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08

FUSE FEATURES

12

Most lesbians know Tegan and Sara for their music, but they are more than just makers of power pop chick tunes.

18 Who are your gay icons? It seems they are a dime a dozen — poets to politicians, stylists to singers.

FUSE OP.ED 16

16 Xmas chaos. A few handy tips for keeping stress-free during this crazy time of the year.

18

37

For many people in the GLBTQI community, family has a different meaning, but does it still equal Christmas?

FUSE REGULARS 04 Editor’s Rant & Your Say

FUSE08 DECEMBER 2009

38

CONTENTS

10 We chat with Keith Brockett, star of the hit play Porcelain and the ABC TV show The Librarians.

06 What’s On in Canberra 08 The Trap : Local & Gritty 14 The Buzz : News, Gossip & Stuff 22 Fabulous Things for Xmas

23

26 Grooming : Skin Care Survival Tips

PUBLISHER & DESIGN Lithium Innovation Pty Ltd {www.lithium.net.au}

28 Out & About : Canberra’s Night Life

EDITOR Alexander Thatcher {editor@fusemagazine.com.au}

34 Footlights : Menopause the Musical

ASSOCIATE EDITOR Yasmin Element

{

24 Grooming : The Dos and Don’ts

42

32 Top Queer : Holiday Road Trip

PRODUCTION & EDITORIAL Christopher Powell

38 Body Shape : Holiday Fitness 40 A New Campaign Celebrates Sex

THANK YOU TO ALL OUR CONTRIBUTORS Tony Hamlyn Damien Pratt Scott Malcolm Robert Henderson Brendan Farnhill Logan Smith Glen Rodden Chad Wijayatilake Carmen Sarjeant Christopher Powell Debbie Tonkin Stuart Poole

Rose Pappalardo Simon Copland Brooklyn Hulands David Mills Lucy Jane John Kloprogge

PHOTOGRAPHERS Snez Saravovska

Douglas Robinson

Mandy Sharplin

37 Ear Candy : Music Reviews

41 Money Shot : It Snuck Up on Me! 42 Out & About : More Photos of You 43 Equal Love Marriage Update 46 World Stage : Oppressive Uganda 47 FUSE Business Directory 48 Dear Rose

CONTACT Advertising, editorial enquiries or letters Telephone: +61 2 6232 7662 • Email: editor@fusemagazine.com.au Mail: PO Box 3577 Manuka ACT 2603 • ISSN 1836-8387

www.fusemagazine.com.au All rights reserved. No part of the magazine may be reproduced in whole or in part without written permission from the publisher. The appearance, mention or likeness of any person or organisation in editorial or advertising in no way suggests sexual or political orientation. Photographs used to illustrate editorial do not depict the real lives, behaviour or sexuality of the models. Opinions expressed in the magazine are not necessarily those of the publisher. Submissions of text, photographs or any other material will be taken as consent to publish said material. Original boy cover photo © iStockphoto.com/nico_blue

FUSE 1


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Alexander Thatcher, Editor Have a sparkly Xmas!

WHAT’S EDITOR’SON RANT

A QUEEN’S XMAS MESSAGE I’m an “Editor’s Christmas Message” virgin and I feel a great deal of pressure to perform well so afterwards you all feel satisfied and maybe even a bit tingly — I wonder if there is a pill for that… probably something I can pick up on the internet at a discount price! I didn’t want it to sound like some corny Xmas card your mum sends, be too preachy, or too formal like THE Queen’s Christmas message — although I was keen to use the words “annus horribilis” somewhere. I wanted to include everyone, because we don’t all celebrate Christmas — but the end of the year does have meaning for us all, I think. I started musing over what it is that the end of the year (and Christmas) really means. Is it just a big gift-fest, an over-indulgence in consumerism, or something more — like a time to reflect, an opportunity to understand and seek happiness. Then Ebenezer Scrooge popped up on the TV (another remake of this tired old classic), the essence of an unhappy man with “everything” — a bit like many of us in the western world. Most of us think, if we are honest enough to admit it, that happiness comes through getting stuff — a partner, new car, TV, better job, money. But Ebenezer Scrooge was unhappy not because of a failure to get, but to give. It’s a poignant lesson and this, I think, is probably the most important message of not just Christmas but of life. This truth is often right there in front of us. Recently we bought a new flashy TV to replace the old cathode ray tube we’d had for more than a decade. I felt so much happiness when I finally got it home — Alex loves his TV stories! But like all things, the feeling quickly left me and before long it was just the TV again (truth be told, I’ve been so busy with work I’ve barely had time to watch it). It’s the same at Christmas, you see all the kids excited to get their presents but by late afternoon they’re playing with the boxes instead, making cubby houses and little forts. Receiving only brings fleeting joy. Christmas is a good time of the year to remind ourselves of the truth. The most important path to happiness is that of giving. Not just gifts wrapped in fancy paper but those of love, kindness, charity and forgiveness — you just can’t put a price on them — they will be your greatest gifts, ones that can last a lifetime. So enjoy all those wonderful things the end of the year brings: time with friends and family, a break from work, and way too much food and drink. Oh and remember to enjoy your gifts knowing their true worth is actually from the giving and the love that comes with them. Lastly I would like to take this opportunity to let my partner Christopher know that if it was not for all his love and constant support this magazine would probably not even exist. And it’s not the TV that will fill me with joy this Xmas, but the guy that’s sitting next to me watching it. Wishing everyone, of every colour, creed, religion and sexual identity all the joy and happiness life can bring. Enjoy FUSE08, enjoy your holidays.

