it and not be so obvious about my feelings for her; people can tell when

someone is in love, which was a bad thing for us. I remember the first, second, and third time she got mad at me for flirting with her on her Facebook page. I remember being at a bar with Nicole and her ROTC friends and hearing every other word be “fag” – and having to bite my tongue and let it go; never in my life had I not stood up for what I believe in and this time I had to sit down and keep my mouth shut so as not to raise suspicion. I remember having a panic attack when someone posted a picture online of the two of us dancing together at a Halloween party, in the privacy of a friend’s living room, and having one of my closest friends tell me, “Well maybe you two shouldn’t be dancing together in public.” And I will never forget one of the worst times in both of our lives, when Nicole was investigated with one semester left before graduating and commissioning. Disenrollment papers were started because someone was jealous of her success and tipped off the colonel about the possibility that Nicole was a lesbian. She came home and cried on my shoulder every single night for two weeks. We had no idea what would happen – if she was going to be kicked out of her program and have to pay back tens of thousands of dollars in college loans with no degree and no job prospects, or if they were going to let her stay in and commission. After all, she was one of the most highly-ranked cadets in the country and boy, did she make her school’s program look good. I don’t think I have ever felt so completely lost and helpless. There was nothing I could do or say that would help to calm her fears. We were absolutely terrified and powerless. Her (and our) future was going to be determined for us at the whim of one man who could either decide to end a career and a promising future or allow someone who volunteered to serve her country, actually serve. In the end, Nicole was able to stay in and commission. As long as she watched

herself and didn’t get too fancy. Now that I’ve met so many amazing people along my journey as an advocate, I know that we were lucky. Others’ careers and lives were ruined; their children taught to lie at school, partners forced to speak in code over the phone and send pictures of people other than them in care packages so as not to raise any questions. Americans who dedicated their lives to serving our country were discharged, disgraced, and disowned, and sometimes in a moment of despair, took their own lives. Female service members, one that I know personally, were raped and forced to hide it because if they told, they would be outed. It is important to remember what we as gay, lesbian, and bisexual people in the military community have been through, but it’s also important to be able to look ahead of us and move forward with purpose. In this moment, repeal of DADT also means to me that the partners and families of LGB service members can now seek out one another without fear of threatening our partners’ careers. We can step out of the shadows and be recognized for the selfless service to our country that is the hallmark of every military family. I can proudly display Nicole’s picture on my desk at work and proudly claim her as my soldier. And together, we can continue to support one another and to support those like us, hoping that never again will anyone have to go through what we went through and paving the way to build a better, safer and more equal future inclusive of everyone who wants to serve.▼ Ariana Bostian-Kentes is the president of the Military Partners and Families Coalition, a nonprofit organization founded in 2011 that provides support, resources, education, and advocacy for lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender military partners and their families.

Letters >>

September 29-October 5, 2011 • BAY AREA REPORTER • 5

What’s it take to elect a gay mayor?

Wiener’s attempt to sabotage rent control

I have read with great dismay that neither LGBT Democratic club could see fit to endorse the only gay candidate for mayor, Bevan Dufty [“Dufty loses Alice endorsement fight,” Political Notebook, September 15]. Both Harvey Milk and Alice B. Toklas must be turning over in their graves. Yes, we live in a fabulous city with a number of straight allies in government that our LGBT votes have helped to elect. However, when it comes to electing an openly gay mayor, something more conservative cities around the country have already done, our straight allies disappear. As a progressive voter, I support Dufty because he is one of the few candidates that cares about how the city functions as well as knows how to make things work. We all can see how the city has suffered with career politicians who were only interested in the mayor’s job as a stepping stone and ignored the problems we face. Dufty is a doer. I approached him when he was supervisor for support for the Federation of Gay Games and he immediately opened his Rolodex and started calling folks on our behalf. Very few politicians are willing to do that. Two years ago when I was working against the JROTC ballot initiative, Dufty was one of the first supervisors to respond, recognizing this was San Francisco’s own “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” moment. During his time in office, Dufty created coalitions with African American, Latino, and Asian and Pacific Islander groups and leaders and the LGBT community. Many people have learned that he can be called upon and trusted to bring our city together to find the best solution to issues that confront us. Given the large number of candidates, if the LGBT community is united in its support of Dufty, and we give him our first or second vote, San Francisco will celebrate the election of its first openly gay mayor in November.

Conservative Supervisor Scott Wiener has won permission from the other supes to place on the November ballot Proposition E, which would enable the supervisors and mayor to modify or rescind any future voterapproved legislation – such as the rent control ordinances and any part thereof, limits on owner move-in evictions, relocation assistance for no-fault tenant removal, as well as every other voter-approved ballot measure that might be approved by the voters in San Francisco. Originally Wiener wanted the proposition to affect all such ordinances, including those voted in the past. But under pressure he has modified the language of the proposition so it would affect future ballot measures. If this measure passes, it will only open the door to an eventual vulnerability for all former ballot initiatives as well. It’s a real Trojan horse – once in the gates, the damage begins. Wiener’s initiative basically does not show respect or trust in the voters. His excuse for Prop E is that we, the poor misguided public, may be confused by too many complex ballot measures. Such thinking insults the many voters who do make the effort to understand ballot measures. He seems to think that the Board of Supervisors in its great wisdom should have the power to overturn the will of the people. But if a voter does not care to read a ballot measure, the remedy is simple: Do not vote on that particular measure. Those voters who do care will cast the deciding votes. It should not be up to the supes to overturn the will of San Francisco voters, or to amend voter-approved propositions. Many of the initiatives approved in the city’s history were approved by over 200,000 votes. Even individual mayors have not received such high numbers of votes in SF. But these ballot measures do. If Prop E passes, we will have allowed the Board of Supervisors to overrule tens of thousands of voters. If approved, Prop E will make progressive reforms open to attack by a Board of Supervisors that grows progressively more conservative and more in the hands of corporate and big money interests. I urge voters to vote no on Proposition E.

Alan Lessik San Francisco

Same old F or M I love Gwen Smith’s Transmissions column – and thank you for keeping it a staple in your paper. However, I wanted to correct/clarify something she said in her latest column, “Bureaucratic Identity” [September 22]. As a trans person myself, I would love it if governments gave us another option on documents in addition to M and F, but according to the Associated Press article I read, Australia is only permitting the X option on passports for physically intersexed people, not garden variety, run-of-themill transgenders. Those folks need to choose between the same old F and M. But we can hope, right? Mal Schoen Menlo Park, California

About that flag On November 7, 1997 I was one of many people who carried the rainbow flag down Castro Street from 16th Street to its current place of honor on Market Street. I am not ignorant of its history, but as Gilbert Baker admits [Mailstrom, September 15], it has not remained unchanged. On September 11, I co-organized the ceremony at Harvey Milk Plaza honoring Mark Bingham and Father Mychal Judge. As I set up the memorial that was placed at the foot of the flagpole, I was once again reminded of its power as various tour guides brought their tours by and explained the history and meaning of the rainbow flag. I think it added to the power of the flag to be able to say, “And today it is being lowered in honor of Mark Bingham and Father Mychal Judge, both gay men who performed heroic acts during the 9/11 attacks.” The scenario of the Irish flag replacing the rainbow flag described by Jeff Sheehy [Mailstrom, September 22] is much more likely to happen under the current management of the flag by a merchant association with no accountability to anyone but themselves, then if community activists have a process that allows the flag to be used to educate people on issues that are happening today, not just to remind them of the Castro’s heyday of activism.

Richard Reidy San Francisco

Saddened at Evans’s passing I was very saddened to hear of Arthur Evans’s death [“Gay pioneer Arthur Evans dies,” September 15]. I knew he had health problems but I had hoped he would live longer. I worked with him on quality of life issues, including the sit-lie law. He was the epitome of a nonconformist and always expressed himself, no matter the consequences. Nevertheless, I thought it very low for both Tommi Avicolli Mecca and Joey Cain to bash Arthur one last time over not wanting to have homeless take over the sidewalks. I did not agree with Arthur on everything, but then I don’t agree with anybody on everything. I enjoyed Evans’s background as a radical faerie and as a neighborhood activist. He was a positive force and was gracious, even when the Harvey Milk LGBT Democratic Club dismissed him, because he was not as extreme as them. Harvey Milk was originally a Republican and is probably turning in his grave. The biggest lesson that Evans’s death gave the city’s LGBT and progressive movements is that they are incredibly intolerant and extremely self righteous – just like the homophobes and ultra conservatives they complain about. Denise Jameson San Francisco

Nudists’ syndrome Nudists in the Castro have a syndrome that is typical of many San Franciscans. I call it Entitlement Syndrome. It is characterized by the individual feeling he has the right to do anything he wants (be naked), anywhere he wants and anytime he wants. Trying to reason with these people and other extremists is impossible. You can’t be rational with children or with entitled adults.

Bill Wilson San Francisco


News Briefs

From page 2

Francisco. Registration starts at 10 a.m., followed by the march at 11. There is no fee. Author and gay activist Barbara Rose Brooker started the Age March last year. A 75-year-old native San Franciscan, Booker decided to hold the event as a way to celebrate aging as a positive experience and to break down the myths, stereotypes, and social pressures causing age discrimination. The march is growing this year, with events planned for Washington, D.C. and New York. For more information, visit www.

Calabash benefit Sunday Calabash, a celebration of gourds, art, and the garden will take place Sunday, October 2 from 1 to 5 p.m. on the grounds of Food for Thought, 6550 Railroad Avenue in Forestville. The event is a benefit for Food for Thought and the Sonoma County AIDS Food Bank. Tickets are $45 in advance ( or $50 at the door. This year’s event is being cosponsored by the Occidental Arts and Ecology Center.

HIV at midlife seminar The Positive Care Center at UCSF, Openhouse, and the AIDS Legal Referral Panel are hosting “Thriving with HIV at Midlife and Beyond”

Randy Williams San Francisco

on Wednesday, October 5 at the Eureka Valley Recreation Center, 100 Collingwood Street in the Castro. The program takes place from 7 to 8 p.m., followed by a reception with information tables from various organizations. Attendees will learn about living well with HIV, and what they should expect in terms of housing, financial planning, insurance, and other practical concerns. Presenters include Dr. Malcolm John of UCSF, Michelle Alcedo of Openhouse, and Amy Orgain and Sara Paul Malan of ALRP. Additionally, filmmaker Marc Smolowitz will show several very short films from the HIV Story Project.▼

<< Politics

▼ Castro plazas bring challenges along with seating 6 • BAY AREA REPORTER • September 29-October 5, 2011

by Matthew S. Bajko


everal times a week Castro resident Michael Koehn joins friends at Jane Warner Plaza in the heart of the city’s LGBT district to relax outdoors and catch up on the latest gossip buzzing through the gayborhood. “I prefer to come here than to go to Dolores Park. It has changed my life,” said Koehn, a 23-year resident of the area, who was seated at a table in the public parklet Tuesday afternoon. “It is a great place to meet up with friends and a great place to hear the latest news.” His friend Rick Bowerman agreed, adding he would like to see additional outdoor seating areas built along Market Street, particularly near where it crosses Church Street. “Going to the park I see as more of an event. You can come here and this can be just 10 or 15 minutes to stop and see friends and neighbors,” said Bowerman, who had joined Koehn and two other friends at the parklet. Ever since the city closed a portion of 17th Street at the intersection of Market and Castro Streets to vehicle traffic in 2009, the parklet has won rave reviews for providing a central gathering spot to sit, relax, eat, and people watch. “The intersection was really dangerous. It is much nicer like this; we need more of these spaces,” said a man, who gave his name as Corey Hart, while seated in the plaza as he waited for the 24-Divisadero bus to arrive. Over the two years it has been open, the plaza has turned into the Castro’s de facto living room. But, as with any household, there can be problems at times.

The claiming of the plaza by a group of local nudists, many of whom are straight men, has not only raised eyebrows but also sparked international headlines. Gay District 8 Supervisor Scott Wiener has been the butt of countless jokes for pushing an ordinance that would require nudists to place a napkin down when they sit outside and put on clothes inside restaurants. Overheated coverage of the issue by the mainstream media has, in turn, been a boon in drawing tourists to the neighborhood. It is now a common sight to see out-of-towners having their picture taken with the naked men, who staged a Nude-In this past Saturday to protest Wiener’s proposed rules. “Personally they don’t bother me,” said Steve Adams, president of the Merchants of Upper Market and Castro. The creation of the plaza has had a positive impact, said Adams, in drawing people to the business district. And many of them, he added, end up shopping there. “There are always people out there. That’s what I think is great. It is being used and people like that,” he said. Across the street efforts to activate Harvey Milk Plaza with the installation of benches has not been quite as embraced. Nearby condo owners have complained to officials with the Castro Community Benefits District, which paid for and oversaw the installation of the purple-painted seating, that they have been magnets for homeless people and want them removed. Some community groups and homeless activists, in turn, have countered that the benches provide a place to hang out for LGBT youth

Jane Philomen Cleland

A nudist who gave his name only as J posed with tourists during a Nude-In Saturday, September 24 at Jane Warner Plaza in the Castro.

not of age to enter the Castro’s bars. Rather than have police deployed to deal with complaints, they have instead called for more social service outreach workers to be assigned to the area. “Homeless folks have a right to sit in a public space. What Milk Plaza and the Castro in general needs is more intervention from the [homeless outreach] team and other service groups to outreach folks who need services,” queer housing rights activist Tommi Avicolli Mecca wrote in an email last month to Wiener. The CBD rejected pleas to have the benches removed, and instead, has worked with San Francisco police and patrol specials to better monitor the area. It launched a 30-day trial period September 16 to increase security there in the morning hours starting some days as early as 5 a.m. “Over the last three weeks there has been real improvement in that area,” said CBD Executive Director Andrea Aiello. “The patrol specials and police department have been working really well together and really trying to figure out what to do

to help the youth that are out there.” Two women who were pregnant and hanging out at the plaza have since moved into shelters, said Aiello. And two men received bus tickets back to Alaska through a city-funded program, said patrol special John Fitzinger. Fitzinger said anyone caught drinking or urinating at the plaza will be cited, and anyone with a sleeping bag will be told to move along as they cannot camp or sleep there. “It is not a campaign of harassment but a campaign of education,” said Fitzinger during a recent CBD committee meeting.

The flag Another flashpoint at Milk Plaza has been MUMC’s control over the rainbow flag and its reluctance to lower it during political demonstrations or to memorialize the dead. Creators of the flagpole insist it is meant as an art installation and the flag should not be flown at half-mast. Others want to see the city reclaim oversight of the flagpole, whose

insurance and upkeep is paid for by MUMC, so the public has a greater say in how it is used. With more people utilizing that corner of the Castro, and scenes from the movie Milk showing how it was used to rally the LGBT community during the 1970s, the space has taken on greater importance, said local blogger Michael Petrelis. “It has to do with the global significance of Harvey Milk Plaza,” said Petrelis, who has raised a stink about MUMC’s control of the flag since late January. “The movie Milk and the scenes of Sean Penn getting an old-fashioned wooden soap box, standing on it with his bullhorn, and rallying the community from that location has helped make Milk plaza a global symbol of freedom, liberty, and equality.” The lowering of the flag can also attract people into the Castro, argued Petrelis, as was witnessed when more than 100 people came out for a 9/11 memorial. “We are helping bring vibrancy to the plaza,” he said. So far MUMC has not budged on changing its policy of having its board evaluate requests to lower the flag on a case-by-case basis. The CBD has also remained neutral on the issue. It is focused on how to improve the two plazas with more artwork, planters, and additional seating. A mural on the brick wall below the Diesel store is also being discussed for Harvey Milk Plaza, as is having musicians perform in the alcoves with the benches. “I would like us to collaborate with other entities to have more outdoor entertainment at either place,” said Aiello.▼ Got a tip on LGBT politics? Call Matthew S. Bajko at (415) 861-5019 or e-mail

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September 29-October 5, 2011 • BAY AREA REPORTER • 7

<< Travel

8 • BAY AREA REPORTER • September 29-October 5, 2011

Ed Walsh

Rides await visitors across the lagoon at Disney’s California Adventure.

Count on LA for big gay fun by Ed Walsh


alf of the people here are homosexual,” said the narrator on the TMZ Hollywood Tour bus video, adding, “the rest are just gay.” In a recent study, the Williams Institute at the UCLA Law School found that West Hollywood is indeed one of the gayest cities in the country. It came in sixth, just behind Guerneville, as having the highest percentage of same-sex couples. But if the census counted single gay men, WeHo would undoubtedly rank higher. For those of us from northern California, just about everyplace within an hour’s drive of Los Angeles International Airport is simply “LA.” And like West Hollywood, gay-friendliness is the rule, not the exception in LA. A couple of big gay events are coming up in Los Angeles, if you can travel soon. Gay Days Anaheim (unofficially known as Gay Days at Disneyland), kicks off today (Thursday, September 29),

with a Cirque de Soleil show at the Kodak Theater in Hollywood. Gay Days features jam-packed activities through Sunday, October 2. Some events are focused on families, some for women and some geared toward gay men. San Francisco’s own Carol Channing holds court on Sunday with an event at the Disney Grand Californian Hotel entitled, “An Intimate Conversation with Carol Channing,” in which the 90-yearold performer discusses her life in the limelight. (More information But southern California’s big gay day will be in West Hollywood on Halloween. The gay high holiday falls on a Monday this year, meaning that the weekend leading up to it will be a de facto dress rehearsal for the town’s big night. Hundreds of thousands, some in full drag, will converge on Santa Monica Boulevard, WeHo’s main drag. If you miss Halloween in the Castro, WeHo Halloween is the next best thing. But if you plan to go, make your hotel reservation soon.