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FUSE

READERS LETTERS

Hey FUSE Hey guys pretty nice mag. Looking at the sports article, I know there are a lot of gay sports teams out and about in Canberra. Can we have say a section reporting on what sports etc are around, maybe teams needing players. Maybe we can get some good sporting shots too. John Sounds like a good idea John. We are on it buddy! Hi FUSE Love the new issue FUSE! The Glee interview especially impressed me! FUSE magazine is just going from strength to strength I think — can’t wait for more! Dave Hi Guys Just wanted to say a big, congrats on FUSE magazine. You should be really proud of yourselves. The magazine is a big hit! It’s about time someone in Canberra invested time and energy into a high quality gay publication for the local community. Sam Hi FUSE I just read FUSE for the first time — what a great mag!  Was very pleased to find out about the upcoming Bentfest at the Arc Cinema, can’t wait. Madeline Dear FUSE Just thought I would send you a quick email and say how much I enjoy FUSE Magazine. Cheers Matt!

FREE XMAS

MOVIE TICKETS! Write in! The best letter each month receives a double pass to Dendy in Canberra. Email your lettter to the editor at: hello@fusemagazine.com.au


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FUSE 5


What’s On

at the movies

Where the Wild Things Are : Opens 3 December

Innovative Director, Spike Jonze collaborates with celebrated Author, Maurice Sendak to bring one of the most beloved books of all time to the big screen in Where the Wild Things Are, a classic story about childhood and the places we go to figure out the world we live in. The film tells the story of Max, a rambunctious and sensitive boy who feels misunderstood at home and escapes to where the Wild Things are. Max lands on an island where he meets mysterious and strange creatures whose emotions are as wild and unpredictable as their actions.

Avatar : Opens 17 December The Avatar trailer looks awesome, really awesome. Avatar from Academy Award-winning Titanic Director James Cameron, takes us to a spectacular new world, Pandora — a place beyond our imagination. A reluctant hero, played by Terminator: Salvation’s Sam Worthington, embarks on a fantastic journey of redemption and discovery, as he leads a heroic battle to save a civilization from mankind. The film was first conceived by Cameron 14 years ago, when the means to realise his vision did not yet exist. Now, after four years of actual production work, Avatar delivers a fully immersive cinematic experience of a new kind, where the revolutionary technology invented to make the film, disappears into the emotion of the characters and the sweep of the story. I for one can’t wait until the 17th of December. If you have not seen the trailer yet it’s at: www.apple.com/trailers/fox/avatar/

The Wild Things desperately long for a leader to guide them, just as Max longs for a kingdom to rule. When Max is crowned king, he promises to create a place where everyone will be happy. Max soon finds, though, that ruling his kingdom is not so easy and his relationships there prove to be more complicated than he originally thought.

Nowhere Boy Opens 26 December

The Lovely Bones Opens 26 December Based on the critically acclaimed best-selling novel by Alice Sebold, and directed by Oscar® winner Peter Jackson from a screenplay by Fran Walsh, Philippa Boyens and Jackson, The Lovely Bones centers on a young girl who has been murdered and watches over her family ­— and her killer — from heaven. She must weigh her desire for vengeance against her desire for her family to heal.

A lonely teenager, curious and sharp, growing up in the shattered city of Liverpool. Two incredible women clash for his love. Mimi, the formidable aunt who raised him and Julia, the spirited mother who gave him up. Yearning for a normal family, John escapes into music. His fledgling genius finds a kindred spirit in the young Paul McCartney. But just as John’s new life begins, the truth about his past leads to a tragedy he would never escape. Poignant and powerful, the untold story of the boy who created The Beatles.

FREE TICKETS: FUSE has double passes to give away to Dendy Theatre in Canberra.

Write in and tell us what you think of FUSE, comment on an article or sign up for FUSE EXTRA! and you could win these great Dendy movie tickets • email: hello@fusemagazine.com.au • www.fusemagazine.com.au

Free movie passes were kindly supplied by Dendy Cinemas Canberra Level 2, North Quarter Canberra Centre, Bunda Street, Canberra City

www.dendy.com.au

FUSE 6


WHAT’S ON

Presents

A gay boy’s Midsummer Night’s Dream Were the World Mine ~ Friday 25 September An acclaimed lesbian classic! High Art ~ Friday 16 October

What’s On December CUBE New Year’s Party 31 December 2009 CUBE is having a Ghetto Fabulous New Year’s Eve party. Referring to the style of newly rich people who have grown up in ghetto or urban communities. A combination of bad taste, an urban appearance and a desire to wear one’s wealth. Featuring the original high rollaz DJs Matt Chavasse & Peter Dorree. More info p28. CUBE : 33 Petrie Plaza Civic, Canberra City

{

Check out fusemagazine.com.au for a full list of what’s happening in Canberra including local and national GLBTQ events

Lyrebird and Cascades Trail at Tidbinbilla Sunday 13 December 2009 Come along with ACTOUT for a beautiful walk to escape the Summer heat as you pass in and out of moist fern gullies and wet forests to meet a cool cascading mountain stream. Distance 3.8km. Refreshments afterwards at the Moon Rock Café at Canberra Deep Space Complex. For more info email Mark mark@actout.cjb.net

CELEBRATION New Year’s Party From 8pm 31 December 2009 An all-inclusive, fabulously exclusive, wonderfully private celebration at The Harbour Terrace Rooftop, Circular Quay, Sydney. More info p49.