Travel >>

September 29-October 5, 2011 • BAY AREA REPORTER • 9

Los Angeles’ latest major attraction, LA Live, was completed last year. LA Live is a huge entertainment complex next to Staples Center in downtown Los Angeles with nightclubs, restaurants, the Nokia Theater, and the Grammy Museum. You don’t have to go far to get away from the concrete jungle. LA’s gay beach is about a 25-minute drive from WeHo. It is a section of Will Rogers State Beach opposite Entrada Drive and West Channel Road. If you are driving, take Sunset Boulevard west to the Pacific Coast Highway. Make a left on PCH and then turn left onto either Entrada Drive or West Channel Road. There is usually free street parking available. There are a couple of pay parking lots nearby, including a public parking lot at the beach. It is about 45 minutes if you take the bus. You can take the #4 or #704 bus to Broadway and 4th streets in Santa Monica, then transfer to #9 bus to Entrada and PCH.


Ed Walsh

A waiter at Mr. Black’s gay nightclub shows off the standard bare back aprons.

The sights Despite the stereotype about no one walking in LA, West Hollywood is one of the most walkable cities in the country. WeHo’s biggest landmark, the Pacific Design Center, has almost completed an expansion with a third building. The newest building is clad in red-colored glass. That adds to the existing blue and green buildings on the campus that covers 14 acres. West Hollywood will be collectively bursting with civic pride this weekend. The city’s stateof-the-art public library opens on Saturday, October 1. It’s in a brandnew building across from the Pacific Design Center, a few steps from the old library, which will be replaced by a park. City officials promise the new library will be the centerpiece of the West Hollywood community. It will feature an expanded HIV/ AIDS information center and the library promises to expand its current selection of 4,050 of gay and lesbian books. A guided tour is one of the best ways to see the overall highlights of LA without getting lost. The aforementioned TMZ tour is one of the newest tours. Like the TV show and website, the tour takes a wonderfully irreverent and cynical look at Hollywood, warts and all. You will see a lot of the same stuff you see on any tour but it is interspersed with video clips of the stars’ greatest foibles. You will see the natural habitat of the Hollywood elite where they do a daily dance with the paparazzi. Often they go out of their way to be noticed by pretending they are trying not to be noticed. The TMZ tour is done in partnership with Starline Tours, which offers more standard tours as well as other offbeat tours, including a Crime Scene Tour that includes Hollywood’s true horror stories. If you haven’t been to LA in a while, be sure to check out some of the city’s newer attractions, including a brand new one-acre addition to the Los Angeles County Museum of Art. The Lynda and Stewart Resnick Exhibit Pavilion opened last year with 45,000 square feet. The space bills itself as the world’s largest naturally-lit open plan museum space in the world. The LA County Museum of Art is in the middle of museum row; the world-famous La Brea Tar Pits are

right next to it. The George C. Page Museum, next to the pits, showcases exhibits that explain how nowextinct animals got trapped in the gooey tar. The three other museums that make up Museum Row are the Peterson Automotive Museum, the Architecture and Design Museum, and the Craft and Folk Art Museum. LA’s best-known museum is the Getty Center. It is in the Brentwood section of LA on the top of a hillside with sweeping views of the city and ocean. Admission to the museum is free but parking costs $15. Public transit directions can be found on the museum’s website, www. The Getty’s not so-wellknown sister museum is the Getty Villa in Malibu. It is dedicated to the arts and culture of ancient Greece, Rome, and Etruria. The Hollywood and Highland complex celebrates its 10th anniversary in November. The stunning mega-mall includes 75 shops and the world-famous Kodak Theater, home of the Oscars. The theater is next to the historic Grauman’s Chinese Theater. The Hollywood and Highland complex is playing a big part in the slow but continuing revitalization of Hollywood. The Grove at Farmers Market, in the Fairfax District, opened about a year after Hollywood and Highland and is another very popular addition to the city. The collection of shops and entertainment venues is set in a pedestrian mall that looks something like Disneyland’s main street. Like West Hollywood, the Fairfax District is also very walkable. Speaking of Disneyland, the Magic Kingdom and the newer next-door California Adventure park, are continually changing and updating. Disneyland is gearing up for its Halloween and Christmasthemed motifs. California Adventure is expanding with a carthemed section that is scheduled to open next summer and a 1920s-style main street also scheduled to open next year. If you get homesick, California Adventure features a row of San Francisco Victorians, a humorous Boudin’s Bakery tour hosted via video by Rosie O’Donnell and Colin Mochrie, and the Golden Gate Bridge stars in the opening of the Soaring over California ride, an attraction that makes you feel like you have taken flight over California.

The biggest concentration of gay nightlife in the LA area is in West Hollywood and the Silver Lake neighborhood of Los Angeles, a short drive east of WeHo. Silver Lake was gay before West Hollywood took center stage. The Le Barcito bar (formerly the Black Cat) is designated by the city of Los Angeles as a Historic Cultural Monument. That’s because of groundbreaking pre-Stonewall progay demonstrations that were held there. Among the most popular gay mainstays in Silver Lake are MJ’s and Akbar. The gay bars in West Hollywood are clustered around Santa Monica Boulevard. Among the more popular are the Abbey, Rage, Mickey’s, the Mother Lode, Trunks, Eleven, Here Lounge, Fiesta Cantina, and East West Lounge. The Palms in WeHo is the oldest lesbian bar in the LA Area. The Abbey has a women’s night on Wednesdays. The Here Lounge has women’s nights on both Thursday and Friday. The Factory and the adjacent Ultra Suede nightclubs are gay WeHo’s biggest dance venues. Both clubs are generally open on weekends only. Jewel’s Catch One opened in 1972 and boasts that it was the nation’s first black gay and lesbian disco. It is in midtown LA in the Pico/ Arlington area.

Accommodations Like just about everywhere, supply and demand govern hotel prices in LA. January and February are usually slow times of year, so you will often find lower hotel rates and fewer fellow tourists then. One of the newest hotels in LA is the upscale SLS at Beverly Hills. It is owned by SBE, the same company that owns the Abbey. It’s centrally located near both the Grove, the Beverly Center shopping center, and West Hollywood. The hotel provides guests with a free shuttle service to and from the Abbey. The property is a designer queen’s delight with the “floating beds” in the middle of the room that have become so popular lately. The Redbury Hotel is also one of the newest hotels in LA. It is in the heart of Hollywood at the famous intersection of Hollywood and Vine. It is next door to the nightclub space that hosts the fabulous Mr. Black’s on Tuesday nights. Many of the rooms in this beautifully designed hotel have balconies and kitchenettes. If the design isn’t enough to peak your gay sensibilities, the stars of both Judy Garland and Cesar Romero are on the sidewalk in front of the hotel. The San Vicente Inn is the See page 17 >>

10 • BAY AREA REPORTER • September 29-October 5, 2011

Serving the LGBT communities since 1971

Read more online at

September 29-October 5, 2011 • BAY AREA REPORTER • 11

12 • BAY AREA REPORTER • September 29-October 5, 2011

Serving the LGBT communities since 1971

Community News >>

September 29-October 5, 2011 • BAY AREA REPORTER • 13

Castro Theatre seeks fix for trucks’ hits

Get a new lease on renters insurance.

by Seth Hemmelgarn

Just pennies a day.


taff at San Francisco’s historic Castro Theatre are trying to figure out how to save the historic marquee after years of delivery trucks hitting it. They warn that the overhanging structure could eventually collapse. The theater may ask the city for help. One idea would be to build a parklet in front of the theater, which is at 429 Castro Street, to keep vehicles from getting too close. But it’s unclear how much government agencies would be willing to help, since private businesses typically pay for such build-outs. Bill Longen, the theater’s technical director and community liaison, said it’s “imperative” that the city understand the marquee “is not going to withstand a lot more damage, and could be a physical threat” to anyone near it if it’s hit and “comes crashing down, which it could very well do.” He said trucks have hit the marquee three times in the last four months. The front of the marquee is even with the curb, and trucks get too close and end up smashing into the marquee. Another problem is that the street in front of the theater is bowed, so the vehicles sometimes lean sideways into the structure. Longen said the trucking companies’ insurance has covered


Castro fair

From page 1

represented the end of summer and the end of the street fair season, and it always has felt joyful to me,” when asked about the theme. “It really does feel like a celebration, not just for the Castro, but for the whole city,” he said. Among the entertainment will be Joshua Klipp and Freeplay Dance Crew, Chloe Sevigny impersonator Drew Droege, and the band Beard Summit. Barnaby’s World of Wonderment will also be on hand to offer interactive fun. The suggested donation for entry to the fair is $5. One addition to this year’s event will be food trucks. Ridgely said Curry Up and Hapa SF will both be participating. He said fair officials approached the mobile eateries “based on the amount of interest there’s been in the food truck craze in the last couple years.” He added, “We have a lot of long-term food vendors we’ve been working with, and we certainly don’t want to alienate them,” but “we just want to see what the response will be like.” Ridgely said the rules on alcohol wouldn’t change this year. Beer booths will be available and this year, Stoli is a sponsor, so fairgoers can enjoy vodka, too. Proceeds from the event go to help charities. Fair officials expect all of the gate donations will go to more than 30 local nonprofits. Ridgely said for the past few years the amount distributed to beneficiaries has been around $75,000, and “I don’t see any reason why it would be different this year.” The fair’s operating budget is approximately $250,000. Teddy Witherington, executive director of San Francisco Gay Men’s Chorus, which has been a fair partner for several years, said his organization sees participating in events like the Castro Street Fair as a way to serve the community. Volunteers from the chorus help collect gate donations, among other tasks. “It’s truly a symbiotic relationship,

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Rick Gerharter

The Castro Theatre marquee has sustained damage from delivery trucks that have hit the iconic structure.

repairs, but the theater still ends up paying for some of it. In the most recent incident, which occurred September 14, neon bulbs were broken and sheet metal at the bottom of the marquee was “bent and pulled out of shape.” Damage to the structure from the most recent truck accident could cost almost $10,000 to fix, according to Longen. The theater’s tried to fix the problem. Among other things, staff have moved motorcycle parking to the north side of the building. But that quit working after about six

months when the trucks started parking in the motorcycle zone. There’s been talk of extending the pavement out about two feet in front of the marquee to prevent trucks from hitting it, Longen said. “A parklet would be the best solution to the whole problem,” he said. The mini parks typically are built out from sidewalks and hold tables and chairs. Previous ideas, which have included extending the pavement in front of the theater, have been nixed.

because we have volunteers, they love participating in these events, and in return we receive funds to help us with our mission of serving the community,” he said. Witherington said that for each of the past couple of years, the chorus has received about $3,400 from the fair. Fairgoers shouldn’t expect any major changes to this year’s festival. “The merchants and the residents in the neighborhood seem to be very happy with the event, which is why we like to keep the status quo with a lot of the infrastructure, and the footprint,” Ridgely said. “People know what to expect, and it’s still a lot of fun.”

the door, we’ll come out to the street to bless them,” Floyd said.▼

Animal blessings People attending the fair will also have a chance to have their pets blessed this year at Metropolitan Community Church-San Francisco, 150 Eureka Street. The service begins at 3 p.m. The Reverend Victor Floyd, associate pastor, said the church would offer the blessings in an early observance of St. Francis of Assisi Day, which is October 4, and to coincide with the fair. Floyd said St. Francis is the patron saint of animals. “He would preach to animals, especially to birds,” he said. The ceremony will include, “a little music, minimal speaking, and then pets and their people can come up and receive a paws-on blessing from the pastors,” Floyd said. Pets should be leashed or caged “or whatever makes [them] sociable in a crowd of animals,” he said. Floyd, whose own standard schnauzer, Dervish, will serve as a greeter, doesn’t anticipate rowdy crowds. “I’m always amazed at how the animals are well-behaved,” he said. “... They always calm down when they sense the people are calm.” For pets who are sick or deceased, people are welcome to bring toys, photos, or ashes, Floyd said. The blessings are free. Canine and feline treats will be provided, along with water. All species are welcome. “Even if they won’t fit through

See page 16 >>

For more information about the fair, visit www.castrostreetfair. org. Those interested in the animal blessings can contact Floyd at

<<The Sports Page

14 • BAY AREA REPORTER • September 29-October 5, 2011

Charting the future by Roger Brigham


idway through its scheduled one-year negotiations with the Gay and Lesbian International Sports Association for an end to the World Outgames and a co-produced Gay Games in 2018, the Federation of Gay Games held two teleconference calls with stakeholders last weekend to discuss their concerns and

progress of the talks. The one quadrennial event topic is scheduled to be covered in the final day of the FGG’s annual meeting next month in Toronto, but some of the call participants expressed a need for more discussion time, which may result in a modification of the agenda schedule. Kurt Dahl, copresident of the FGG, supplied a 17-slide presentation

to the calls. The document was labeled “confidential” but was in fact publicly available for the stakeholders. Although the presenters said nothing has been finalized and everything is still under discussion, the proposal presented calls for the sports and culture programs to be based on the Gay Games model and a human rights conference to be based on the World Outgames model. Perhaps the most controversial portion of the presentation concerns governance of the event, which would include votes, committee membership for site selection, site inspection and host steering group, as well as financials. Dahl said a 60/40 split in the FGG’s favor had been proposed, but that 65-35 and 50-50 splits had been discussed as well. Those ratios go to the core of the differences between the two international groups. The FGG underwent an organizational restructuring in 2006 with the goal of keeping site selection control in the hands of established and contributing sports and cultural organizations in the general assembly. A motion by former FGG president Sion O’Connor calls for the FGG to retain at least an 87.23 percent control of the event based on the relative values of the Gay Games and Outgames brands. Delegate Rick Van Tassell of International Association of Gay and Lesbian Martial Artists, noted that the FGG assembly, not its board, has site selection rights and changing that to include GLISA having a role would require bylaw amendments. “We would be adding another organization to our premier and, indeed, our only event,” Van Tassell said. “What are we getting from them in return?”

Christi Barli

Diana Nyad shows some of the stings left by Portuguese Man O’ Wars during her most recent attempt to swim from Cuba to Florida.

“What’s coming to the table is we don’t have the competition,” Dahl responded. “Participants won’t have to choose which event to go to; it’s a hard choice for some participants. What we’re gaining is we won’t have the competition any more.” FGG presenters also confirmed that they had never requested to see the expense and income reports of any of the Outgames human rights conferences.

after repeated, painful stings from Portuguese Man O’ Wars. It was her second try in as many months and third career attempt. Nyad covered about 92 miles of the 103-mile distance before having to pull out after more than 40 hours of swimming because of the paralytic effect of the jellyfish stings. Nyad told reporters she is “so capable of that swim, but that’s the end. It’s a bitter pill.”

Compete seeking LGBT Athlete of the Year nominees

Asia-Pacific Outgames announces grants

Compete Sports Media has put out a call for nominations for its Athlete of the Year. Alfonzo Chavez, communications manager for Compete, told the Bay Area Reporter the winner will be announced at the Compete Sports Diversity Awards in Phoenix, Arizona on November 5 and be featured in the December magazine. Nominations are due by midnight, Friday, October 7. Nomination forms are available at www.

Nyad stung in latest Cuba-to-Florida swim try Out swimmer Diana Nyad, 62, ended her latest attempt to swim shark infested waters from Cuba to Florida early Sunday, September 25,



From page 1

Welts, 58, resigned from the Suns in early September in order to move to northern California to be closer to his partner, Todd Gage of Sacramento. He told the Bay Area Reporter that the single biggest fear he had previously about speaking out publicly about his sexuality was that he would never be able to land another job in the sport he loves. But instead of becoming a pariah, he received a call from managing partners Joe Lacob and Peter Guber, who have been retooling the Warriors over the past year since buying into the team. “We started an evaluation of the franchise in November and came up with a list of two or three people for the position,” Lacob said. “He was on the list but he wasn’t available; he was employed. Two weeks ago we heard he was leaving the Suns.” Lacob said a phone call quickly came from Suns owner Robert Saver, praising Welts’s credentials and character, which set the Warriors’ talks with Welts in motion. Welts began his association with pro basketball as a ball boy for the Seattle SuperSonics. In 1982 he was hired by incoming NBA Commissioner David Stern to build the NBA brand and engage corporate sponsors. Before joining the Suns in 2002, he was credited with creating the NBA All-Star Weekend in 1984; basketball marketing of the 1992 Olympic “Dream Team;” and the launch in 1997 of the Women’s National Basketball Association. Welts said the reaction to his coming out has been nothing but positive.

Organizers of the second AsiaPacific Outgames, held in New Zealand earlier this year, have announced the granting of $35,000 New Zealand ($26,977 U.S.) to 10 regional LGBTI groups: Wellington Gay Welfare Group, Pride NZ, Tapatoru, Waikato Queer Youth, Lilac Collective, Different Strokes Swimming Club, Lesbian Elders Village, and Homophones, all in New Zealand; Youth Services Trust in Wanganui; and Charlotte Museum Trust in Auckland. A total of 48 groups were reported to have applied for a total of $180,000 New Zealand, far outstripping the continental event’s budgetary surplus, believed to be about $75,000 New Zealand. A second, smaller distribution is expected in October.▼

“Nothing negative has happened. I could probably have handled my personal life in different ways. I could have taken care of my personal life in a lot of different ways. But I came out publicly because there was something more to be done.” He had been contemplating several book offers and speaking engagements. “I was kind of looking forward to a little bit of time off, but this opportunity was not going to come along again.” Now Welts said he is house hunting in the Bay Area. “No more commuting will be involved,” he told reporters. “If there was one event I could remove from the human experience, it would be moving.” And Welts said he plans to remain vocal and continue speaking out. He and Gage have posed for publicity photographs for the “No on H8” campaign, and Welts will be recognized by Gay, Lesbian and Straight Education Network on Friday, October 21 in Los Angeles for his advocacy against classroom bullying. Welts said he thought the biggest barrier to out gays in men’s pro sports is a culture of silence. “We don’t have a mechanism to talk about it,” Welts said. “I hope that by my being out, I can help elevate the quantity and quality of discussion.” Asked if he would seek to make the Warriors, who became the first NBA franchise to hold an LGBT Night in 2010, more aggressive in their LGBT marketing like the San Francisco Giants, Welts said, “That’s question assumes I know what the marketing is now.”▼

Obituaries >>

▼ Memorial Sunday for Stud co-owner Benjamin Guibord by Cynthia Laird


riends and colleagues are expected to gather at the Stud on Sunday, October 2 to remember the life of bar co-owner Benjamin Guibord, who died August 16. He was 63. Mr. Guibord died at San Francisco General Hospital from complications of HIV/AIDS and other health issues, said the bar’s other co-owner Michael McElhaney. Mr. Guibord had been hospitalized for several weeks prior to his passing, McElhaney said. Mr. Guibord had been co-owner of the Stud, 399 9th Street (at Harrison) in San Francisco’s South of Market neighborhood for 16 years. He purchased the bar in 1995 and McElhaney came on board a year later. Prior to that, Mr. Guibord, who was also known as “Fiesta,” worked at the establishment. “He worked there over 30 years. He started as a coat-check girl and went to owner,” McElhaney said. Both men appeared on the cover of BARtab, the Bay Area Reporter’s monthly nightlife magazine, in June as the Stud celebrated its 45th anniversary. In that article, Jim Provenzano recounted how the bar bought itself back from the heirs of late owner Jim Fleckstein a few times, as Mr. Guibord was left 25 percent of the business. A group had purchased the Stud at one point and “kind of


Courtesy Michael McElhaney

Benjamin Guibord is shown here on one of his many trips.

annihilated it,” McElhaney said. “So I asked one of the owners if he’d like to sell it. He made an offer and we took it,” McElhaney said. “Let’s do this. It made sense at the time.” McElhaney said he is committed to the bar. “It has a legacy and we have a bunch of years left on the lease,” he said in an interview Tuesday. In addition to his duties at the Stud, where he served as bookkeeper and accountant, Mr. Guibord loved to travel.

“He had gone around the world multiple times,” McElhaney said. “He had wanted to be a travel agent. He loved making travel schedules and enjoyed planning his trips.” At the time of his hospitalization earlier this summer, Mr. Guibord had just returned from what would be his last trip to several Asian countries. He was also “a big foodie,” McElhaney said. Mr. Guibord was born in Milwaukee, Wisconsin on June 24, 1948. He moved to the Bay Area as a teenager and attended high school in Sunnyvale, where he was a cheerleader, McElhaney said. He later moved back to Wisconsin before moving to San Francisco in the 1970s, where he came out as a gay man. “He was in that generation of 1970s queens that moved here,” McElhaney said. McElhaney said that the Stud wouldn’t be part of the gay bar scene if it weren’t for Mr. Guibord. The bar was well known for Hecklina’s long-running weekly Trannyshack night but in recent years has turned to event promoters to bring in other diverse nights such as Big, and Meow Mix. Sunday’s memorial and celebration of Mr. Guibord’s life takes place at 8 p.m. at the Stud and is open to the public.▼

September 29-October 5, 2011 • BAY AREA REPORTER • 15

ebar .com


From page 1

He started a blog with the matterof-fact title “Randy Allgaier is Dead.” “When he died a part of me was very angry. My initial reaction was to be angry at society. Society doesn’t talk about death,” said Hawn. “The way society deals with it is to use these fucking euphemisms. I don’t use any of them.” He thinks Allgaier would be amused by the title, which he discussed with Allgaier’s sister before going public. “There is a bit of dark humor in the title. Randy had a wicked sense of humor,” said Hawn, 58, during an interview at Cafe Flore in the Castro. The weekly updates, now in installment 43, are a travelogue of sorts that take readers along with Hawn as he lives through the “emotions, experiences and rollercoaster ride that consumes his life.” The writings track his emotional journey, going from missing his lover to pondering how he can be intimate with another man. “Originally, it was all pretty raw and factually based around Randy’s illness,” explained Hawn, who turned his initial emails into posts on the blog. “I try not to edit what I am feeling.” At times Hawn describes private thoughts of sorrow and yearning for Allgaier’s affectionate embrace. He has chronicled the death in June of the couple’s beloved beagle, Darwin, and more recently his being evicted from his Castro apartment. Other entries focus on mundane moments, whether watching a movie or the daily routine of getting ready for work. “Today rode the bike to work ... very cold in the morning. Lousy day. I’m having back pain and today was awful,” wrote Hawn on February 22. “I suppose it’s no coincidence that after writing last night about yearning for physical touch that I had a sexual dream last night. Not a surprise at all. I have felt physically lousy all day. Coupled with lonely makes me very down in the dumps.”

Courtesy Lee Hawn

Lee Hawn, right, with Randy Allgaier and Darwin pose for a photo along the Mendocino coast, one of the couple’s favorite spots. Hawn will spread Allgaier’s ashes there Sunday.

Another early entry chronicled his getting a tattoo on his right upper arm of the letter “C” with the superscript “2” to serve as a homage of both him and Allgaier having cancer. In July 2009 Hawn learned he had prostate cancer and underwent eight weeks of radiation treatment. He currently takes a hormone that cuts off production of testosterone to keep the cancer in check. Since that first tattoo he has added a bicycle above his right wrist and Allgaier’s initials on his left upper arm. It is the one thing that, until now, he hadn’t discussed publicly. “I know, isn’t that odd? I just felt it was private,” said Hawn.

Endurance cycling His biking to work sparked an interest in endurance cycling. His friend T.J. Lee, who worked with Allgaier, invited Hawn along on a training ride he had planned ahead of this year’s AIDS LifeCycle. Hawn found himself hooked and decided to prepare to ride in the 2012 fundraiser. “As I began riding in late December in order to commute to and

from work, it has certainly morphed into something unexpected and much more engaging and purposeful,” he wrote in August. “It has improved my heath immensely. It also has helped me to face my emotional life and the journey of grief with some modicum of courage and resoluteness.” See page 17 >>

<< Community News

16 • BAY AREA REPORTER • September 29-October 5, 2011


Castro dining scene

From page 1

Anchor Oyster Bar, a mainstay, has always been a beacon. Criolla is also another interesting new addition.” More new eateries continue to sprout. Last month Trevor Logan, a gay Castro resident, opened Chile Pies (Sweet and Savory) on Church Street in the old No Name Sushi space. The owner of the 7-year-old, New Mexico-inspired Green Chile Kitchen in NoPa, or North of the Panhandle, Logan branched out two years ago to sell pot pies filled with meats and veggies as well as fruit pies. The Castro store is his second outpost to sell the pies, which caught the attention of the New York Times’ food section and the Cooking Channel last year and will be featured in an upcoming Food Network program later this fall. “We had no idea pies would be the next big thing,” said Logan, who teamed up with creative director Wesley Monahan to cook up the recipes. The handmade, organic pot pies have been selling out daily, said Logan, 42, whose team bakes up to 100 to sell between the two shops. He said they have been overwhelmed by the Castro’s warm embrace. “It really started with a bang. All the neighbors have been so nice,” he said.

Having lived in the Castro in his 20s, Logan recently moved back into a place on Twin Peaks. He said he also has been struck by the Castro’s eatery evolution. “I do feel like there is a little more variety and options,” said Logan, who is planning a grand opening for his Church Street location the weekend of October 15. “Like the rest of the city, our palate is becoming more educated and it is infectious, the excitement about food. I think that is reflected more and more in the Castro.” Matt Schuster, 35, and Francisco Cifuentes, 42, the gay couple who opened Canela Bistro Bar – it means cinnamon in Spanish – last week on Market Street near Noe, are hoping their Spanish-influenced restaurant will catch on with diners and critics. “We want to accommodate people who want to come have a drink with friends and capture folks who want a nice sit-down meal itself,” said Schuster. “There are plenty of places to go for a drink in the Castro. But to go sit down for a meal, I don’t think we are as diverse as some of the other neighborhoods in San Francisco.” Cifuentes grew up in Spain and Schuster, a chef, not only fell in love with him seven years ago but also with his family’s cooking. The couple lives in Duboce Triangle and spent years developing their restaurant concept, finding the right location,

Rick Gerharter

Francisco Cifuentes and Matt Schuster, owners of Canela Bistro Bar, take a break in their new restaurant, on Market Street.

and then lining up private investors when they could not get banks to loan them the capital needed to open. “I fell in love with the country, his family, and the family recipes,” said Schuster, noting they are importing olive oils, spices, cured meats and cheeses from Spain but also locally sourcing many ingredients.

More on the way Additional Castro dining spots are on the way. Soup Freaks is remodeling the corner space at 18th and Castro in hopes of opening this fall, while up the street restaurateur

Sam Sirhed, who sits on the board of Under One Roof, has announced plans to open Fork Cafe in the old Fuzio location. While the recent shuttering of Home restaurant came as a surprise to many, the prime corner location at Market, Church, and 14th streets isn’t expected to sit vacant for long. It likely will be taken over and open again for business before the old Patio Cafe on Castro Street, dormant now for more than a decade, sees a proprietor. Building owner Les Natali continues to mull over what to do with the large restaurant space.

“Restaurants want to come into our neighborhood,” said Steve Adams, president of the Merchants of Upper Market and Castro. Longtime Orphan Andy’s owner Dennis Ziebell, whose 24-hour diner is adjacent to Jane Warner Plaza on 17th Street, said “the more, the merrier” when it comes to dining options in the Castro. “High-end destination restaurants like Frances, I think it’s wonderful for the neighborhood,” said Ziebell, who took over his diner in 1971 and added his partner, Bill Pung, as a coowner four years ago. “I love to see new restaurants open up. It provides jobs and supports economic vitality for the neighborhood.” He is less welcoming of having food trucks move in and has been raising questions about the permit process governing how the mobile eateries can operate at the plaza. Castro officials have pushed to see that trucks offering tacos, hot dogs, and muffins without proper permits are not allowed to set up shop on the Castro’s streets. “We are not against food trucks. Our position is the city needs to go back and look at the ordinance about allowing food trucks on private property right in the middle of Castro and Market,” said Ziebell. “We love food trucks. We just think, like everything else in this world, there is a place for everything.” Why the Castro has lagged behind other neighborhoods, such as Hayes Valley and the Valencia Corridor, when it comes to buzz worthy restaurants has puzzled both Bauer and Unterman. “The fact you have a density of gay people in the area, which many don’t have kids and would have more disposable income, I am just surprised there aren’t more,” said Bauer. “I think the area is about to explode. It is kind of reached that critical mass, but I don’t think it is there yet.” In addition to a scarcity of spaces and high rents, Unterman suggested that the demand for better restaurants just hadn’t been there until recently. “Now something is there,” she said.▼


Castro Theatre

From page 13

Longen said the city’s last estimate for a fix was about $150,000, and “They said they were not going to put out that kind of money,” Longen said. Supervisor Scott Wiener, whose District 8 includes the Castro, said a parklet is one option, but “Parklets are typically paid for by the property owner.” He said he hadn’t spoken with theater staff about costs, but a mini park would be “a benefit to their property, so we’ll have to have that discussion about the Castro Theatre supporting the solution financially.” He added, however, “The marquee is an iconic symbol of the Castro. We need to protect it.” Longen noted that the theater’s facade is a registered landmark. Don Nasser, one of the theater’s owners, couldn’t say how much they’d be willing to pay for a solution, since he didn’t know how much it might cost. But Nasser said, “I would hope the owners would not have to pay for the majority of the costs,” he said, since he feels widening the curb, not necessarily for a parklet, is a city issue.▼

▼ <<

Community News >>

Count on LA

From page 9

only gay hotel in the LA area. It is perfectly situated in the heart of West Hollywood. Although mostly gay male, it is women and heterosexual friendly. Amenities in this boutique hotel include a 24-hour pool, hot tub, and steam room. It is in a perfect location a half-block from Santa Monica Boulevard and is a great value for anyone on a budget. The crowd is friendly and it can get very cruisy, if you are looking for that. The newly remodeled Ramada West Hollywood is another wellsituated property on Santa Monica Boulevard. It’s more expensive than the San Vicente but is a good choice if you prefer to stay in a large full-service hotel. By the way, it’s conveniently located right across


Hate crimes

From page 2

Jodi Schwartz, executive director of LYRIC, described homophobia and transphobia as “rampant” and said her organization is doing “as much work as can be done toward empowering young people to step up and make changes in their own communities.” Assistant District Attorney Victor Hwang and FBI hate crimes coordinator Melissa Patrick gave a presentation on hate crimes in the Castro and discussed the difficulty of prosecuting a hate crimes case, since evidence must be sufficient to convince a judge beyond doubt that hatred was the primary motivation. Greg Carey, chair of Castro Community on Patrol, notified the public of another forum on hate crimes scheduled for October 13 at the LGBT center. The forum, presented by the SFPD’s LGBT Advisory Forum, will specifically



From page 15

This weekend he and Lee, under the name Team Randy, will participate in the San Francisco AIDS Foundation’s shorter Seismic Challenge, a 100-mile ride Sunday, October 2 that starts in Fort Bragg and ends at the Russian River. Along the way he plans to spread Allgaier’s ashes at the couple’s favorite spot in Mendocino. Hawn is trying to be the ride’s number one fundraiser, and as of this week, was $2,000 shy of the mark. He and Lee are hosting a fundraiser from 5 to 8 p.m. this Friday, September 30 at Trigger in the Castro to help him reach his goal. “It strokes my ego but it is also for a good cause,” explained Hawn. Lee, whom Hawn has written

the street from WeHo’s newly remodeled 24-Hour Fitness club. The aforementioned Fairfax District has a wonderful boutique hotel called the Farmer’s Daughter. It’s right across the street from the Grove, Farmers Market and a block from CBS studios, where they produce American Idol. It’s a hip Hollywood favorite. Each room is designed to look like a farmhouse room.

For more information

September 29-October 5, 2011 • BAY AREA REPORTER • 17

Classifieds The

Legal Notices>>

The following sites have more information:, (click on the LGBT section in the nightlife tab), and Frontiers/ IN LA ( Click on “Gay in LA” tab for the full list of LGBT happenings). Or Odyssey magazine,▼

address “how to solve the underreporting problem.” The National Coalition of AntiViolence Programs in its July report documented a 13 percent overall increase in violent crimes nationwide against LGBT, queer, and HIVpositive people in 2010. How much of that increase may be due to fluctuations in reporting is not known. The state attorney general’s recently released report, “Hate Crime in California, 2010,” documented 1,107 total reported hate crimes (seven more than 2009) and found a 10.8 decrease in crimes considered “anti-gay.” The report named sexual orientation the second most common bias in hate crimes after race and ethnicity, accounting for 25 percent of all reported incidents.▼ View the full report at cjsc/publications/hatecrimes/ hc10/preface10.pdf.

about in the blog, said the writings have had a powerful impact. “I think it is really great and enlightening,” said Lee. Hawn’s goal with the blog is to continue it for at least a year. Not only an outlet to remember Allgaier, the blog has helped him rediscover parts of his own self. “I’ve discovered I am a pretty strong individual. I never thought that about myself previously,” he said. “I’ve also learned that being direct gets more and better results than being subtle.”▼ To follow Hawn’s weekly updates, visit randyallgaierisdead. To help him reach his fundraising goal, visit www.tofighthiv. org/site/TR?px=2585325&fr_ id=1400&pg=personal.

Monday, October 3rd Richmond 6:00 pm - 7:30 pm Richmond City Council Chambers Civic Center Campus 440 Civic Center Plaza

Tuesday, October 4th San Francisco Mission District 12:00 pm – 1:30 pm Valencia Gardens, Community Room 390 Valencia Street

Wednesday, October 5th Pittsburg 12:00 pm – 1:30 pm Pittsburg Senior Center 300 Presidio Lane

Wednesday, October 5th Oakland 6:30 pm – 8:00 pm Joseph P. Bort MetroCenter 101 Eighth Street

Thursday, October 6th Fremont 6:30 pm – 8:00 pm Centerville Community Center 3355 Country Drive

Monday, October 10th San Leandro 6:30 pm – 8:00 pm San Leandro Library, Karp Room 300 Estudillo Avenue

Tuesday, October 11th Lafayette 12:00 pm – 1:30 pm Lafayette Library 3491 Mt. Diablo Boulevard

Wednesday, October 12th San Francisco Bayview District 6:00 pm – 7:30 pm Southeast Community Facility Alex Pitcher Community Room 1800 Oakdale Avenue

Thursday, October 13th Livermore 6:30 pm – 8:00 pm Livermore City Council Chambers 3575 Pacific Avenue

Tuesday, October 11th San Francisco Chinatown 6:00 pm – 7:30 pm San Francisco Public Library Chinatown Branch 1135 Powell Street

Board of Directors email: or phone: 510.464.6095 CNS#2178618



Dated 9/16/11 To Whom It May Concern: The name(s) of the applicant(s) is/are : ANZHELIKA V BISESI,STEVEN JOEL SCHEFSKY. The applicants listed above are applying to the Department of Alcoholic Beverage Control at 71 Stevenson Street, Suite 1500, San Francisco, CA 94105 to sell alcoholic beverages at 1351 Polk St., San Francisco, CA 94109-4617. Type of license applied for:

Dated 9/22/11 To Whom It May Concern: The name(s) of the applicant(s) is/are : KODE RUAY INC. The applicants listed above are applying to the Department of Alcoholic Beverage Control at 71 Stevenson Street, Suite 1500, San Francisco, CA 94105 to sell alcoholic beverages at 346 Clement St.,San Francisco,CA 94118-2316. Type of license applied for:



The following person(s) is/are doing business as ZAYA NAIL SPA,2970 Mission St., SF, CA 94110. This business is conducted by an individual, signed Sen Huynh.The registrant(s) commenced to transact business under the above listed fictitious business name or names on 09/02/11. The statement was filed with the City and County of San Francisco, CA on 09/02/11.

The following person(s) is/are doing business as KEIKO A NOB HILL, 1250 Jones St., SF, CA 94109.This business is conducted by a corporation, signed Eiko Takei.The registrant(s) commenced to transact business under the above listed fictitious business name or names on NA. The statement was filed with the City and County of San Francisco, CA on 08/30/11.



All the news that’s fit to post.

STATEMENT FILE A-033800400 The following person(s) is/are doing business as INFIELD DESIGN, 499 Carolina St., SF, CA 94107.This business is conducted by a general partnership, signed Marc Infield.The registrant(s) commenced to transact business under the above listed fictitious business name or names on 01/01/04. The statement was filed with the City and County of San Francisco, CA on 09/02/11.