HUSH New Year’s Party 31 December 2009 HUSH Lounge is pumping up the foam machine for a wet ‘n’ wild foam party. Guest DJS, wet T-Shirt and Jock competition and much more! More info p30.

REGULAR QUEER EVENTS!

HUSH : Corner of Launceston & Irving Streets Phillip

Saturdays Q Radio 7pm – 9pm 2XX, 98.3FM Canberra’s own GLBTQ radio show. RAW FM 87.6 : Girl Thing Wednesdays & Sundays from 7pm For girls who like girls. Presented by Tori Mac, an hour of sexy house and electro served up girly style. Hang Out with Canberra Bears Sunday arvos at O’Neill’s Irish Pub, Woolley St, Dickson on the first Sunday of the month 3pm. Bears Dinners: third Friday of the month. Tuesdays Dyke Dinner & Movie More info on FUSE website or see Canberra Lesbians on Facebook.

Mondays Gay & Lesbian Tennis 6pm – 9pm. Turner Tennis Club, Cnr McCaughey and Condamine Streets. Bring a tennis racquet, sports shoes and $5. Wednesdays Gay & Lesbian Squash 6.30pm – 7.30pm. National Sports Club, Mouat Street Lyneham. Bent Lenses Canberra’s very own Queer screen culture group. www.bentlenses.org ACTOUT ACTOUT is an informal outdoorsie activities group for Canberra’s gay and lesbian community. More details on the FUSE website.

Bit Bent : Canberra Youth Group A great place to meet other young people, get support or just hang out. Mondays at Uturn in Belconnen 6pm to 8pm & Thursdays at the Woden Youth Centre 5pm to 6.30pm.

HANGOUTS Cube Nightclub Canberra’s gay night club. p28. The Hush Lounge A chilled out GLBTQ bar. p30. Tilley’s Devine Cafe Legendary and sumptuous! p35. Bar32 : www.bar32.com Alternative gay friendly bar.

FUSE 7


THE TRAP THE TRAP

{By Brooklyn Hulands — Journalist

WET DREAMS

BRITNEY’S REALITY

HOT NIGHTMARES

Ok, I admit it, summer turns me into a bad person.

For an organisation that’s fuelled its websites with Britney news for a decade, Rupert Murdoch’s empire really stabbed the pop princess in the back during her trip Down Under.

When you’re packing your bags and heading anywhere but Canberra this Christmas, spare a thought for those left behind to house sit the nation’s capital.

It was Murdoch’s ‘Perth Now’ website that first reported fans had walked out of her concert — outraged that songs were being played off a CD.

It can be a lonely place over those few summer weeks. All public service institutions shut down, the temperature hits boiling point and the clubs become more deserted than K-Fed’s post-Britney Australian tour.

Every morning I drive past one of those signs showing how fast Canberra is running out of water. I try to help out (my pile of washing never seems to shrink), but really I’m still holding onto the dream of stripping to my undies and running around in the sprinklers again. The Government must have some good childhood memories too — it’s trying to expand Canberra’s reserve of water at Cotter Dam from 4,000 swimming pools to 78,000. According to current estimates, the project will cost us $363 million. ACTEW says that’s value for money. But not everyone’s convinced. The ACT’s competition watchdog has been brought in to investigate why the government owned corporation originally quoted the project about a quarter of a billion dollars cheaper. If a Harvey Norman salesman convinced you to buy an $1,100 plasma, then charged you $3,600 at the checkout, would you cough up? Lots of taxpayer money will have to pay for any extra water storage and we need to trust our politicians to spend it wisely. It’s an issue we’ll have to think long and hard about if we ever want to get wet in our front-yards again.

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Americans couldn’t believe we actually expected her to sing live. John Mayer wrote on Twitter: ‘If you’re shocked that Britney was lip-syncing at her concert and want your money back, life may continue to be hard for you.’ Canberra missed out on Britney, but we did get Pink — who can run, dance and swing on a trapeze, all while belting out of tune. It’s easy to see why Australia may have expected more. But it’s crazy to think anyone who paid $100+ to see Britney Spears would walk out on her. Spending money to see the world’s trashiest pop star removes the right to be a music critic, and any true fan accepts it. The “controversy” (including a front page story telling how the lip-syncing could be disclosed on all concert tickets) really was an embarrassment for the country that’s given Britney five #1’s (two more than the US). The Circus tour was her first to reach Australia — let’s hope it’s not the last.

If you’re not on the coast, you’re only jealous that one of your mates is. The best of us reminisce about that great New Year’s in Tathra, the worst about the one at Broulee. For the children, Monica from Playschool will help light the official Canberra Christmas tree this month, while New Year’s in Civic will give anyone born after 1992 the chance to legally experience Canberra’s night life. What a hoot! We’ll also be watching closely to make sure blue green alga doesn’t make a reappearance in our lakes and rivers. Kambah Pool just couldn’t handle any more bad publicity. But of course, there are burn-out competitions at Summernats and all that religious stuff to enjoy — I’m just assuming the copy of Fuse in your hands means it’s not quite up your alley.


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FEATURE

You may have seen Keith at Fairday this year and noticed that, hey — he’s that cute guy from The Librarians! Porcelain by Chay Yew explores the isolation of a double minority — a gay Asian in a Caucasian society. Keith plays the protagonist, John Lee, who channels rage, feelings of hopelessness and isolation, leading him to the murder of his white boyfriend in a public beat. Porcelain highlights the not-so-subtle racism of the gay community. It’s gritty stuff and Keith plays his part with exceptional skill and intensity which is sometimes all a bit too believable. It’s a confronting but poignant play. We asked Keith if he thought that all Asian men have the same issues as John did in Porcelain and were there things we could learn from him.