SEPT.8,15,22,29,2011 STATEMENT FILE A-033794500 The following person(s) is/are doing business as I.A.M. BOOKS & THINGS, 740A 14th St., SF, CA 94114.This business is conducted by an individual, signed Mack A Isaac.The registrant(s) commenced to transact business under the above listed fictitious business name or names on 09/01/11. The statement was filed with the City and County of San Francisco, CA on 09/01/11.


Serving the LGBT communities since 1971

18 • Bay Area Reporter • September 29-October 5, 2011


Legal Notices>> statement file A-033808200

CONCESSION OPPORTUNITY AT SAN FRANCISCO INTERNATIONAL AIRPORT San Francisco International Airport has commenced the Request for Proposal process for the Expedited Traveler Service Lease. Staff invites you to attend the informational conference on Wednesday, October 5, 2011 at 10:00 a.m. at Fifth Floor Administrative Offices, Conference Room 28R, International Terminal G, at San Francisco International Terminal. Proposers are mandated to attend the Informational Conference. The Lease requires providing travelers a premium airport experience including express access to the security checkpoints and other ancillary services such as interface for passenger needs for flight connection, baggage assistance, ground transportation, parking and meal orders. Premises includes a check-in and enrollment/customer service stations prior to each active security checkpoint in Terminals 1, 2, 3 and the International Terminal. The proposed minimum acceptable financial offer, which will also be the successful Proposer’s minimum annual guarantee for the first year of the Lease, is $600,000. The proposed term is three years with one threeyear option. The RFP document is available online at http://mission.sfgov. org/OCABidPublication/BidDetail. aspx?K=4666. For additional information, please call Gigi R. Ricasa, Senior Principal Property Manager, Revenue Development and Management, at (650) 821-4500.


statement file A-033803000 The following person(s) is/are doing business as HOGAN’S GOAT TAVERN,2295 3rd St., SF, CA 94107.This business is conducted by a corporation, signed Christopher Webster.The registrant(s) commenced to transact business under the above listed fictitious business name or names on NA. The statement was filed with the City and County of San Francisco, CA on 09/06/11.


Date of Filing 9/19/11 To Whom It May Concern: The name(s) of the applicant(s) is/are : 550 VALENCIA LLC. The applicants listed above are applying to the Department of Alcoholic Beverage Control at 71 Stevenson Street, Suite 1500, San Francisco, CA 94105 to sell alcoholic beverages at 550 Valencia St., San Francisco, CA 94110-1115. Type of license applied for:

47- On-sale general EATING PLACE sept.22,29,oct.6,2011 statement file A-033815100 The following person(s) is/are doing business as SLAM DUNK SOUND & ENTERTAINMENT,1951 Oak St., #4,SF,CA 94117.This business is conducted by an individual, signed A.Haley Myer. The registrant(s) commenced to transact business under the above listed fictitious business name or names on 05/01/11. The statement was filed with the City and County of San Francisco, CA on 09/09/11.

SEPT 15,22,29,oct.6,2011 statement file A-033815300 The following person(s) is/are doing business as NUTRITIONALLYOURS,2670 Pine St., SF,CA 94115.This business is conducted by an individual, signed Jessica Nelsen.The registrant(s) commenced to transact business under the above listed fictitious business name or names on 01/05/11. The statement was filed with the City and County of San Francisco, CA on 09/09/11.

SEPT 15,22,29,oct.6,2011 statement file A-033808100 The following person(s) is/are doing business as 1.HERITAGE WEALTH 2.MATURE MD CONCIERGE 3.LEGACY FINANCIAL 4.1 + MIND DESIGN 5.STABILITYSAFE GROUP 6.WEB CHANNEL 7.NOPAIN HOSPICE,301 Main St.,#28 A, SF, CA 94105.This business is conducted by a corporation, signed Myron H. Marshall.The registrant(s) commenced to transact business under the above listed fictitious business name or names on 09/06/11. The statement was filed with the City and County of San Francisco, CA on 09/07/11.

SEPT 15,22,29,oct.6,2011 statement file A-033807000 The following person(s) is/are doing business as ZHANG’S MOVING CO.,1671 40TH Ave., SF,CA 94122.This business is conducted by an individual, signed Andy Zhang.The registrant(s) commenced to transact business under the above listed fictitious business name or names on NA. The statement was filed with the City and County of San Francisco, CA on 09/07/11.

SEPT 15,22,29,oct.6,2011 statement file A-033813600 The following person(s) is/are doing business as LEE PSYCHOLOGICAL SERVICES,582 Market St.,Suite 708, SF,CA 94104.This business is conducted by an individual, signed William.Lee. The registrant(s) commenced to transact business under the above listed fictitious business name or names on 09/19/11. The statement was filed with the City and County of San Francisco, CA on 09/09/11.

SEPT 15,22,29,oct.6,2011

The following person(s) is/are doing business as BEX SPEX, 1215 Castro St.,#1, SF,CA 94114. This business is conducted by an individual, signed Rebekeah Kouy-Ghadosh.The registrant(s) commenced to transact business under the above listed fictitious business name or names on 09/01/11. The statement was filed with the City and County of San Francisco, CA on 09/07/11.

SEPT 15,22,29,oct.6,2011 state of california in and for the county of san francisco file# cnc-11-548018 In the matter of the application of AMY RAPHAEL HANSEN for change of name. The application of AMY RAPHAEL HANSEN for change of name having been filed in Court, and it appearing from said application that AMY RAPHAEL HANSEN filed an application proposing that his/her name be changed to AMY RAPHAEL CORSO. Now therefore, it is hereby ordered, that all persons interested in said matter do appear before this Court in Room 514 on the 3rd of November, 2011 at 9:00 am of said day to show cause why the application for change of name should not be granted.

SEPT 15,22,29,oct.6,2011 In the superior court of the state of california in and for the city of San Francisco Case # Pes 11-294955 In re: the Ludwig M. Gruber Revocable Living Trust Dated October 1,2003 Notice is hereby given to the creditors and contingent creditors of the above-named decedent, that all persons having claims against the Decedent are required to file them with the Superior Court at 400 McAllister, San Francisco, California 94102, and mail or deliver a copy to Ming Y.Suen,as trustee of the the Ludwig M. Gruber Revocable Living Trust dated October 1,2003,of which the Decedent was the Settlor, at 4477 Mission Street, San Francisco, California 94112 within the later of 4 months after September 15,2011 (the date of the first publication of notice to creditors) or, if notice is mailed or personally delivered to you,60 days after the date this notice is mailed or personally delivered to you, or you must petition to file a late claim as provided in Probate Code 19103. For your protection, you are encouraged to file your claim by certified mail, with return receipt requested.Dated August 31,2011. Signed, Ming Y.Suen, Trustee of the Ludwig M. Gruber Living Trust dated October 1,2003.

Sept.15,22,29,2011 nOTICE OF APPLICATIoN to sell AlCOHOLIC BEVERAGEs Dated 9/22/11 To Whom It May Concern: The name(s) of the applicant(s) is/are : LITTLE VINE LLC. The applicants listed above are applying to the Department of Alcoholic Beverage Control at 71 Stevenson Street, Suite 1500, San Francisco, CA 94105 to sell alcoholic beverages at 1541 GRANT AVE., San Francisco, CA 94133-3323. Type of license applied for:

20- OFF-sale BEER AND WINE SEPT 29,oct.6,13,2011 state of california in and for the county of san francisco file# cnc-11-548071 In the matter of the application of VERONIKA CAULEY for change of name. The application of VERONIKA CAULEY for change of name having been filed in Court, and it appearing from said application that VERONIKA CAULEY filed an application proposing that his/her name be changed to VERONIKA FIMBRES. Now therefore, it is hereby ordered, that all persons interested in said matter do appear before this Court in Room 514 on the 22nd of November, 2011 at 9:00 am of said day to show cause why the application for change of name should not be granted.

SEPT 22,29,oct.6,13,2011 statement file A-033793600 The following person(s) is/are doing business as R.A. MARKETING, 2095 Jackson St.,Apt.204, SF,CA 94109.This business is conducted by an individual, signed Gerard Roy.The registrant(s) commenced to transact business under the above listed fictitious business name or names on NA. The statement was filed with the City and County of San Francisco, CA on 08/31/11.

SEPT 22,29,oct.6,13,2011 statement file A-033817900 The following person(s) is/are doing business as JAKE’S ON MARKET, 2223 Market St., SF,CA 94114.This business is conducted by a limited liability company, signed Tim Travelstead.The registrant(s) commenced to transact business under the above listed fictitious business name or names on 09/09/11. The statement was filed with the City and County of San Francisco, CA on 09/12/11.

SEPT 22,29,oct.6,13,2011 statement file A-033800700 The following person(s) is/are doing business as 1.EMERGENCE 2. EMERGENCE HEALING ARTS STUDIO, 3. EMERGENCE HEALING ARTS, 4. EMERGENCE HEALING ARTS CENTER, 5.INTEGRATIVE MASSAGE AND TRAUMA HEALING, 6.MASSAGE AND TRAUMA HEALING, 4052 18TH St., SF,CA 94114.This business is conducted by an individual, signed Tiffany Wade. The registrant(s) commenced to transact business under the above listed fictitious business name or names on 07/23/11. The statement was filed with the City and County of San Francisco, CA on 09/02/11.

sept 29,oct.6,13,20,2011

statement file A-033780300 The following person(s) is/are doing business as INSCRIBE DIGITAL,444 Spear St.,Suite 213, SF,CA 94105.This business is conducted by a corporation, signed Robb McDaniels.The registrant(s) commenced to transact business under the above listed fictitious business name or names on 01/01/11. The statement was filed with the City and County of San Francisco, CA on 08/25/11.

SEPT 22,29,oct.6,13,2011 statement file A-033819700 The following person(s) is/are doing business as GOLDEN MOUNTAIN CO.,1654 23rd Ave., #4,SF,CA 94122.This business is conducted by an individual, signed Qunhui Qi.The registrant(s) commenced to transact business under the above listed fictitious business name or names on NA. The statement was filed with the City and County of San Francisco, CA on 09/13/11.

SEPT 22,29,oct.6,13,2011 statement file A-033782400 The following person(s) is/are doing business as THUNDERDOG,,4620 17th St., SF,CA 94117.This business is conducted by an individual, signed Eric Flaniken.The registrant(s) commenced to transact business under the above listed fictitious business name or names on 08/26/11. The statement was filed with the City and County of San Francisco, CA on 08/26/11.

SEPT 22,29,oct.6,13,2011 statement file A-033792000 The following person(s) is/are doing business as 1.PURELY DELICIOUS,2.PURELY DELICIOUS GIFTS,2023 44TH Ave., SF,CA 94116.This business is conducted by an individual, signed Brendan Witkowski.The registrant(s) commenced to transact business under the above listed fictitious business name or names on NA. The statement was filed with the City and County of San Francisco, CA on 08/31/11.

SEPT 22,29,oct.6,13,2011 statement file A-033818900 The following person(s) is/are doing business as NEAT ASIAN THINGS, 1825 Post St.,#115, SF,CA 94115.This business is conducted by an individual, signed Etsuyoshi Shimada.The registrant(s) commenced to transact business under the above listed fictitious business name or names on 09/13/11. The statement was filed with the City and County of San Francisco, CA on 09/13/11.

SEPT 22,29,oct.6,13,2011 statement file A-033822400 The following person(s) is/are doing business as S.F. HEALTH CENTER,2721 Judah St., SF,CA 94122.This business is conducted by an individual, signed Haobin Fang.The registrant(s) commenced to transact business under the above listed fictitious business name or names on 09/14/11. The statement was filed with the City and County of San Francisco, CA on 09/14/11.

statement file A-033803400

statement file A-033838400

The following person(s) is/are doing business as MMMASSAGE,930 Sutter St., #408,SF,CA 94109.This business is conducted by an individual, signed Gilbert Colorina.The registrant(s) commenced to transact business under the above listed fictitious business name or names on NA. The statement was filed with the City and County of San Francisco, CA on 09/06/11.

The following person(s) is/are doing business as JING YING CHINESE OPERA INSTITUTE., 146 Waverly Pl., SF,CA 94108.This business is conducted by an individual, signed Xiu Ben Chen. The registrant(s) commenced to transact business under the above listed fictitious business name or names on 02/28/07. The statement was filed with the City and County of San Francisco, CA on 09/23/11.

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September 29-October 5, 2011 • Bay Area Reporter • 19



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Vol. 41 • No. 39 • September 29-October 5, 2011

Smuin Ballet dancers Jonathan Dummar and Jane Rehm with the men of the company (behind Rehm, l-r, John Speed Orr, Jared Hunt, and Shannon Hurlburt) in Dear Miss Cline, a world premiere by Amy Seiwert at the Palace of Fine Arts, part of Smuin Ballet’s fall program.

Populist modernism & the case of

Michael Smuin David DeSilva

by Paul Parish


he ironies. This week there opened in New York City, to enormous hoopla and crushingly scathing reviews, a ballet by a former Beatle: Ocean’s Kingdom, with a score by Paul McCartney; simultaneously, in San Francisco, the fall season of the Smuin Ballet opened, with the handsome showing of four chamber ballets. OK, where’s the irony? Listen, my children, and you shall hear. A quarter-century ago, it was Michael Smuin’s ballet To the Beatles that got similarly crushing reviews from the international ballet critics, who were covering the LA Olympics arts festival when To the Beatles led the bill for San Francisco Ballet’s gig there. He was then co-artistic director of the San Francisco Ballet, and those reviews led to his downfall. The

reviews, and the PR nightmares that followed – front-page news day after day, Smuin fired, SFB board members conducting proxy-fights on the front steps of the opera house – were media events on the same order as the OJ chase, the Jonestown mass suicides, almost on the scale of Harvey Milk’s electoral triumphs and tragic end. Or at least, it was something like that. Obviously, this is complicated. The place of the late Michael Smuin in the history of dance, and of all the arts here, is one of the most vexing questions ever. It could be argued that it was time for a change – the mid-1980s saw a wholesale pulling back (what Joe Kramer, the founder of Body Electric, prophetically called “the Great Constriction”) from the eroticized, fantasy-drenched culture of the 70s. Respectability itself gained new sway; “world-class” became a term of praise, and

covertly meant New York standards. The poet Dana Gioia published O Fallen Western Star, lamenting the crushing of Western poetic voices, using criteria of the New York school. There was more: SFB needed to professionalize or go out of business, and the arts-admin team headed by Richard LeBlond found Smuin impossible. Helgi Tomasson, when he came in, led SFB’s transition, and has made a great classical company out of them, and nobody regrets that. But still, Smuin was a major talent, a great entertainer with a disturbing power to reach very deep, and come up with something true and passionate. For every over-the-top, tasteless, embarrassing piece of Smuin’s, there was a great one; his Romeo and Juliet is one of the very best ever choreographed. His Song for Dead Warriors, about the subjugation of the American Indian, was emotionally direct,

theatrically staggering. The televised version of it won the Emmy for 1984. Smuin (who died in 2007) won several Emmys, not to mention Tonys and Drama Critics Circle Awards. After a lot of Broadway (Anything Goes) and movie work (Cotton Club), he founded Smuin Ballet here in 1994, and had made a good go of it ever since. I can’t help wondering if Smuin couldn’t have made a hit Broadway show out of McCartney’s ballet score. In any case, it’s great to report that Smuin’s protégée Amy Seiwert has made a completely delightful ballet, in the Smuin style, to music by Patsy Cline. It’s a character piece: the women wear pretty, 50s-style shirtwaist dresses in peppermint stripes (by Joellen Arntz and Seiwert), and suffer in pretty much the ways Patsy Cline did, wryly chagrined in a manner that pretends to be country but is in fact See page 33 >>

Bitter poison & gay passion San Francisco Opera’s ‘Lucrezia Borgia’ takes charge by Jason Victor Serinus

Cory Weaver

A Soprano Renée Fleming in the title role of San Francisco Opera’s Lucrezia Borgia.

t the end of the long, impassioned final-act duet between Gennaro (extremely handsome tenor Michael Fabiano) and his male lover, Maffio Orsini (“trouser-clad” mezzo-soprano Elizabeth DeShong), in Donizetti’s gem of an opera Lucrezia Borgia, director and production designer John Pascoe has the couple lock in passionate embrace. As the two warriors engage in what to the audience’s eyes comes across as deep French kissing with an Italian bel

canto twist, it’s clear that we’ve come a long way, baby. Lucrezia Borgia has come a long way as well. It only took San Francisco Opera 79 years since the opening of the War Memorial Opera House, and 178 years since the opera’s La Scala premiere, to find a reason to mount it here. The reason, of course, was not the gay element that Pascoe brings to the fore in his three-year old production, but soprano Renée Fleming in the title role. The superstar, who first sang Lucrezia Borgia in 1990, has built her international career by interspersing


essentially lyric roles and glamorous star turns with forays into bel canto repertoire whose writing tends to lie lower in the soprano range. At age 52, Fleming looked gorgeous onstage. She sang very well, and moved with feeling. If her mildly florid coloratura lacked some of the risky flourishes and extrahigh notes that opened ears on her 1999 recording of the opera’s thirdact finale, she nonetheless sang with admirable steadiness, well-executed trills, and an abundance of vocal beauty. What Fleming lacked was See page 24 >>

<< Out There

22 • BAY AREA REPORTER • September 29-October 5, 2011

Ice cream socials by Roberto Friedman


t has been so summery in these parts recently, we thought we’d share this photo of Venezuelan model Ernesto, currently visiting the Bay Area. He’s captured enjoying a refreshing dessert of soft-serve for the lens of photographer Steven Underhill. Bienvenidos, Ernesto, but be careful, because your cone is dripping! Last week we were part of a crowd dripping with glamour at Harry

Denton’s newly renovated and relaunched Starlight Room, high atop the Sir Francis Drake Hotel near Union Square. Mr. Denton was in the house, posing festively with lovely ladies from Sunday’s a Drag! that enlivens Sunday brunch in the room. That revue features B.A.R. society columnist Donna Sachet, among movers and shakers we saw from the worlds of theatre and sophisticated entertainment, including vocalist Paula West, who triumphed in a recent Yoshi’s engagement, another

classy joint. All was frolic and frivolity as partygoers toasted 15 years of elegant clubbing at the spot called Starlight. Up there on the 21st floor with a 360-degree view, we watched our beloved city get finger-focked by flanges of Frisco’s famous fog. Within minutes, the overheated day gave way to a San Francisco night just the way we like our martinis: bone-chillingly cold. More nightspotty news: Did you know that British actor Hugh Laurie, best-known to American audiences for his role in the TV series House, is a jazz and blues musician, and sings out as well? We sure as heck didn’t until we screened the Great Performances episode Hugh Laurie: Let Them Talk – A Celebration of New Orleans Blues, airing this Fri., Sept. 30, 9 p.m on KQED-TV. In it, the bright-eyed Brit is psyched to visit the Big Easy, bombs around in a cherry-red 1959 Ford Galaxy and on bike, then plays jazz piano and guitar, and sings, with bona fide jazz legends at an atmospheric N.O. nightclub. He gives hands and voice to jazz and blues standards from his new album Let Them Talk (Warner Bros.), joined by such eminent figures as songwriter-pianist Allen Toussaint, soul queen Irma Thomas and crooner Tom Jones. Laurie invokes legends like Professor Longhair, Leadbelly and Jelly Roll Morton, and while his musical talent and devotion don’t quite make him a peer of such exalted company – for one thing, his tempo is too slow – you can tell his jazz-loving heart is in the right place, the blues place.

Steven Underhill

Ernesto will appear on the upcoming site stevenunderhillmodels. com, currently in development.

Lube job Photojournalist Cornelius Washington got the scoop on the third anniversary of the sobriety of gay porn icon Michael Brandon, the new spokesperson for personal lubricant 9X6. Cornelius Washington: Baby, congratulations. I know that you’re a man of few words and a whole lot of persuasion. Try to tell me how you truly feel about your anniversary. Michael Brandon: Well, I really feel incredible! This has been a very difficult year for me, I just ended a six-year relationship. I had built a life with that man, and when it ended, I was feeling the strain emotionally. But I’ve had a wonderful support group of friends who’ve helped me through it, and I particularly want to thank my friend Gabriel.

Cornelius Washington

Porn legend Michael Brandon and SMBD icon Master Ryker.

Endorsements are the barometer of fame in the 21st century, and I died laughing when you first told me about your work with 9X6. You’ll love this product! It’s odorless, tasteless, greaseless and stainless. Let me put some on you [applies product to the back of Cornelius’ hand, rubs it in for a minute]. See what I mean? You can use it as a moisturizer, too! Good, baby. Now, give me plenty of

samples of 9X6, and I will put them to good use right now with some of these hot men who are running around! I know you want to, I do, too! I think every gay man, deep down, wants to have a whole lot of 9X6 up his ass and in his mouth! I know I do. You are too much, but baby, the one thing that I always want you to know truly is that sobriety is sexy. God bless you, Michael.▼

Music >>

September 29-October 5, 2011 • BAY AREA REPORTER • 23

Stephen Danelian

Celebrated cellist Yo-Yo Ma, gifted with musicality & intense focus.

Symphonic sensations by Philip Campbell


he first weeks of the San Francisco Symphony’s 100th anniversary season are rolling out with an exciting sense of event and celebration. Music Director Michael Tilson Thomas has always added a jolt of adrenaline whenever he is center stage, but these early subscription concerts have been especially thrilling so far. Renowned cellist Yo-Yo Ma is no slouch at commanding our attention, but his recent appearances playing the Paul Hindemith Cello Concerto (1940) seemed especially well integrated on a bill that also highlighted the orchestra’s mutual growth with their Music Director of 17 years. The feeling that everyone onstage is accomplished and prominent is real. Of course, Mr. Ma is something of a rock star among serious musicians, as evidenced by the loud and exuberant squeals from the youngsters in the Terrace seats when he first walked on. Opera stars Renee Fleming and Thomas Hampson (both in town for big roles at the War Memorial), seated together in the VIP box, maintained their elegantly low-key profiles while joining in the enthusiastic ovation. The artist himself seemed graciously unsurprised by the rowdy reception, but he did nothing to milk the moment, launching instead into the big glittering Hindemith Concerto with intense focus. The piece is (like so much of this composer’s music) un-endearing while never sounding less than attractive or inventive. There are some big melodies, and the orchestration is hard-edged and brilliant. Ma must be congratulated for championing a relatively unknown modern work, and his collaboration with MTT proved very satisfying. The audience was less impressed with the score than with the performer. A middleaged patron on my right turned and said, without a trace of irony, “Yo-Yo Ma is a bridge between the classical and the modern.” Geez, talk about succinct sound-bites. The Brahms Symphony No. 1 in C minor followed after intermission, and MTT showed his growing interest and clearheaded approach to the Romantics. Other conductors have stressed that vaunted Brahmsian autumnal glow and the richness (some might say thickness) of his scoring. MTT is going for a

leaner sound and more architectural approach. Each movement unfolded with inevitability and careful attention to detail, but it wasn’t until the concluding pages that everything came together. It was a beautiful cleaning of a familiar masterpiece. We love the Brahms symphonies and never tire of hearing them. MTT doesn’t want us to take them for granted. That sense of never-ending exploration was also brought to bear last week, when MTT returned to Gustav Mahler’s huge and often ungainly Third Symphony. There may never be a definitive interpretation of the composer’s hymn to the natural world, but with every visit, MTT is getting closer. The massive first movement (Part I. Introduction: powerful, determined) could unbalance the entire journey in less intelligent hands, but MTT brought us in with an almost ruminative beginning. It was as if the musicians were picking up their instruments and slowly adjusting to his interpretation and guidance. What a wonderful sound eventually poured forth, and it became eminently clear that this was going to be much more than a re-visit to a difficult and fascinating score. Mezzo-soprano Katerina Karnéus was at ease in her big solo “O Mensch!” to words of Friedrich Nietzsche, but I have heard this wrenchingly beautiful song performed with greater involvement. It was, perhaps fittingly, less of a moment than usual. The contributions made by the Women of the SFS Chorus directed by Ragnar Bohlin were also satisfying, if a little less attractive than the charming sounds of the San Francisco Girls Chorus, directed by Susan McMane. Their achingly innocent music brought us to a very slow and ultimately transformative conclusion to Part II. I have rarely been so touched by this movement. There were so many exquisite details and profound insights unfolding, the experience gradually evolved into something exalting and emotional. At once a meditation and bravura display of musicianship, Mahler’s Third obviously remains high on MTT’s list. While I initially wondered if the maestro had anything new to say, I can report that he does, and that it is a revelation. I have one word for the centennial season to date: Wow.▼

Serving the LGBT communities since 1971

24 • BAY AREA REPORTER • September 29-October 5, 2011

Theatre >>

Equilibrium erased by Richard Dodds


t’s as if someone strapped weights to the hands of a clock. “Everything here is so slow,” says the errant son of a prominent family upon his return after a stint in rehab. In Adam Bock’s Phaedra, a contemporary reimagining of Racine’s take on the Greek tragedy, Paulie’s father and stepmother’s passionless marriage has turned languid silence into their own language. Bock’s new play, commissioned by Shotgun Players to mark its 20th season, is not easily recognizable as a work by a playwright who has often reveled in quirky but incisive dialogue and arch situations. Bock reignited his playwriting career and gave Shotgun Players a profile-changing hit with Swimming in the Shallows in 1999. Before decamping to New York a few years later, he produced several more well-received plays, including Five Flights, and his local presence has been maintained with such plays as The Typographer’s Dream and The Shaker Chair.

The story of Phaedra, who falls in love with her stepson, has found dramatic resonance at least since 482 BC, when Euripides’ interpretation of a famous Greek myth was first staged. But “resonance” is not a term that is conjured by Bock’s streamlined suburban reexamination of the timeless tale. Streamlined, but without a freshened insight or dramatic force, and with just hints of the wit so appealing in Bock’s previous plays. Set in the family’s handsome, austere living room designed by Nina Ball, Antonio (Keith Burkland) and Catherine (Catherine Castellanos) live a life of polite armistice. He is a pontificating conservative judge, and she is a bored housewife with an obsession for tidiness. The only spark of life in the household is provided by housekeeper Olibia (Trish Mulholland), who is aflutter at the pending return of Paulie (Patrick Alparone) from his latest prodigal misadventures. Paulie’s arrival inevitably upsets the household equilibrium, especially since he arrives with a surly girlfriend (Cindy Im) in tow. There are arguments, of unfortunately realistic banality, and of course the pivotal scene when Catherine makes her play for the horrified Paulie. Things go downhill fast but predictably from that one wayward kiss. Director Rose Riordan, associate artistic director at Portland Center Stage, shows no fear of long silences


Courtesy Shotgun Players

Prodigal son (Patrick Alparone) and his unforgiving father (Keith Burkland) have much to argue about in Adam Bock’s contemporary version of Phaedra, part of Shotgun Players’ 20th season.

and slow-motion blocking. But the occasional moments of physical and verbal fury can feel awkwardly rushed. Hooray to Shotgun for reaching its 20th season, and a sincere welcome back to Bock, who will hopefully continue his Bay Area alliances from his base in New York. Taking on

the Greeks is a familiar step in the evolution of many playwrights, and now it’s time to move on.▼ Phaedra will run at the Ashby Stage through Oct. 23. Tickets are $17-$26. Call (510) 841-6500 or go to

Lucrezia Borgia

From page 21

brilliance. Although she capped Act I with a high D-flat, and, unless she transposed down, crowned the opera with a high E-flat, her singing lacked the sparkle and inner tension that make for a great Lucrezia. There’s a lot of reason beyond her character’s secret motherhood of Gennaro to feel sympathy for this famed dispenser of poison wine and death decrees, including what Pascoe suggests may have been sexual abuse at the hands of her two brothers and her father, the future Pope Alexander VI. If only Fleming were capable of putting all of that into her singing. This made the artistry of Fabiano and DeShong all the more telling. The young tenor, whose string of awards includes the grand prize in the 2007 Metropolitan Opera National Council Auditions, possesses an extremely beautiful voice whose shining edge and substantial body meld masculine heft with a fair amount of sweetness. “Substantial” also applies to his slim, toned body, whose chest and abs progressively came to light as his suffering intensified. Moving with passion commensurate to his voice, he looked stunning in striped tights and a gold, pseudo-leather outfit that bore more than a passing resemblance to characters from Star Trek or any number of sci-fi epics. His was a wonderful performance. The extremely short DeShong sings like a vocal giant. Her lowest notes have body and depth, if not earth-shaking gravity; her midrange is rich and compelling; and her highs are dispensed with a freedom that many a mezzo daily prays for. Her duet with Fabiano was nothing short of sensational, and her famed “Brindisi” in the final act elicited deserved cheers. Right behind this winning duo was bass Vitalij Kowaljow (Duke Alfonso). Despite misplaced accolades from a few audience members that interrupted his firstact aria on opening night, his voice

Cory Weaver

Tenor Michael Fabiano as Gennaro and soprano Renée Fleming in San Francisco Opera’s Lucrezia Borgia.

took awhile to warm up. Once his monotone yielded to more color and the edge smoothed out, he made for an authoritative, vengeful sadist. The performance also benefited from the presence of a number of Adler Fellows and members of the excellent San Francisco Opera chorus. Most notable was tenor Daniel Montenegro (Rustighello), a first-year Adler Fellow who previously shone as Nemorino in the Merola L’Elisir d’Amore (also by Donizetti). If the voice continues to open up and increase in body, a major career may be in the offing. Although debut conductor Riccardo Frizza has shepherded at

least 10 bel canto operas through major houses, much of his work lacked pliancy and freedom. In Act II, he conducted like a misappropriated Muni driver, determined to leave every stop on time even if meant leaving passengers on the curb. Rather than granting Donizetti’s music the dynamism it deserves, he robbed it of sufficient space to breathe. Thankfully, he eased up in the finale of Act III, allowing Fleming to evoke as much tragedy as she is capable from Lucrezia’s loss of her son and her own life.▼ Through Oct. 11. Tickets at (415) 864-3330 or

Film >>

September 29-October 5, 2011 • BAY AREA REPORTER • 25

Robert Pruzan

Photograph of the Castro scene back in the day by Robert Pruzan, from We Were Here.

‘We Were Here’ reprise by David Lamble


or young Brenden Shucart, it was a magical evening: the Castro Theatre filled with LGBT luminaries, a special solo concert appearance by Rufus Wainwright, and the piece d’occasion: the debut benefit for Project Inform of We Were Here, from documentary poet David Weissman, a film experience that connected the dots of his gay life for the 30-year-old San Diego native. The film plays a return engagement at the Castro, Sept. 30Oct. 6. “I realized that night that I was part of a legacy of activism that stretched back to Harvey Milk,” said Shucart. “It was an unbroken chain, and it was a really great feeling. I was incredibly moved. I’m HIV+, and I’ve seen just about every documentary or sob story about HIV that I could get my hands on. It felt like an approach I had never seen before. It was warm, funny and tender, and so heartbreaking. David had a way of making you fall in love with the narrators, I wanted to be friends with all of them at the end of the movie. I, like, sobbed, it touched me. I tried to watch it a second time, and I just decided I didn’t want to cry through it a second time.” Producer/director Weissman and editor/co-director Bill Weber recreate the sickening moments when San Francisco was hit by an unimaginable tsunami of deadly setbacks: the Jonestown massacre, the City Hall assassinations of Mayor George Moscone and Supervisor Milk, and then the inexplicable news of a mysterious “gay cancer” that was acquiring a body count, and worse yet, creating a palpable sense of fear that the LGBT community’s human enemies had never inspired. We Were Here is presented in direct-address, intimate storytelling: five people describe how the AIDS epidemic challenged everything they knew about themselves and their adopted hometown. Illustrated by heartbreaking video/photo albums of men who perished in the earliest days of the plague, the slow drip of shocking anecdotes provides the human underpinning for the fabled “San Francisco model” for AIDS treatment that held a community together until effective, life-saving drug cocktails arrived. We Were Here is the best film to unite the generations until there’s a cure. Growing up amidst San Diego’s sleepy beauty, coming out wasn’t especially traumatic for Brenden Shucart. Raised in a family whose military tradition stretches back to the Civil War, Shucart was the only kid in his brood who didn’t sign up.

Artist Daniel Goldstein, from Weissman and Weber’s We Were Here.

His parents discovered he was gay by reading his diary; they were actually relieved that he wasn’t on drugs. The trauma hit him at 24, when he discovered he was positive after unprotected sex with a close friend. Watching We Were Here was a kind of cathartic graduation exercise for a new life painfully constructed over the past six years. David Lamble: Did anything in the movie tell you how to adjust to this whole surreal experience? Brenden Shucart: I think I’m going to see the end of AIDS in my lifetime. But that said, there are many lessons to be taken away for people of my generation. The first is a visceral understanding of how much better off we are now; how lucky we are to have had the generations before us fight the fights that they fought, to have access to medication and healthcare services. It wasn’t easy to come by. We Were Here gives a tiny taste of that. It doesn’t spend a lot of time digging around in it, but it definitely gives you a sense of it. Which person in the film got to you? The HIV+ gentleman who lost two partners, the artist. One of them died on the way to the hospital. My ex-boyfriend was very sick several years ago, he developed AIDS, KS. I just related to his fear. I wasn’t sure my ex was going to make it, either. He’s healthy now. But I think that’s when I cried hardest, when he started telling that story. Some of the resurrection stories are pretty amazing, people who literally came back from the dead and now walk amongst us. That’s what Guy, the flower guy, says about the fellow on the bicycle he saw: first, about to die, and

then, post-cocktail in a kind of immaculate recovery. For gay guys of my generation and younger, it’s all so far away: we rarely see people get sick from HIV or AIDS. That’s what’s special about the film: it presented this time as really personal stories, not as a history lesson. There was a point at which they showed all the obituaries [from the B.A.R.,] and they just filled the screen. I was looking at these guys: a lot of the fashions now are like the fashions then, the way you do your hair or keep your beard, and I thought, “These could be my friends.” I could see these guys at parties that I throw, and they would fit right in.▼

<< Books

26 • BAY AREA REPORTER • September 29-October 5, 2011

Speaking in color Tiny Satchel Press offers a diverse podium by David-Elijah Nahmod


y mother taught me from a very early age to always take a book with me wherever I went and I would never be bored,” recalled writer Victoria Brownworth. “So my own tiny satchel always had a book in it.” Years later, the award-winning investigative journalist recounted the pleasure she derived from those first books she read, and how isolating it can be when you’re young and searching for words and images that speak to you. “As a white lesbian, I can’t speak for people of color,” she said. “But as someone who has been dealing with the marginalization of being a woman, a lesbian, and now disabled, I really appreciate what searching for representation means. I have always made an effort to have people of color well-represented in my anthologies.” The Philadelphia resident brought many years of experience to the table when she launched Tiny Satchel Press, her own publishing company, the primary goal of which is to offer a voice to LGBT youth of color.