Keith Brockett

THEATRE’S MADE ME HER BITCH If you’ve seen Keith in either ABC TV’s comedy drama The Librarians or in his recent play Porcelain, there is no doubting his exceptional acting credentials. We sat with Keith over lunch at the Street Theatre and had a bit of a chat. Keith remembers being at home watching Harrison Ford in Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom with great excitement when he was growing up in Malaysia. Turning to his dad, Keith said, ‘I want to be an archaeologist when I grow up, because that looks fun’. Keith’s dad said, ‘You know archaeologists don’t swing on vines, snap whips or save girls? They usually just sit around in the dirt, digging and dusting old things in the ground.’ ‘Oh OK, so what’s he doing so he can do that?’ ‘Harrison Ford is an actor.’ ‘Then I want to be an actor dad!’ That was the first time the thought occurred to Keith to be an actor. After first going to university and completing his engineering degree (the backup plan), Keith quickly headed off to the National Theatre Drama School in Melbourne. Since graduating Keith has been in numerous successful plays — many as gay characters, including John in Porcelain, which showed at The Midsumma festival in Melbourne and recently at The Street Theatre in Canberra.

FUSE 10

‘Theatre is my mistress, she has made me her bitch’

‘I think that there is a general stereotype that Asian Men are not very masculine. If you want a hero or a provider — go for a white guy! This is changing a bit however with Asian men recently playing leading roles, which are sexy, masculine and heroic characters. Great examples are John Cho in Flash Forward and Star Trek; and Ken Leung in Lost and X-Men — all really talented guys.’ ‘John is so young in Porcelain and it’s always your first love that’s super intense. Like John, you’ll always have rough patches. There is no life that will have a story book ending. It’s good to learn how to deal with this stuff and know that it’s not always about you, and it’s not always your fault. Sometimes things just don’t work out.’ ‘As an actor you go to a thousand auditions and you get one call back and you might not even get that job. To be rejected that many times is painful and you start thinking, is it the way I look? Should I start working out? Should I lose weight? What did I do wrong? It can be tough, especially if you don’t have support like I do.’ On the lighter side, Keith clearly has comedy skills as well and I was keen to know what he thought about playing gay boy Ky in The Librarians. ‘Oh I love it! Ky is so much fun to play and such a bubbly, light character. Like me, Ky is generally a very positive and optimistic person — I like that about him.’ ‘In season two you get to meet Ky’s BF, Darren. Actually you got a sneak peak of him in the last episode of season one — there is a tiny little snapshot of Darren Mk1 at the party. Darren Mk2 is played by a different actor with blonde curly hair and is all ties and shirts. I actually thought season one Darren was hotter. Ky and Darren have a lovely little mixed relationship and you get to see their first on-screen kiss. Everyone was all excited about that.’ I’m sure we’ll see Keith on TV (we are all hoping for a season three of The Librarians) and on the stage a lot in the future, so keep your eyes peeled — his ability to make you laugh or cry at will, will no doubt make him an actor to keep a lookout for.

{By Alexander Thatcher


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FUSE 11


FEATURE

Sainthood by Tegan and Sara Prolific musicians, Tegan and Sara Quin have just released their much awaited sixth album, Sainthood. They’ve been around a long time: most lesbians know them and their music but they are not just makers of power-pop chick music. Their originality and longevity in the industry has seen their fanbase diversify and expand, especially with their last album, The Con — even to straight men.

{By Carmen Sarjeant

‘Arrow’ by Sara and ‘Don’t Rush’ by Tegan as introductions, make it difficult to love this album immediately. After a few times I realised these songs are brilliant. The obvious hits and replay songs rest in the middle: ‘Hell’, ‘On Directing’, ‘Red Belt’ and ‘The Cure’. Actually, the whole album is a little unusual but I like that ‘Alligator’ isn’t just an odd title. Sainthood also features their first co-written song, ‘Paperback Head’. In case you didn’t know, Tegan and Sara are twins — lesbian twins — from Canada. These are the basic facts by which the media often defines them. They have inspired a new style for young lesbians (see 20-ish copycat examples on Oxford Street, Sydney). In their spare time they protest Prop 8, video hilarious blogs for their devoted fans and publicise emerging musicians as veterans of the indie music scene alongside other Canadian greats like Metric and Stars.

Tegan and Sara are twins — lesbian twins

Like a lot of non-mainstream pop music that I come to really love with more plays, Tegan and Sara’s music always takes a while to really get in to. The exception on Sainthood is ‘Hell’, the first single (which has probably aired on Triple J by now), which got into my head after the first verse and I found myself singing away before the song was over and before I was even sure I liked it. So when I listened to the full album, I was surprised to find unusual and risky choices for tracks one and two.

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They say they always write about love but I think there’s more going on in this effort to accompany their experimental, electronic, post-punk and pop mix-up compositions. They’ve grown up and their lyrics are well-crafted, while still holding onto their strengths by conversing about how they feel immature and vulnerable when it comes to love — so relatable, so human. Even though music magazines and websites like Under the Radar, www.spinner.com and www.stereogum.com will be making a fuss about their latest release, I don’t think Sainthood will get more than a glimpse from the mainstream and the likes of Rolling Stone. It will continue to confuse me how the masses overlook such catchy and honest tunes.