“I have been a writer since I was a child,” said Brownworth. “My first book of poetry was published when I was 17. Then I worked for a series of mainstream newspapers as well as queer ones as an investigative journalist. I became an AIDS reporter and won a series of awards for my pieces on women with AIDS, pediatric AIDS, and people of color and AIDS. I have worked for the Philadelphia Inquirer and

Maddy Gold

Author, editor and publisher Victoria A. Brownworth.

the Philadelphia Daily News, where I became the first lesbian in the country to have a column devoted to lesbian issues in a daily newspaper.” Her extensive contributions to the gay press include a longstanding gig as the B.A.R.’s resident television

critic. In her popular column, network and cable offerings are analyzed as to how they impact the LGBT community. In 1993, Brownworth was forced to scale back on her workload. “I was diagnosed with primary progressive

Multiple Sclerosis, which altered my career radically. I began focusing on writing books and editing anthologies.” That’s when the seeds were planted for Tiny Satchel Press. “I had been working as an acquisitions editor doing young adult books, and I felt that my concerns about more LGBT-centered books for teens and tweens of color weren’t getting attention. Yet every bookstore owner or kid that I talked to made it clear that these books were really needed. I live in a mostly African American neighborhood where the majority of the kids are poor to working-class. There is no access to books. So I wanted to provide books to these kids.” Tiny Satchel is filling that gap. “I know most people don’t read outside their own groups,” Brownworth said. “Straight people don’t read queers, men don’t read women, whites don’t read black, and so forth. So I wanted to put together a book for black teens and tweens where everyone had to read about each other.” The result was From Where We Sit: Black Writers Write Black Youth. Contributors to the anthology, edited by Brownworth,

Tiny Satchel Press

Dreaming in Color author Fiona Lewis.

included the activist and author Jewelle Gomez. “You have stories by straight black writers and queer black writers together.” Other recent releases from Tiny Satchel Press include Dreaming in Color, in which author Fiona Lewis, a Jamaican-American lesbian, tells a tale of the horrors kids face in high school. Lewis’ themes include bullying, racism, and the dislocation of immigration. “Last Christmas we published Sorceress, a young adult novel by gay mystery writer Greg Herren,” said Brownworth. “His main character was a young girl whose parents were killed, and it dealt with a lot of issues young girls face: sex, isolation and bullying.” The publisher describes the book as a “gothic thriller from a different perspective than we’re used to seeing: the girl is self-empowered rather than just another victim.” Coming soon from Tiny Satchel is a novel about young gay teens in Miami, by Cuban American writer Mayra Lazara Dole. “Sharing stories is as old as language itself,” said Brownworth. “Telling a story is one of the oldest abilities we have as humans.”▼

Read more online at

September 29-October 5, 2011 • BAY AREA REPORTER • 27

<< Out&About

28 • BAY AREA REPORTER • September 29-October 5, 2011

Fri 30 >>


Artery Project @ Various Venues San Francisco Arts Commission’s expansive lineup of arts events includes gallery exhibits, store window installations, dance, music, outdoor performances and more. Ongoing.

Central Market Arts @ Various Venues

From A Token of Our Friendship

Oh, my love By Jim Provenzano


dance Saloon’s Sean Ray, with a special LGBT-anybody-inclusive ambiance, and not just country music. $14. Weekly Saturdays, 6pm-8pm. 351 Shotwell St.

AIDS Town Hall @ City Hall

Community workshops and panel with numerous local HIV specialists; part of the Road to AIDS 2012 federal strategy platform development leading up to next year’s International AIDS conference. Free. 6pm-9pm. North Light Court, 1 Dr. Carlton B. Goodlett Place.

ove is forever, or at least for half a century or more when documented discreetly between men. John L. Silva, editor of A Token of Our Friendship: Philippine Photos of Male Affection, First Half of the 20th Century, discusses and signs copies of his fascinating collection of vintage photos, including inscriptions and histories of some subjects, between Filipino male immigrants, sailors and soldiers. Partial proceeds go to HIV prevention efforts in the Philippines. Books $18 each. Sunday, Oct. 2, 1pm-3pm. API Wellness Center, 730 Polk St. 4th floor. Oh my! How can you not love a gay gala? Dress up swanky for the Horizons Foundation Gala, a cocktail reception, silent auction, gala dinner and program honoring George Takei and Google, and celebrating the LGBT organization’s 30th anniversary. The after-party in the retro-camp Tonga Room takes on a casino theme with desserts and a cabaret lounge. $250 for both events. $75 for casino party only. Saturday, Oct. 1. 5:30pm-11:30pm. The Fairmont Hotel, 950 Mason St. 398-2333. www.horizonsOh, my! George Takei! How can you not love unicorns and rainbows? The annual Castro Street Fair, with multiple stages, live acts, DJed music, booths galore, food and drinks, this year features a hilariously cute graphic of a pink horned pony a la Planet Unicorn (“Hey!”). Gate donations. Castro Street from Market to 19th. Sunday, Oct 2. 11am-6pm. You don’t love Erasure? Oh, L’amour! Turn in your gay card, or recharge it when you see them at the Fox Theatre. Andy Bell and Vince Clarke play electro classics and music from their new CD, Tomorrow’s World. $45. Tuesday, Oct. 4. 8pm. 1807 Telgraph Ave. Oakland. www.erasureinfo. com Classic slapstick, fast-paced costume changes, and Gay Night at the theatre! Love it. Once in a Lifetime, American Conservatory Theatre’ staging of the hilarious Moss Hart/George S. Kaufman Hollywood comedy, gets a visually inventive production by ACT, with an ensemble cast of 15 playing 70 roles; directed by Mark Rucker. $10-$85. Tue-Sat 8pm. Wed, Sat, Sun 2pm. (Some different dates; pay what you can nights, lectures and special events). LGBT Night Out is this Wednesday, October 5. Preshow silent films screened Oct 7 & 14. Erasure Thru Oct. 16. 415 Geary St. 749-2228. Jesus loves you! And so should Christians, says Keith Sharpe, author of The Gay Gospels, which dispels current homophobic Christian beliefs. Sharpe discusses his book October 6, 7pm at St. Mark’s Lutheran Church 1111 O’Farrell St. Also Oct 7, 12:30pm at Alexander Book Co., 50 2nd St., www.alexanderbook. com; and Oct. 8, 12:30pm at the Kevin Berne LGBT Center, 1800 Market St. Once in a Lifetime

Ambitious 24-day indoor-outdoor festival of performing and visual arts. Many independent events are grouped as part of the festival to showcase the area’s growth and artistic diversity. Thru Oct. 16.

A Delicate Balance @ Aurora Theatre, Berkeley Edward Albee’s brutal comedy of manners about responsibility to others. $10-$55. Wed-Sat 8pm. Tue & Sun 7pm, also Sun 2pm. Extended thru Oct. 16. 2081 Addison St. (510) 843-4822.

Desdemona @ Boxcar Theatre A play about a handkerchief, Paula Vogel’s comic romp plays on the backstage drama of three women in Shakespeare’s Othello. $15-$35. Mon-Sat 8pm. Sun 3pm. Thru Nov 5. 505 Natoma St.

Faustin Linyekula @ Novellus Theater Congolese choreographer and his male dance company perform more more more … future, a vibrant life-affirming work, with live accompaniment by Flamme Kapaya. $5$20. 8pm. Thru Oct. 1. Yerba Buena Center for the Arts, 700 Howard St. 978-2787.

Fear Over Frisco @ Hypnodrome Theatre Thrillpeddlers’ new trio of Noir-Horror oneact plays, penned by “Czar of Noir” Eddie Muller offer a pre-Halloween thrill. Prepare to be shockingly entertained. $25-$35. Thu-Sat 8pm. Thru Nov. 19. 575 10th St. at Division/Bryant. 377-4202.

Great Glass Pumpkin Patch @ Palo Alto Art Center

Great Glass Pumpkin Patch. See Friday

$20-$32. Thu-Sat 8pm. Sun 2pm. Thru Oct. 9. 25 Van Ness Ave at Market. 861-8972.

Smuin Ballet @ Palace of Fine Arts Theatre Popular local ballet company premieres Amy Seiwert’s new dance, set to the music of Patsy Cline; also, Smuin’s 9/11 tribute Stabat Mater, his duet, The Eternal Idol and the passionate Tango Palace. $25-$62. Thu-Sat 8pm. Also Saturdays at 2pm. Thru Oct. 1. 3301 Lyon St. at Bay. 5565000.

We Were Here @ Castro Theatre David Weissman’s acclaimed documentary about the arrival and impact of AIDS in San Francisco features touching stories from caregivers and survivors. $-7.50-$10. 7pm, 9:15pm. Sat & Wed also 2:30 & 4:445pm. Thru Oct. 6. 429 Castro St.

Sat 1 >>

Alternative Press Expo @Concourse Exhibition Center Go APE at the independent publishing fair, where hundreds of indie comic, graphic novel and other genred artists and publishers showcase their work at booths, panels and other events. $10-$15. 11am-7pm. Also Oct. 2, 11am6pm. 635 8th St.

Beach Blanket Babylon @ Club Fugazi Musical comedy revue, now in its 35th year, with an ever-changing lineup of political and pop culture icons, all in gigantic wigs. $25-$130. Wed, Thu, Fri at 8pm. Sat 6:30, 9:30pm. Sun 2pm, 5pm. (Beer/wine served; cash only). 678 Beach Blanket Babylon Blvd (Green St.). 421-4222.

Esperanza Spalding @ Paramount Theatre, Oakland Grammy-winning Best New Artist 2011 performs music from her new CD Chamber Music Society. $20-$65. 8pm. 2025 Broadway. (866) 920-5299.

Gypsy @ Fox Theatre, Redwood City

Honey Brown Eyes @ SF Playhouse

Line Dance Classes @ ODC Dance Commons

West Coast premiere of Stefanie Zadravec’s play about two former rock musicians on opposite sides of the Bosnian War. $20-$50. Tue-Thu 7pm. Fri & Sat 8pm. Also Sat 3pm. Thru Nov 5. 533 Sutter St. 677-9596.

New fun line dance classes taught by Sun-

The classic Laurents/Styne/Sondheim musical about burlesque stripper Gypsy Rose Lee’s show biz life is given a local staging. $24-$50. Thu-Sat 8pm. Sun 2pm (also Sat Oct 2pm). Thru Oct. 9. 2215 Broadway St. at Winslow. (650) 579-5565.

Sat 1

Veteran lesbian comic performs Not Getting Any Younger, a new solo show about her ‘coming of middle age.’ $15-$50. Thu & Fri 8pm. Sat 8:30pm. Sun 3pm. Thru Oct. 23. 1062 Valencia St. 282-3055.

Show Ho @ New Conservatory Theatre Sara Moore’s comic solo show about a quirky clown’s life in a low-rent circus.

Olé Couture @ California Historical Society 45 Years of Flamenco Fashion, a runway show featuring Theatre Flamenco dancers in historic costumes from the 1940s to today; with Spanish wine, tapas and dancing performances. $25-$40. 8pm. 678 Mission St. 826-1305.

Oliver DiCicco and Julian Hönig @ Gallery 60SIX Design & Dissolution: sculpture and mixed media, an exhibit of the art of two eclectic designers. Thru Nov. 18. 66 Elgin Park. 577-4396.

Performance Festival @ Yerba Buena Gardens Ongoing series of free outdoor daytime music, theatre and dance performances. Thru Oct. Mission St. at 3rd.

Shotgun Players’ production of Adam Bock’s commissioned modern tabloid-style adaptation of Racine’s tragedy about a woman who’s in love with her husband’s son. $17-$26. Thu 7pm. Fri & Sat 8pm. Sun 5pm. 1901 Ashby Ave. (510) 841-6500.

Rita Moreno: Life Without Makeup @ Berkeley Rep Tony Taccone and Rita Moreno’s must-see solo show about the award-winning actress’s life and times; with music, two very handsome back-up dancers, and a four-piece band. $14-50-$73. Tue, Fri-Sat 8pm. Wed & Sun 7pm. Thu, Sat, Sun 2pm. Thru Nov. 6. Roda Theatre, 2015 Addison St. (510) 6472949.

Teatro Zinzanni @ Pier 29 Joan Baez returns to Teatro in Maestro’s Enchantment, the new show at the theatretent-dinner extravaganza, with Ukranian illusionist Yevgeniy Voronin, clown Peter Pitofsky, aerialist Bianca Sapetto, trapeze artists The Collins Brothers, singer Kristin Clayton, contortionist Svetlana, plus jugglers, comedy, a five-course dinner, and a lot of fun. $117-$145. Saturday 11:30am “Breve” show $63-$78. Wed-Sat 6pm (Sun 5pm). Thru Oct. 9. Pier 29 at Embarcadero Ave. 438-2668.

This Means War is Personal @ Krowswork Gallery, Oakland Dual exhibit of photos and video installations by Jason Hanasik, of highly personalized portraits of friends in the military; and David Gregory Wallace, who documents a Nevada military base’s non-human flying drones. Fridays 3pm-6pm. Saturdays, 1pm-5pm; also by appointment. (Artists reception Oct 1, 5pm) Thru Oct. 15. 480 23rd St. (510) 2297035.

Turandot @ War Memorial Opera House

Why We Have a Body @ Magic Theatre

Night Over Erzinga @ Magic Theatre

Gathering of LGBT deaf locals and friends. 6pm-9pm. Happy Hour 4pm-8pm. First Fridays monthly. 2298 Market St. 621-8579.

Exhibit of sketchbooks, canvases, storyboards, book galleys and other artwork by popular children’s book illustrators from Studio 5 (www. Thru Dec. 16. Gleeson Library-Geschke Center, USF campus, 2130 Fulton St. 422-5178.

San Francisco Opera’s production of Puccini’s classic tragic opera; a co-production with Lyric Opera of Chicago. $10 (stranding room)-$389 (box). 8pm. Also Oct. 4, 7:30pm. 401 Van Ness Ave. 864-3330.

Marga Gomez @ The Marsh

Queer Deaf Social @ Café Flore

Monsters in the Bookshelf @ Thacher Gallery, USF

Phaedra @ Ashby Stage, Berkeley

16th annual exhibit of thousands of beautiful glass works shaped like autumnal gourds, made by more than 30 glass artisans. Candlelight Cocktail reception Sept 30, 6pm9pm ($250). Demos, artist meet & greets, music and food trucks, too. Weeknights 10am-8pm; weekends 10am-5pm. Thru Oct. 2. Rinconada Park (adjacent to the arts center), 777 Embarcadero Road, Palo Alto.

Hafiz Karmali’s new commissioned play about Armenian immigrants to the U.S. $20-$36. Thu 8:30pm, Fri & Sat 8pm. Sun 2pm. South Side Theatre, Fort Mason, Narina St. at Buchanan. 345-7575. Thru Oct. 9.

SF Open Studios @ Citywide On this first weekend of a month of events, almost 1000 visual artists let viewers (and hopefully patrons) see their work in studios; includes many LGBT artists, including David Barnett (above) and Roger Renn at 1370 Noe St. at Cesar Chavez. www.sketchesbyroger. Oct 1 & 2, 11am6pm. Subsequent schedules each weekend thru October in different neighborhoods.

Claire Chafee’s comedy about a lesbian private detective who stalks adulterous married men. $20-$60. Wed-Sat 8pm. Tue 7pm. Sun 2:30pm. Thru Oct 2. Fort Mason Center, Bldg. D, 3rd floor. 441-8822.

Sun 2 >>

Art in Nature: Nature in Art @ Redwood Regional Park, Oakland Free art festival with live music featuring women’s vocal ensemble Kitka, plus dance, sculpture, painting, martial arts, poetry, henna tattoo, circus arts, theater, visual arts, storytelling, arts & crafts and kids activities. 11am-5pm. Shuttle buses from convenient locations.

Out&About >>

September 29-October 5, 2011 • BAY AREA REPORTER • 29

Wed 5 >>

Alternative Visions @ Pacific Film Archive, Berkeley Weekly series of unusual experimental, and strikingly visual short and feature films. $9.50-$13.50 (double-bills). Usually 7:30pm. Thru Oct 26. 2575 Bancroft Way. (510) 6421412.

Christophe Coppens @ Highlight Gallery

Sun 2 Khmer Arts Ensemble @ Zellerbach Hall, Berkeley Cal Performances presents a concert by the mesmerizing Cambodian music dance ensemble, whose 36 dancers and musicians perform director-choreographer Sophiline Cheam Shapiro’s The Lives of Giants. $20-$50. 3pm (school kids show at 11am, $4.). Bancroft Way at Telegraph Ave. UC Berkeley campus. (510) 642-9988.

Cabaret Contest @ Martuni’s Best Female Crooner competition, with Joe Wicht accompanying and Katya SmirnoffSkyy hosting. Amanda King, Michael Grossman, and Sheelagh Murphy judge and sing. $7. 7pm-9pm. 4 Valencia St.

Happy Hour @ Energy Talk Radio Interview show with gay writer Adam Sandel as host. 8pm.

Lola @ YBCA Brillante Mendoza’s heartbreaking film about two Filipino women caught up in a crime involving their grandsons. $6-$8. 7:30pm. Also Oct 2, 2pm. Yerba Buena Center for the Arts, 701 Mission St. 978-2787.

Lucrezia Borgia @ War Memorial Opera House The Washington National Opera production of Gaetano Donizetti’s bel canto masterpiece about the historic femme fatale features soprano Renée Fleming in the title role; in Italian with English supertitles. $30-$389. Oct 2 (2pm), 5, (7:30) 8, (8pm) and 11 (8pm). 301 Van Ness Ave. 864-3330.

Outlook Video @ Channel 29 LGBT monthly news show. This episode: San Jose gay firefighters, Prop 8 standing, singer Melvoy and Bay Area Pride events. 5pm. Also other times in other cities., and streaming online.

Paul Klee and Andrew Schoultz @ SF MOMA Exhibit of works by the Bay Area artist in response to Klee’s drawings and prints. Thru Jan 8. Also, Less and More: the Design Ethos of Dieter Rams (thru Feb 20). Other exhibits ongoing. Free-$18. 151 Third St.

Paul Morin @ Blush Wine Bar Exhibit of oversized portraits in oil and silver leaf, based on vintage imagery. 476 Castro St.

SF Hiking Club @ Mount Diablo Retrace and myth-bust a 19th-century expedition of the nearby mountain, including a tarantula hunt, with LGBT hikers. Carpools meet 1:30pm at the Safeway sign, Market & Dolores.

Sunday’s a Drag @ Starlight Room Donna Sachet and Harry Denton host the fabulous weekly brunch and drag show. $45. 11am, show at noon; 1:30pm, show at 2:30pm. 450 Powell St. in Union Square. 395-8595.

Sunday Skool with Baby D @ Academy of Ballet D’arcy Drollinger (Enrique) returns to SF with a campy aerobics weekly workout set to music from the 80s-today. Retro Spandex and Solid Gold gear encouraged. Dance by donation. Sundays at 11am. 2121 Market St. at Church.