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FUSE 13


NEWS GOSSIP & STUFF

{

THE XMAS BUZZ *

By Tony Hamlyn

Ding dong merrily on high, indeed! Christmas is nearly here, and if you haven’t yet decided what to get for your special lesbian or gay someone, have I got gift ideas for you as well as my usual buzz!

A VERY ROBBIE XMAS

A VERY BARBIE XMAS

It’s all about Robbie right now.

And for boys and girls and girly boys alike, Mattel has a new line of Barbie coming out just in time for the holiday season.

Gays love him, straights love him, and everything in between seems to see something special in the tall, handsome, self-deprecating superstar with his heart on his sleeve and a bulge in his pants. If someone is asking you, ‘What do you want for Christmas?’ believe me when I tell you the answer should be Robbie. The brand new album, Reality Killed The Radio Star, is a tremendous piece of pop-rock with gorgeous strings and quirky bits’n’bobs (a technical term) thanks to the genius that is legendary producer, Trevor Horn and of course the wonderment that is Mr Williams himself. His performance at the ARIAs and his recent Aussie promo tour led to a Robbie renaissance in this country and deservedly so. One of the strangest, yet most exciting concert experiences I’ve ever had was at Dendy recently, with the limited screening of the Robbie Williams BBC Electric Proms gig for two nights only across the entire country. Those who went along got to see him perform some of his new stuff, plus a few oldies, with his band and a thirty-piece orchestra swelling behind him. Tracks like ‘Millennium’ and ‘Angels’ have really never sounded so astounding, let me tell you. It was like being at your very own mini-concert, with audience members forgetting they were in a movie theatre, clapping and cheering and singing along as though we were all there in person. Robbie and I have had a love/hate relationship for a long time now. Whilst I love what he does in the studio, I am essentially a Take That fan, so I cannot abide by any of the rubbish he’s had to say on that subject, or whatever rubbish once sprouted from his fowl mouth during interviews. But all that is now null and void of course, and Rob has made nice with the other four Take That boys, going to football matches and hanging out in LA studios with the band. Rumours have been running rife that a reunion is in the works, which all parties have constantly denied. But with the Children In Need charity concert being organised by none other than Gary Barlow, and with Take That and Robbie both set to perform separately, fans are waiting with bated breath for a likely joint number. Fingers and toes crossed for that one!

FUSE 14

It’s the Ladies of the 80s line with Debbie Harry, Joan Jett and Cyndi Lauper all in authentic rock chick hair and costume. The Debbie Harry doll has twotoned hair and she’s sporting a gorgeous hot-pink mini dress, a tip to the Plastic Letters album cover from 1977 which is quite fabulous if a little inconsistent time-wise. Joan Jett is head to toe in black, leather pants and Blackhearts T-shirt, with red converse and a feathered do. And Cyndi is based on her She’s So Unusual era, which not surprisingly looks a bit like anything you might see on Channel V of a Saturday morning. All three are as camp as they are collectable and perfect for the pop culture vulture in your gang. Amazon is selling them at $45 a pop which isn’t too much for a piece of iconic history really.


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PRO-GAY

MARRIAGE STANCE Remember the old days, when footballers either just wanted to beat you up or have anonymous sex with you in a darkened public restroom? Well now they want to speak out on our behalf.

A VERY LICKY CHRISTMAS One for the girls! How about tickets to the upcoming L-Word convention in Sydney? Yes, in case you’ve been living underneath a big nongay rock for the past few months, the gal pals from our favourite prime time dramedy are coming to Sydney for two and a half days of pure and utter fan worship. The line-up is amazing, with Rachel Shelley (lovely Helena), Laurel Holloman (flip-flopping Tina), Marlee Matlin (artisan Jody), Leisha Hailey (crazy Alice), Rose Rollins (don’t ask/don’t tell Tash), Janina Gavankar (hat wearing Papi), Anne Ramsay (Robin from early episodes), and Pam Grier (sisterly Kit) all confirmed. According to the website there will also be a ‘Mystery Guest’ who, my spies assure me, just might be Jennifer Beals (the long-suffering Bette), or Mia Kirshnir (hateful narcissistic Jenny) either of whom would be squeal-worthy.

AfterElton.com has reported on two NFL players (that’s gridiron for those of you, like me, who are sportschallenged) who made recent public announcements against the gay marriage ban, which is really, really hot and really courageous. Scott Fujita, who plays for the New Orleans Saints is obviously seeking canonisation himself in making a statement which urges people to realise, ‘t’s not a religion issue. It’s not a Government issue. It’s not even a gay/straight issue or a question of your manhood. It’s a human issue. And until more people see that, we’re stuck arguing with people who don’t have an argument.’ Curiously none of the footballers I went to school with ever spoke so simply and eloquently about human rights and equality. They were instead quite frank in calling me a poofter as they threw my Madonna pencil case around the PE change room and threatening to smash me during recess. But that was a long time before David Beckham, Industrie clothing and the metro-sexual phenomenon. Haven’t we all come a very long way, both politically and socially speaking?

Don’t expect this gift to come cheap though girls. Starting at $350, a General Admission ticket can get you entry, an autograph, a programme, and the ‘opportunity to purchase’ merchandise. For $400 you get all this plus reserved seating in the main arena over the two and a half days. Top of the line $450 Platinum tickets get you front row in the arena and an in to the exclusive meet and greet on the convention’s opening night. Platinum tickets are sold out but eBay might come up trumps if you’re so inclined to spend the big cashola. I’ve seen some dodgy comings and goings as far as TV conventions go, but I have to say that this one looks quite amazing. The website alone is well structured and the whole thing looks brilliantly organised. The only thing I’d look out for is the fine print at the bottom of the Terms & Conditions which states the organisers ‘reserves the right to make any changes to the event owing to unforseen or unavoidable circumstances’, followed by ‘Guests appear subject to work commitments’. This roughly translates to ‘any one of these actresses may not actually be there and bad luck if they’re not’. But with conventions it’s a risk you take, and I gotta say if this particular one only gets half the advertised talent, it still looks well worth the cost.

All jokes aside, imagine for a moment if just one of our nation’s sporting heroes — be it Ricky Ponting, or Casey Stoner, or Ian Thorpe — would actually stand up and say, ‘I’m not gay, but this blatant inequality is just bullshit!’ The affect on the nation’s psyche might just be revolutionary. And while yes, it’s quite noble to appear in a poster that says, ‘Say no to homophobia,’ like the NRL and more recently the Wallabies have done, it really is something altogether more significant to speak out about actual issues, like the gay marriage, ban and attempt to curb public opinion more profoundly the way these American footballers have done. And, if you’re wondering, yes — Scott Fujit is really hot! Google him now!

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XMAS OP.ED

TIPS FOR A STRESS-FREE XMAS

CHRISTMAS = FAMILY!? ‘Family’ is defined in many different ways.* For many people in the GLBTQI community, family has a different meaning. In the Private Lives Report (2006) it states, ‘GLBTI friends rated most highly for all groups; and higher in every case than their biological families (with the exception of intersex respondents where family and community friends were rated as equally or more important).’ Family is socially constructed and how it looks and functions has changed over time, in particular the ‘closing off’ of families to outside influences through permanent housing structures and the deconstruction of village/community style living. This means that the family unit is now considered to be the heteronormative ‘mum, dad and kids’. A lot of people fall outside of this, in particular in our community, and for many reasons such as phobias — families aren’t able to accept the sexuality of their relatives or may struggle with gender variations (such as transgender or genderqueer) which can make Christmas uncomfortable for everyone; distance is also a contributing factor in this age of the global village. For me, family has two meanings; my beautiful mother, my daughter and my granddaughter, though they are often not within my reach at Christmas time; and my GLBTQI family where I often find myself at Xmas ­— and even if I do get time with my biological family I will usually spend time with my community as well. Live it up this Christmas, have fun, be loving and accepting of difference and think about including those who may not have ‘family’ around. Merry Queer Christmas :-) *(For the multiple definitions of family, check this webpage out http://ardictionary.com/Family/562) Pitts, M., Smith, A., Mitchell, A., Patel, S. Private Lives, A report on the health and wellbeing of GLBTI Australians, 2006 Latrobe University.

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{By Debbie Tonkin

Here are some handy tips for keeping stress-free during the crazy time of year.

Embrace the predictability The one good thing about Xmas stress is that it’s so bloody predictable. Unlike other types of stress that we encounter in life, we know exactly when it will start and when it will finish. Everyone’s in the same boat. However it seems, don’t imagine for one minute that others are floating around stress-free, because it’s just not happening kids — that’s just a movie.

Replace the word SHOULD with COULD The word ‘should’ can bring you a lot of grief. We should visit Auntie Millie; we should buy gifts for everyone; we should have a tree; we should go to that party. Try changing should to you could then do what makes you happy and what you want to do. Doing things out of duty and expectation will probably not bring you happiness, but only build resentment.

Know your limits Starting early and planning will always help things to go more smoothly. Remember, not everything has to be done all at once (or at all) and if things starting getting on top of you, stop and reassess what you’re doing and why. If you’re not enjoying yourself, you probably should not be doing it.

Do something different If you need a change, feel down or just bored with the whole Xmas thing, then do something different! This is an opportunity to do something that you haven’t before instead of just hating another Xmas. Christopher and I once flew out to Mexico on Xmas day — the flight was almost empty, we were treated like kings (queens) and it was not stressful. If you still have family obligations why not visit them Xmas Eve instead and spend the 25th with friends or your partner on the beach.

Just say NO! If you often wind up with too many activities and obligations and find yourself flapping because you don’t have enough time for your own things ­— just say no! Don’t feel you have to agree to everything. After all, the holidays are about relaxing with your family, friends and loved ones.