Theatre of Yugen @ NOHspace Local Butoh theatre-dance company performs new and repertory comedic works. $12-$18. Sundays and Mondays thru Oct. 24. 2840 Mariposa St. at Florida.

Will & Anthony Nunziata @ The Rrazz Room New York-based vocalist brothers perform their acclaimed cabaret show. $35. 7pm. Also Oct. 3, 8pm. Hotel Nikko, 222 Mason St.

Mon 3 >>

Aurora Script Club @ Aurora Theatre, Berkeley Staged reading of Tony Kushner’s Tony and Pulitzer Prize-winning play Angels in America: Millennium Approaches; part of the theatre company’s 20th-anniversary celebrations. Free. 7:30pm. 2081 Addison St. Berkeley. (510) 84304822.

Excellence in Journalism Awards @ Orson Meet LGBT journalists from around the state at a reception and awards presentation (honoring Michael Krasny, Ina Fried, and The Bay Citizen and the Bob Ross Student Scholarship winner) presented by the National Lesbian & Gay Journalists Association. Complimentary beer and wine, soft drinks; also no-host bar, hors’ d’eouvres. 7pm-9pm. 508 4th St. $15-$35.

Landscapes @ John Pence Gallery Beautiful array of large and intimate paintings by more than a dozen artists of countrysides and forests. Mon-Fri 10am-6pm. Sat 10am-5pm. Thru Oct. 8. 750 Post Post St. 441-1138.

Marga’s Funny Mondays @ The Marsh, Berkeley Marga Gomez brings her comic talents and special guests to a weekly cabaret show. This week: Keith Lowell Jensen, Shanti Charan and Candy Churrilla $10. 8pm. Thru Oct. 31. 2120 Allston Way. (800) 8383006.

Nanette Harris @ SF Public Library Blue People by a Green Painter, an exhibit of works by by the artist who paints people of color in different tones, and uses recycled paint. Part of the Afro Solo Arts Fest. Thru Oct. 20. 100 Larkin St.

Orchestral Manoeuvres in the Dark @ The Warfield Classic 80s band is back with new and favorite music. $32.50-$45. 8pm. 982 Market St.

Q Comedy @ Martuni’s Sandra O. Noshi-Di’n’t hosts the night of gay laughs, with Dana Cory, Nick Leonard and others. Joe Wicht’s piano bar follows. $5-$15. 8pm. 4 Valencia St. at Market.

Rex Ray @ Gallery 16 Exhibit of colorful graphic abstract paintings by the local artist-designer. Mon-Fri 10am5pm. Sat 11am-5pm. Thru Oct. 29. 501 3rd St. 626-7495.

Ten Percent @ Comcast 104 David Perry’s talk show about LGBT local issues. Mon-Fri 11:30am & 10:30pm, Sat & Sun 10:30pm.

Tue 4 >> Clairdee @ the Rrazz Room

Unusual exhibit of the Belgian artist’s self-portraits, videos and installation examining his life-long obsession with Barbra Streisand. Thru Oct. 30. Wed-Fri 2pm-6pm. 3043 Clay St. 529-1221.

Jacqui Naylor @ the Rrazz Room Vocalist known for her innovative acoustic mash-ups and original songs performs with her trio. $35. 8pm. Thru Oct 9 (7pm Sun). 2-drink min. Hotel Nikko, 222 Mason St.

Keeping an Eye on Surveillance @ Performance Art Institute Group exhibit of 30 artists’ multi-media works that examine societal surveillance in the post-9/11 world. Wed-Sat 12pm-6pm. Thru Oct. 22. 575 Sutter St. 501-0575.

The Last Drag @ LGBT Center New edition of the free LGBT quit smoking class, with 8-weeks of meetings. Must attend first meeting. 7pm.-9pm. 1800 Market St. 339-STOP.

Poetry World Series Playoff @ SF Public Library Daniel Handler (aka Lemony Snicket) and KQED’s Michael Krasny are among the judges at this whimsical poetry event, subtitled Take Me Out to the Ballgame, at which poets Matthew Zapruder, Robin Ekiss, Troy Jollimore, Ada Limon, Dean Rader, and Melissa Stein compete to make up poems based on themes pitched to them. Free. 6pm. Latino/Hispanic Meeting Room, lower level, 100 Larkin St. at Grove.

Thriving With HIV @ Eureka Valley Rec Center Panel talk with doctors, lawyers and HIV specialist and activists Malcolm John, Brad Hare, Michelle Alcedo, Amy Orgain, Sara Paul Malan, and Marc Smolowitz. Free. 7pm9pm. Diamond St. at 18th.

Thu 6>> Joshua Walters @ The Marsh, Berkeley Madhouse Rhythm, a spoken word, hiphop theatre solo work about the performer’s struggles with mental illness. $15-$50. Thursdays at 7:30pm. Thru Oct. 6. 2120 Allston Way. 282-3055.

Our Vast Queer Past @ GLBT History Museum See the new mini-exhibit about the AB101 Veto Riot, a response to then-Gov. Pete Wilson’s veto of a 1991 LGBT rights initiative (thru Oct. 15); part of Our Vast Queer Past, the popular exhibit from the GLBT Historical Society, with a wide array of rare historic items on display. Free for members-$5. WedSat 11am-7pm. Sun 12pm-5pm. 4127 18th St.

Picasso @ de Young Museum Masterpieces from the Museé National Picasso, Paris, a new exhibit of classic early modern works by the Spanish master painter. Free (members)-$25. Tue-Sun 9:30am-5:15pm. Wed 9:30am-8:45pm (the Aug). Thru Oct. 9. 50 Hagiwara Tea Garden Drive. 750-3600.

Same-Sex Dancing @ Queer Ballroom Ongoing partner dance lessons and open dancing in a variety of styles- Argentine tango, Cha Cha, Rhumba and more; different each night. $5-$25 open dancing to $55 for private lessons. 151 Potrero Ave. at 15th.

To submit event listings, email Deadline is each Thursday, a week before publication.

Jazz singer-pianist performs. $30. 8pm. Hotel Nikko, 222 Mason St.

Funny Tuesdays @ Harvey’s Ronn Vigh hosts the weekly LGBT and gayfriendly comedy night. One drink or menu item minimum. 9pm. 500 Castro St. at 18th. 431-HARV.

For bar and nightlife events, go to

<< On The Town

30 • BAY AREA REPORTER • September 29-October 5, 2011

Pushing envelopes by Donna Sachet


eather notwithstanding, the Folsom Street Fair drew hefty crowds South of Market and all over town during the weekend, as locals and visitors alike explored their darker sides and pushed their envelopes. The leaders and volunteers are to be congratulated on preserving this incredible annual celebration. The Imperial Palace (our humble abode) was abuzz with activity preparing for the 13th annual Pre-Folsom Street Fair Leather Brunch, co-hosted by Hector Crawford & Ralph Hibbs, Lu Conrad, Lenny Broberg, Will Whitaker, James Holloway, Eric Forbes, Rick Holland, Kirby Knight, and Michael Polansky. Over 300 guests (from as far away as England, France, and Germany, and as close as The Edge) enjoyed hot brunch (assisted by Tim Sinclair & David Funk, Cyril Barmore, and Drew Canzoneri), cold cocktails (served by beefy bartenders Ken Ferraris & Matt McClelland), earthy décor (designed by Michael Loftis & Erik Nickel), and the convivial camaraderie for which the Leather community is so well known. A great big thanks to all involved! Diana Ross returned to San Francisco this month after an absence of over 40 years, and delivered a 90-minute, nonstop, crowd-pleasing concert that demonstrated her unrivaled stardom. Although she may have appeared at venues in and around the Bay Area, her last performance in San Francisco was with the Supremes at the Venetian Room of the Fairmont Hotel. Before this concert at the Golden Gate Theatre, we gathered at Infusion Lounge with friends including Empresses Alexis Miranda and Renita Valdez, Gary Virginia, K.C. Dare, Drew Cutler,

Steven Underhill

Seen at the Folsom Street Fair.

Terry Penn, Richard Sablatura, James Holloway, Greg Bjornstad, and James Hollenbeck. At the concert, we shared the experience with Les Natali, Michael Pagan, Jan Wahl, Liam Mayclem & Rick Camargo, Emperor Jerry Coletti, Kitty Glamour, and Mike Smith. We’ll freely admit to rushing the stage several times, overcome with admiration for this legendary singer and her timeless music. It has been

confirmed by several independent sources that Miss Ross winked at us twice and blew a kiss in our direction. We’ll never be the same! After weeks of renovation, Harry Denton’s Starlight Room atop the Sir Francis Drake Hotel reopened last Wednesday with a glamorous party with glittering guests, including Paula West, Michael Loftis, Mark Calvano, Page Hodel, Cassandra Cass, Holotta Tymes, and Mahlae. Those last three names you may recognize as being in the cast of Sunday’s a Drag, back in full See page 31 >>

Coming up in leather and kink Thu., Sep. 29: Locker Room Thursdays at Kok Bar (1225 Folsom). Free clothes check. 9 p.m.-close. Go to: Thu., Sep. 29: Underwear Night at The Powerhouse (1347 Folsom). Show off your undies for drink specials. 10 p.m.-close. Go to: Thu., Sep. 29: Feminine Dominance: The Joy of Topping at the SF Citadel (1277 Mission). 8-10 p.m. $20. Go to:

Sun., Oct. 2: Men in Gear Monthly Leather Beer Bust at Kok Bar. 3-7 p.m. Off Ramp Leathers will set up shop. $8 beer bust if you’re in gear, $10 if you’re not. Go to: Sun., Oct. 2: Monthly Rope Peer Workshop at the SF Citadel. 7:30-9:30 p.m. Doors close at 8:30. $10 to help cover costs is required. Go to: Sun., Oct. 2: Castrobear presents Sunday Furry Sunday at 440 Castro. 4-10 p.m. Go to:

Fri., Sep. 30: Truck Wash at Truck (1900 Folsom). 10 p.m.-close. Live shower boys, drink specials. Go to:

Sun., Oct. 2: PoHo Sundays at The Powerhouse. DJ Keith, Dollar Drafts all day. Go to:

Fri., Sep. 30: Citadel Newbie Munch at the SF Citadel. 6-8 p.m. $25 with $10 membership. Go to:

Mon., Oct. 3: Trivia Night with host Casey Ley at Truck. Featuring prizes and ridiculous questions! 8-10 p.m. Go to:

Fri., Sep. 30: Impulse, SF’s Only Play Party for Guys Under 40, at the SF Citadel. 8 p.m.-1 a.m. Under 40, $20; over 40, $30 (plus membership). Dress code: Leather, Latex, Rubber, Sports, Fetish and Basic Black. Go to:

Tue., Oct. 4: 12-Step Kink Recovery Group at the SF Citadel. 6:30-8 p.m. Open to all kink-identified people in recovery who want a safe space. Go to:

Fri., Sep. 30: Pec night at The Powerhouse. Drinks specials for the shirtless. 9 p.m.-close. Go to:

Tue., Oct. 4: Strong Slaves, Bodacious Bottoms & Ass-Kicking Subs: Embracing Dichotomy presented by Molena at the SF Citadel. 8-10 p.m. $20. Go to:

Sat., Oct. 1: All Beef Saturday Nights at The Lone Star (1354 Harrison). 100% SoMa Beef & Co. 9 p.m.-close. Go to:

Tue., Oct. 4: Daddy’s Trumer Tuesdays at Kok Bar. Trumer & Jager specials, porntastic entertainment! 10 p.m.-close. Go to:

Sat., Oct. 1: Boot Lickin’ at The Powerhouse. The hottest Saturday night in SoMa. Go to:

Tue., Oct. 4: Busted at Truck. $5 beer bust 9-11 p.m. Go to:

Sat., Oct. 1: Steamworks at The Edge (18th & Collingwood). 9 p.m.-close. Join the sweaty fun! Go to:

Tue., Oct. 4: Ink & Metal at The Powerhouse. 9 p.m.-close. Go to:

Sat., Oct. 1: Open Play Party at the SF Citadel. 8 p.m.-1 a.m. $25 plus membership. Go to:

Wed., Oct. 5: Fisting Q&A, a Handball Heaven Event at The Center for Sex & Culture (1349 Mission). 7-8 p.m. Everything you wanted to know about fisting, led by a distinguished panel of experienced fisting enthusiasts. Go to:

Sat.-Sun., Oct. 1-2: Cleo Dubois’ Erotic Dominance Weekend Intensive for Men, Tops and Switches. 11 a.m.-7 p.m. Go to:

Wed., Oct. 5: Naked Buddies at Blow Buddies (933 Harrison). This is a male-only club. Doors open 8 p.m.12 a.m. Play till late. Go to:

Karrnal >>

September 29-October 5, 2011 • BAY AREA REPORTER • 31

Erotic explorers by John F. Karr


mong the many festivities leading up to the Folsom Street Fair was the 6th Annual IXFF. That unpronounceable acronym translates as Indie Erotic Film Festival. It was presented by Good Vibrations, and I was able to be at three of this year’s five events. I spent a fascinating evening with Susie Bright, was somewhat of a ringer as the lone critic on a porn creator’s panel, and then was part of the festive audience at the Castro Theatre for the screening of this year’s competition entries. Susie Bright showed herself to be more intrigued by the sociological side of porn than the sexy when she screened key scenes from formative movies of the 1970s and 80s. Most of the stuff was hetero, but the gay content she included was right-on. She uncovered a tender moment in Bill Higgins’ Big Guns, and reveled in a fascination for David Hurles’ Old Reliable flicks of str8 street trade. More pertinent, perhaps, were her comments about gay filmmaker Christopher Rage. She recognizes Rage as “an aesthetic architect of a specific New York form of sex.” Mainstream gay viewers turn away from Rage’s non-linear, fevered rhapsodies. But Ms. Bright saw how Rage “set the tone,” which makes his movies, she said, “the only old porn that looks contemporary today.” Several nights later came the round-table discussion called, A Celebration of Sleaze! During it, I yielded to the filmmakers present, but since I’ve been around the scene for some decades, I was able to provide some historical context as we looked at the changing landscape of porn. Lots of fascinating tidbits came from porn mogul Chris Ward. He perhaps rightly took credit for being the guy who brought whiskers and tattoos to porn, and claimed that the companies he heads shoot between 70 and 80 films each year. I’ve long felt porn’s encounters could be more truthful if the production schedule were less demanding. But hey, it’s not about art. It’s a business. Ward contributed the evening’s most pithy comment when he revealed what he’s going for as a director. “The money shot isn’t when the guy on the screen cums,” he said.


Straight actor KanKun Garcia and the masked villain of La Putiza.

“The money shot is when the guy at home shoots.” A bit later, he delivered the evening’s four-word bombshell by declaring, “Plotted porn is dead.” Most porn is now being tailored less for the structure of feature films than for the Internet’s need for selfcontained scenes. It’s the return of loops, as plot yields to context. That’s okay by me, since I’ve never much cared for story porn. I just want to size up a performer – hear his voice, catch a bit of his personality, see what he’s like in real life – not watch him struggle to deliver bad dialogue in a usually futile attempt at acting. Finally, the big event of IXFF: the screening of this year’s independent erotic shorts. The requirement was that they had to be seven minutes or less. “And this year,” said Camilla Lombard, the evening’s chief coordinator and greeter, “there’s a lot of less.” The brevity was felicitous. Not so good was the near-absence of eroticism. The shorts were surprisingly well-made and a good deal more entertaining than I’d expected. But they were blackout sketches with a sexual context, not

On the Town

From page 30

swing for its sixth year of weekly performances in the Starlight Room. Make your reservation soon to see the show and to check out the beautifully refreshed, modern decor. Also that night, we joined a happy crowd at the gorgeous home of Susan Magley for a party supporting the AIDS Memorial Grove and specifically, Light in the Grove, a magical evening in Golden Gate Park on Nov. 30 when the grove will glow with special lighting effects. Among those attentive to Executive Director John Cunningham and event co-chairs Margarita Gandia and Kile Ozier (by video connection from Orlando) were Will Whitaker, Kirby Knight, Rick Holland, John Wilson, Alexandra Morgan, Matthew Denckla, and lighting designer Franco Beneducci. Plan now to attend Light in the Grove from 5-9 p.m. on Wed., Nov. 30. This Sat., Oct. 1, the Horizons Foundation honors George Takei and Google at its annual Gala Dinner & Casino Party at the Fairmont Hotel. In addition to the standard dinner, auction, and cocktails, this

Steven Underhill

Seen at the Folsom Street Fair.

event includes casino action in the famous Tonga Room. On Tues., Oct. 4, Positive Resource Center invites you to Windows of Opportunity at RF80 at 80 Missouri St. with hors d’oeuvres, dessert tastings, cocktails, and music by DJ Lamont Young. PRC will present their Keystone Award to Kaiser Permanente. Tom Nolan will be honored by Project Open Hand on Thurs., Oct. 6, from 6-8 p.m., for his 17 years

forays into actual sexuality. They were concise, creative and oh so clever. But erotic? Not so much. The winner was chosen by the audience, and the whole house rocked with applause for the loony short that was extracted from the 2006 Mexican feature film La Putiza. Thematically, it explores a specifically Latino ethnic and national gay identity. More overtly, it takes in the shock and violence of wrestling as it pits a star wrestler against a supervillain who challenges the hero to overcome a formidable array of sexual obstacles, including orgies, massive brutes, and gigantic dildos in situations that were both nasty and funny. La Putiza stars a very handsome, straight, legit actor with the nom de porn KanKun Garcia, who said in an interview I dug up on the Net, “The truth is I do not want to make a career in porn, but the script captivated me. I am a stage actor. I like having a porn movie in my résumé because it obviously speaks of versatility.” The role’s challenges included the other players not being to Garcia’s taste. “Frankly, none of them were my type.” Inquiring minds want to know – what type of guy does a str8 actor go for?▼

of service to this magnanimous organization, offering meals with love to homebound individuals struck by AIDS and other lifethreatening conditions. Expect heartfelt remembrances, humorous recollections, and celebrity surprises, but reserve a spot now, space is limited. Celebrated comedienne Pam Ann takes San Francisco by storm on Sat., Oct. 8, at the Castro Theatre, hosted by Sasha Soprano. Perfectly timed with the recent debut of the Pan Am television series, Caroline Reid, aka Pam Ann, skewers all things related to airline travel. Proceeds benefit LYRIC, One Family, and It Gets Better Project. Heklina hosts Politics is a Drag, a party and fundraiser for Mayoral candidate Bevan Dufty on Sun., Oct. 9, from 7-10 p.m. at Beatbox. A galaxy of drag queens is scheduled to perform, including Pollo Del Mar, Anna Conda, Cookie Dough, Sister Roma, Matthew Martin, Ethel Merman, Lindsay Slowhands, and this intrepid columnist. With a cast like this, a sliding-scale door charge, and the great ambiance of Beatbox, how can you say no?▼