{By Alexander Thatcher


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GAY S N O IC

FEATURE

{By Glen Rodden

Google the words ‘gay icon’ and you’ll find out just how many people we seem to have given the title over the years — from poets to politicians, stylists to singers. Qualities of a gay icon may include glamour, flamboyance, fame, looks, talent and activism. Historical icons, it seems, are generally promoted to their positions because their sexual orientation is often debatable. Entertainers have become the predominant modern gay icons and have acquired their following through their careers and lives in the spotlight. The earliest gay icon in recorded history was Saint Sebastian (died c. 288). This probably has something to do with hundreds of images of Sebastian’s muscular physique, arrows penetrating his naked body and the rapturous look on the man’s face. Marie Antoinette is an early lesbian icon. Rumours about her relationships with women were circulated in pornographic detail via anti-royalist pamphlets before the French Revolution, and biographers romanticised her friendship with the Princesse de Lamballe. In the 1930s, a number of writers, political activists and celebrities took on roles as gay icons. Lucille Ball was adored by gay men. Bette Davis’ portrayal of Judith Traherne in Dark Victory made her another symbol. Other icons from this period include actor Cary Grant and gay actor and composer, Noel Coward. It is argued that Judy Garland (1922-1969), is the most famous gay icon of the 50s/60s. Her portrayal of Dorothy in the movie The Wizard of Oz even spawned a “code” identity term for homosexuals in the 1950s, with ‘friend of Dorothy’ meaning ‘gay’. Garland’s daughter, Liza Minnelli would later follow in her mother’s footsteps as a gay icon, as would fellow musical artist Barbra Streisand. Joan Crawford has been depicted as the “ultimate gay icon”, the martyr who suffered for her art and appealed to gay men because they sympathised with her struggle for success. A notable film star during the 1930s and 1940s, it was not until her 1953 camp-fest film, Torch Song that she was penned as an icon. Other icons from this time include Liberace, Julie Andrews, Shirley Bassey, Debbie Reynolds, Barbara Cook, Marilyn Monroe, Rock Hudson and Elizabeth Taylor. The 1970s saw the rise of the underground gay disco scene and the prominent gay icon was the “Queen of Disco”, Donna Summer, whose dance songs became anthems. Another fellow disco singer, Gloria Gaynor was embraced by the gay community because of her single ‘I Will Survive’, later followed by Diana Ross, Grace Jones, Elaine Paige and Dolly Parton. Singer Freddie Mercury of Queen also became a popular icon, as did bisexual musician, David Bowie. Elton John trailed and became an icon in his own right during the 70s, and his status was strengthened during the 90s. Singer and actress, Bette Midler also became a gay icon in the 70s. She performed at the Continental Baths (a gay bathhouse), after performing on Broadway, where she became close to her (rumoured to be gay) piano accompanist, Barry Manilow, who then produced her first major album, The Divine Miss M (1973).

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Singer and actress, Cher became notable in the gay community not only for her music, but for receiving an Academy Award nomination for her portrayal of a lesbian in the movie Silkwood. Later, her daughter, Chastity Bono, would come out as a lesbian at the age of seventeen, much to Cher’s feelings of ‘guilt, fear and pain’. When Cher was able to accept her daughter’s lesbianism, she realised that Chastity, as a lesbian, didn’t have the same rights as everyone else and she has since emerged as a role model for straight parents who have LGBT children.


The “Queen of Pop”, Madonna, became the prominent gay icon of the late twentieth century. Madonna has always been aware that her most loyal fans are gay men and has also been open about her bisexuality. Cyndi Lauper, who has a lesbian sister, also generated a large following of LGBT fans in the 80s, especially with her camp anthem, ‘Girls Just Want to Have Fun’. According to a study by Yale University, Oprah Winfrey did more to make gays mainstream than any other development of the 20th century. Her career popularised the tabloid talk-show genre — an intimate confessional communication style which changed the cultural landscape. Fellow talk show host, Ellen DeGeneres would eventually cast Oprah to play the therapist she comes out of the closet to on the controversial episode of the Ellen sitcom. Other icons from this decade include Estelle Getty, Joan Collins, Annie Lennox, Boy George, George Michael and Kylie Minogue. During the 90s towards 2000, Janet Jackson became a gay icon, with her album, The Velvet Rope, being honoured by the National Black Lesbian and Gay Leadership Forum and receiving an award for its songs that dealt with sexual orientation and homophobia. People such as Ellen DeGeneres, Elton John, Neil Patrick Harris, KD Lang, Rosie O’Donnell, and T.R. Knight became gay icons after being open about their sexual orientation. Now in the late 2000s, several entertainers have been dubbed as members of a new generation of gay icons. These include Tori Amos, Lance Bass, Mariah Carey, Margaret Cho, Lady Gaga, Paris Hilton, La Toya Jackson, gay singer Kent James, Sarah Jessica Parker, Britney Spears, George Takei (Sulu in the old Star Trek), and Rufus Wainwright. In the political arena, gay icons are represented by people such as Princess Diana, Abraham Lincoln, Winnie Mandela, Eva Peron, Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis and Imelda Marcos — think shoes! There are even some fictional characters that have been regarded as gay icons. For example Batman and Robin, Superman, Wonder Woman and the cross-dressing Bugs Bunny have all become gay icons. Bewitched obtained a LGBT cult following in the 1960s and even starred two gay cast members, Dick Sargent and Paul Lynde. Other fictional characters include: Tin Tin, Noddy, Willow (Buffy the Vampire Slayer), Bert and Ernie (Sesame Street), Pattie and Selma (The Simpsons), Stewie (Family Guy), and John Barrowman who plays Captain Jack in BBC’s Torchwood. Commentators have criticised the definition of what it means to be a “gay icon” in recent years for its lack of substance. In the past it was aligned more to activism, politics and overcoming adversity. Now the concept of gay iconography has been said to be replaced with the idea of popularity and the ability to carry a strong, identifiable, signature look or brand. When I recently asked random Canberran LGBT community members who their icons were, I was quite surprised with the responses I received: Matthew Mitcham; Meredith Turnbull (Former EO of the Twenty10 LGBT Youth Service); Dorothy Mc-Rae-McMahon (Uniting Church Minister), who stood up and was accepted in high powered religious circles for who she is and what she does, not her sexuality; Peter Trebelico (a founder of the Gay and Lesbian Counselling Service and a 78er); and Stevie Clayton (Former CEO of ACON). Other local gay icons mentioned were Richard Allen (Rachel) for his constant efforts and big heart; our Member of the ACT Legislative Assembly, Andrew Barr; Sylvie (2XX DJ and former manager of Heaven Nightclub); Morris (Cube Nightclub); and so many, many other important entertainers and prominent community members. Overall it seems that almost anyone can be a gay icon — even you! It may take hard work, glamour, wealth, fame, looks or infamy — or maybe just being yourself could be enough.