<< TV

32 • BAY AREA REPORTER • September 29-October 5, 2011

Curtain call for ‘All My Children’ by Victoria A. Brownworth


he new fall season is just great, isn’t it? Some nights we are spoiled for choice, there are so many good shows to watch. Plus, the reality shows have a plethora of queer contestants. This does not make up for the dearth of queers on regular programming, but it’s still good news. Before we laud the newly laudable, however, let us take a moment to bow our heads and give thanks for the 41 years that All My Children and the denizens of Pine Valley brought us great stories, including the longestrunning queer storyline ever on the tube. Sept. 23 marked the final TV episode of AMC, and it really did

end with a bang, as JR Chandler shot into a room crowded with key players and then the screen went dark. Borrowing from the final episode of The Sopranos, but we prefer to consider it an homage. Over the past few months AMC evolved a storyline in which the evil Dr. David Hayward (Vince Irizarry), one of Pine Valley’s most loathed Lotharios, turned out to be a benevolent Dr. Frankenstein. It seems Hayward had his own secret clinic where he was dutifully bringing beloved and presumed-dead PV residents back to life. This device not only made for a multi-layered plot that included the entire cast, but also opened

the door for many of the show’s favorite characters of the past few years to literally rise from the dead, including Kendall’s husband, Zach; Greenlee’s former husband, Leo; JR’s mother and Tad’s one-truelove, Dixie; and in the show’s final days, the beloved Stuart Chandler. Gotta love that Agnes Nixon. The show’s creator loved complex and controversial stories, and over the years AMC showcased some of the most provocative tales on the tube. Often this benign daytime drama was addressing issues that prime time wouldn’t touch, like the Vietnam War well before it ended, a real taboo on the tube. In another groundbreaker, Erica Kane, the show’s keystone played by the inimitable Susan Lucci for all 41 years, had the first legal abortion on TV in 1973, the same year as Roe v. Wade became law. AMC also had a strong African-American couple in Jesse and Angie, when other soaps were avoiding race. Later, Angie was paired with Cliff, who was white, for one of the first interracial relationships on TV. When Stuart married Cindy, AMC addressed AIDS. Cindy had contracted the disease from her former husband, an IV-drug user. Not only was this pivotal storyline educational (the person with AIDS was heterosexual), but Cindy also became the victim of anti-AIDS violence, as were so many people with AIDS in the 1980s. Other social issues AMC addressed included drug addiction and alcoholism, both of which Erica battled. It was also revealed that Erica had been the victim of rape as a young teen, when one of her father’s friends assaulted her at her 14th birthday party. She gave birth to a baby, Kendall, whom she gave up for adoption. Meanwhile Erica faced several battles with her other daughter, Bianca: first when Bianca nearly died from anorexia, and then when she declared that she was a lesbian. Bianca had met another girl in rehab whom she fell in love with. Nixon said when Bianca’s lesbianism was revealed that she had always wanted to showcase a gay storyline. By making the queer character a central and beloved figure in PV, Nixon grabbed the audience’s attention; this wasn’t some peripheral character, but a main player. Through Erica’s struggle to accept Bianca’s sexual orientation, she brought the conflicts parents of LGBT children face to the fore. Meanwhile, Bianca brought the issues queer teens face, including isolation and bullying, into the spotlight.

Steve Fenn/ABC

Colin Egglesfield and Susan Lucci on an episode of All My Children.

Bianca, played until 2010 by Eden Riegel and since then by Christina Bennett Lind, never wavered in her lesbianism. Her only sexual encounter with a man was when she was raped by Kendall’s sociopathic boyfriend, Michael. She later gave birth to a baby girl as a result of the rape, leading to a storyline about the impact of rape on women. Bianca did become involved with Zarf (later Zoe), a transgender rock star, and their initial attraction disturbed her, because she thought of Zarf as a man, until he explained his transgender feelings and began dressing like Zoe. The storyline was one of the show’s most controversial, but like Bianca’s lesbianism, received fan raves, critical acclaim and more Emmy nods for Riegel. AMC had tackled homophobia briefly in the 1980s in a storyline about a gay student and teacher, but Bianca was a central character. Bianca was a high school lesbian with no lesbian friends until she sneaked out to a queer bar and met Rain. Then she became involved with a series of other women, and finally was married in Connecticut soon after that state legalized samesex marriage. She and her wife had a child together through AI. Of course, for fans, the largerthan-life Lucci was the pivot without whom AMC would likely have foundered well before ABC decided to cancel it in April. But for queer audiences, especially teens, Bianca was a fan favorite because she represented them: the one minority that rarely got seen on the tube. So it’s with sadness that we bid adieu to AMC, although Prospect Park is negotiating to bring the soap back as a web series. In the final episode (which can be seen at, Bianca and her new love Marissa are together with Bianca’s children, as well as Kendall and Zach and the erstwhile Erica Kane. It’s hard to imagine the TV landscape without Lucci, although rumors have persisted that Marc Cherry will be bringing her to Wisteria Lane during the final season of Desperate Housewives, which premiered Sept. 25 and portends to be amazing. But for those of us who grew up with Erica and her PV friends and foes, it was the end of an era as that gunshot went off and the screen went black. Kudos to all who brought the soap to life, especially Nixon and Lucci. And brava to Riegel, Lind and all the women Bianca was involved with over the 12 years her storyline ran: somewhere around 2,500 days on screen for our Bianca. It was a great run.

Chewing the fat We wish we could say that AMC has been replaced with something fantastic, but it has not. The Chew (dear God) can best be described as

Rachel Ray meets The Talk. It has the token queer interior decorator and Dr. Oz’s daughter, an overweight chef and a quirky woman of color. It’s likeable enough, but did we really need another food and howto-set-your-table show? Isn’t that what The Nate Berkus Show has been doing to flagging ratings over at NBC? Speaking of ratings, why-oh-why were the ratings for Glee down so low for the season opener? Oh we know: because the show has lost its edge and possibly its heart. There were hilarious moments, like when Rachel and Kurt go in to talk to the guidance counselor and she hands them a pamphlet titled Me and My Hag, but those were regrettably few. The musical numbers were uneven: spectacular (best rendition of “Anything Goes” ever), strange (Blaine doing Tom Jones) and just awful (let’s stop doing Wicked now, please, especially with hats and brooms). We loved seeing Quinn with her new punk look and pink hair, even if just as a sexy retro sight-gag. And we love that Blaine gave up the Warblers for Kurt (even if we wonder how he could just change schools like that). But much as we love Jane Lynch (and she did a creditable job at the Emmys), we have really come to loathe Sue and her one-note character, which has reduced Lynch to a one-note actor. We’ve even come to dislike Becky, that’s how much we are tired of Sue. What happened with Santana? Is she still a lesbian? Last season she was doing the coolest thing with the gay sports geek. What happened to that storyline? Continuity, please! We think this show can do (and has done) much better. Since it remains the gayest show on the tube, we hope they get it together and remember that Glee is iconic and ironic, and that glitter-bombing Sue and bringing in three purple pianos is just not enough. We’d like to see them do something groundbreaking, like bring in gorgeous transgender actress Aneesh Sheth, who was on NBC’s ill-fated Outsourced last season, and could easily fit in with the Gleeks. Bring in a little Bollywood. Sheth could also fit in nicely with all the pretty young things over on the CW. That network really is a pedophile’s delight. We had to laugh wryly last month when it was suggested that Sarah Michelle Gellar (who cut her acting teeth as bad girl Kendall Hart on AMC, then went on to become Buffy, the Vampire Slayer) was too old to be a lead character on the CW. She’s 34, and looks 28. Her show Ringer is one of the best new shows this season, and she is fabulous, edgy and multifaceted in it. See page 33 >>

Read more online at

September 29-October 5, 2011 • BAY AREA REPORTER • 33


Now playing: demons viral & racist by David Lamble


ontagion Fans of the late Randy Shilts’ AIDS exposé And the Band Played On may experience a sinking feeling when they meet Contagion’s Patient Zero, Beth Emhoff (Gwyneth Paltrow). Returning from a Hong Kong business trip, Beth develops flu-like symptoms, dying suddenly in a Minneapolis intensive care unit before husband Mitch (Matt Damon) realizes she’s that sick. The medical detectives slap Mitch into quarantine before discovering his natural immunity to the virus, whose origins, incubation period and rate of infectiousness are a complete mystery. Director Steven Soderbergh puts us through a full immersion, with every detail of the epidemic bringing to life Scott Z. Burns’ medically vetted screenplay, making us hyperaware of the potentially deadly consequences of the most innocuous human behaviors. “The average person touches their face three to five times every waking hour. In-between, we’re touching water fountains, doorknobs and each other.” At a time when government workers are demonized in every news cycle, Contagion embeds us with smart, brave health scientists who risk everything to prevent a reoccurrence of 1919’s deadly flu epidemic. There’s a running battle


Scene from director Steven Soderbergh’s Contagion: full immersion.

with the return home of Jackson, Mississippi native Eugenia “Skeeter” Phelan (Emma Stone). A battle of wills ensues between Skeeter and her high-strung mom, Charlotte (Allison Janney). “I got a job today with the Jackson Reader.” “Good, you can write my obituary: Charlotte Phelan, dead, her daughter still single.” The Help is virtually bereft of male energy. Like so many bigconcept Hollywood films, its appeal is so gender-specific as to be virtually unwatchable by anyone not in its

target demographic. The main story is reasonably compelling: Skeeter, freshly home from college, is appalled by the narrow provincialism and blatant bigotry displayed at the weekly bridge club, populated by women she grew up with. Skeeter’s one-time friend and now bitter rival, Hilly Holbrook (Bryce Dallas Howard), fires the opening salvo, a proposed local law that would require black maids to use their own separate washrooms, sometimes built as backyard outhouses. As Hilly seeks to tighten the noose of Jim Crow, the B&W TV her mom (sassy Sissy

Spacek) uses to watch her soap (The Guiding Light) starts to reverberate with images that roil the bridge club, including that of a soon-to-be martyred Medgar Evers. Skeeter’s growing alienation finds an outlet in her job at the local paper, ghosting a householdcleaning column. She seeks practical cleaning tips from two of the town’s longest employed maids, Aibileen Clark (Viola Davis) and Minny Jackson (Octavia Spencer). Skeeter’s clandestine conversations with the maids make her believe that telling their stories – the saga of humiliation and petty abuse earned raising white women’s children – might give them a voice, and jumpstart her dream of being a New York published writer. At its best, The Help redresses the chauvinism of films like Mississippi Burning that depict Southern blacks as virtual bystanders in their own liberation. At its worst, the film trivializes the struggle, by whitewashing the evil represented by the sitcom-absurd bridge-club women. Howard is distressingly shrill and one-dimensional in the pivotal role of the bitter racist Hilly. Her comeuppance is deliciously rendered in the gift of a special-ingredients chocolate cream pie and the sting of a furious Davis proclaiming the ultimate Bible Belt insult: “You’re a godless woman!”▼

Smuin Ballet

From page 21

universal, in one song after another. Dear Miss Cline is a series of choreographed skits, casually sophisticated, that distort classical forms to make them look rural while letting the grand pirouettes float and hover and suspend – which satisfies the balletomane’s desire to see elegance and grace, and also expresses the hopes and desires of the young lovers, just before, of course, they do something wrong and the lover walks out. Miss Seiwert is perhaps the most talented and prolific young choreographer working from a ballet base around here. Like Smuin, she is a generous worker, well-liked in the community, quick to help other dancers, and like Smuin, she is very inventive. Her specialty is reconfiguring the body into surprising new articulations – “How’d that leg get over there?” Her ballets can look unedited, like she’s poured out too many ideas and not pruned enough. This time she’s found a happy through-line, and managed to be not just witty but include a belly laugh. And one piece, “Pick Me Up on Your Way Down,” closes on a moment of quiet surprise that’s truly satisfying. She’s chosen shrewdly from the Cline canon. Wisely omitting


between a government health chief, played with silky-smooth authority by Laurence Fishburne, and an unscrupulous blogger, Alan Krumwiede, brought vividly to life by Jude Law. In Krumwiede’s hands, bad information becomes as dangerous a killer as the virus itself. For San Franciscans, there’s feral delight in watching Krumwiede stalking ravaged, Victorian-lined streets. The blogger is promoting his own home remedy, based on the lie that he has been cured of the virus. The sight of this Web demon peddling his wares on garbagestrewn blocks recalls the eerie thrills of Philip Kaufman’s San Fran remake of Invasion of the Body Snatchers. Contagion’s deadly effectiveness is augmented by an A-list ensemble: Kate Winslet’s dedicated scientist, who expires in one of her own field units; Jennifer Ehle and Demetri Martin, toxicologists who are killing lab monkeys at warp speed to detect the virus’ DNA and speed development of a vaccine. Elliott Gould does a funny cameo as a grouchy San Francisco virologist who disobeys orders and unmasks the virus. The Help Hollywood’s other face is disturbingly on display in Tate Taylor’s adaptation and direction of Kathryn Stockett’s 2009 bestseller. The story kicks off in the early 1960s,

Lavender Tube

From page 32

So we really like The Secret Circle, which has bad girl and good girl witches, sexy warlock eye-candy, and a compelling inter-generational supernatural premise. We also are glad to see that Gossip Girl has retained queer cred with a cutiepie gay boy. But if you are tuning in to H8R, you need a good slapping. That show is exactly what’s wrong with TV, Mario Lopez’s hot bod and cute dimples notwithstanding. Speaking of slapping, our favorite soulless lesbian is back now that The Good Wife has returned for the new season. Kalinda, how we have missed you. You are the Mrs. Peel of our time, with your leather outfits

‘Dear Miss Cline’ is a series of choreographed skits, casually sophisticated, that distort classical forms to make them look rural. “Crazy,” she’s only used “Walking after Midnight” and “She’s Got You” from the celebrated numbers, and included items like “I Don’t Wanta” and a version of “Bill Bailey, Won’t You Please Come Home?” (in which Miss Cline valiantly tried not to swing, and thank God, she failed). The ballet is a thorough-going success; you can always hear the music; the dancers, who have excellent technique and musicality, are adorable throughout; there’s especially fine work from Jane Rehm, Susan Roehmer, Jonathan Dummar, Christian Squires, John Speed Orr, and the ever-fine Erin Yarbrough-Stewart. The other wonderful piece on the show was Smuin’s own “Tango Palace,” a character ballet using the

style, imagery, and attitudes of tango to make a ballet very finely wrought, using the techniques of August Bournonville to make dances with beautiful gradients in the rhythms and scale of the steps, so the many small steps make the medium-sized ones blossom quickly and fade, and the truly grand ones stand out in all their Latin splendor. SF’s popular tango teachers Christy Cote and Daniel Peters coached the dancers in style. There are the expected sexual tango-games, but with surprises: when the comehither girl suddenly spurns the guy she gave the eye to, another guy steps up and we get to see two men (Squires and Shannon Hurlburt) dance superbly to the song instead. “Tango Palace” is modeled after

and baseball bats. Plus, in good news for queer viewers of this show, Alicia’s gay brother Owen is staying in Chicago and getting a love interest. Who will not be Kalinda. Finally, we would be remiss if we failed to comment on the hype surrounding Chaz Bono on Dancing with the Stars. Yes, there’s a transman on DWTS. And kudos to Lacey Schwimmer, Chaz’s partner on the show, for her unflagging and obviously genuine support. Give her the “Best Straight Girl” award. But did anyone notice that there’s also a gay man (a total flamer, in fact) on the show as well? There are few men in America more flamboyantly gay than Carson Kressley. We aren’t sure what it means that no one has mentioned Carson while everyone is

talking about Chaz, except possibly that Carson’s mother isn’t Cher (yes, we said it). But since so many of the interview questions posed to Chaz have to do with Cher, we think it’s time to move on to Carson. Just saying. Plus, Chaz did reveal on The Talk that Cher will indeed be coming to DWTS at a later date, so everyone can exhale now. We think if DWTS really wanted to be ground-breaking, they would have paired Carson with Maxim. Or perhaps bring on Aneesh Sheth: having a hot transgender woman in skimpy girl clothes would really shake things up, wouldn’t it? So on the off chance that anything so dangerously and fabulously queer might ever happen on the tube, you really must stay tuned.▼

David DeSilva

The Smuin Ballet Company in Dear Miss Cline, a world premiere by Amy Seiwert at the Palace of Fine Arts, part of Smuin Ballet’s fall program.

Balanchine’s Liebeslieder Walzer. The first half has people in evening clothes and heeled shoes, with a second half under the stars (ladies in pointe shoes). Smuin’s second half does not, alas, transcend the first. The piece closes strong, however, with the mind-expanding use of Edith Piaf ’s “No, je ne regrette rien,” a tango from the streets of Paris.

Also on the program were Smuin’s Eternal Idol, a duet in nude tights from 1969, when the sexual revolution was young, made for the superstar ballerina Cynthia Gregory; and Smuin’s 2002 full-cast piece Stabat Mater, a memorial to those who died on 9/11; Erin Yarbrough danced the lead with grace and nobility.▼

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34 • Bay Area Reporter • September 29-October 3, 2011


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September 29-October 3, 2011 • Bay Area Reporter • 35

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September 29, 2011 edition of the Bay Area Reporter  

The undisputed newspaper of record for the San Francisco Bay Area LGBT community and the oldest continuously-published gay newspaper in the...

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