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Simply

Irresistible Season 2010 at ‘The Q’ – Queanbeyan Performing Arts Centre

Subscribe and save

Subscribe by January 31 for chance to win a Melbourne weekend getaway for two to see the hit musical – The Jersey Boys. Email stephen.pike@qcc.nsw.gov.au to receive your copy of the comprehensive season brochure. Further info: 6298 0290 or www.theq.net.au

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FABULOUS THINGS

A few Xmas shopping tips • • • • •

Make a list of all the gifts you want to buy before you go shopping. If you wait for inspiration to strike, you could be wandering aimlessly for hours. Buy a few extras, like chocolates, just in case you forget somebody or people drop by. Do your Christmas shopping early before it’s hell out there — do it now! Buy gifts over the Internet. Some sites will even gift-wrap and mail for you! Send gifts from a Christmas-related chairty program or humanitarian organisation.

FABULOUS BENDY HD WEBCAM

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We know you’ll want one — we do! The world of web has never wilted when it comes to designing fun gadgets that you can play with at home. The Clique Hue DH is perfect for those that prefer to socialise indoors over the holiday season or just play around. It’s the funky web cam that can be twisted and turned at every angle. Shoot up; shoot down, to the side or from behind. Very useful we’re sure. The Clique Hue HD seems to be the most versatile webcam on the market, now it’s your turn! Perfect for boys and girls who love their Gaydar time.

MUSIC HALL TURNTABLE

Available online for $80.00 More info at www.huehd.com

If you want to treat your significant other (or your significant self) to something a bit extravagant this Xmas, then how about recreating some of the vibes of yester-year with a Music Hall turntable planted under your tree. There’s something very special about the natural, warm tones reproduced from vinyl — the process of taking an album out of its sleeve, gently placing it on the turntable platter and then carefully cueing the stylus by hand lets you appreciate the whole music listening experience with a richness often lost in our fast-paced turn-it-on-and-press-play world. The MMF2.2 is a two-speed (33 and 45rpm) belt drive model that comes pre-fitted with a tonearm and moving-magnet cartridge. It does away with some of the unnecessary bells and whistles of other turntables, focussing instead on accurate music reproduction and a very shiny finish. It’s available in brilliant Ferrari red (RRP $799) so it looks as stunning as it sounds — or you can save a hundred bucks and get the plain black model (RRP $699) instead, but it’s not nearly as funky! Head to Miranda HiFi in Petrie Plaza, Civic to check out the MMF2.2 and get some friendly expert advice for your audiophilic needs.

GIVEAWAY! SUBSCRIBE TO FUSE MAGAZINE

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Subscribe to FUSE this month and tell us why you love FUSE and you could win this designer lamp from our friends at electricfirefly.com.au — it’s worth $89. A six-month FUSE subscription is only $36. Subscribe online at fusemagazine.com.au


A PUPPY FROM THE RSPCA Planning on buying a puppy for Xmas? Why not adopt a dog from the RSCPA instead? All their beautiful animals have undergone vigorous health and temperament checks to ensure their suitability as pets. They deserve a second chance, so if you are considering purchasing a pet, please visit your local RSPCA shelter first and remember, a dog is a serious investment, so make sure you can afford the time and money.

THINGS LOVE SMOOTH BOYS! Rich, thick and creamy... Just the way we like it. eShave is perfect if you have sensitive skin or just want a shaving product that’s luxurious and beautiful to use on your skin. eShave Shaving Creams lather instantly which helps soften your hair and open your pores, therefore virtually eliminating shaving irritation. You get a close and comfortable shave. We used it and love it! The White Tea eShave Shaving Cream leaves your skin feeling moisturised and smooth after shaving. This product is really nice guys, you’ll love it. Get it online at www.grooming4men.com.au — eShave Shaving Cream White Tea 120g is only $36.00 and will last you ages. SHAVING TIP : Ideally shave after the shower or use a hot wet towel. The warm moisture of a shower makes hairs soft and plump and opens your pores. Use a sharp blade — discard shaving blades after four or five uses, old blades are bad news boys.

HELP SMOOTH OVER THOSE XMAS OVEREATING LOVE HANDLES! Australian brand Equmen have launched their men’s compression ‘shapewear’ clothing range. It’s designed to instantly improve how the shape of a man’s body looks and feels. They have classic compression singlets and of course underwear, that are engineered with seamless athletic technology and physiotherapist techniques for ergonomic results. A technology they call Helix-Mapping focuses on core body mechanics — optimising support, improving posture stability and slimming at the same time. Compression and enhancing clothing is becoming very popular in Australia, with brands popping up everywhere. It seems the fashion industry is squeezing and pushing our bodies ‘til we look just like the designers (and we) want. Equmen Ts and undershirts are available at www.equmen.com — prices range from $99 to $119 with the promise that they can reduce the stomach and love handle area. Below : Some are calling it the “mirdle’’ — as in men’s girdle. Not sure if this guy really needs one, but hey, who’s complaining.

DAZZLE XMAS TREES Store Xmas displays are usually pretty damn nice, often very sparkly and beautifully presented by those in the know. Well this year your house can look like a professional Xmas decorator has been in too.

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Freedom Furniture currently has these very stylish Xmas cones, come trees. Best thing as far as we are concerned is how simple, yet beautiful they are — unlike those plastic trees that take forever to put away, in April or May... All you need to do is unwrap them, switch the lights on and add your prezzies — voila, Santa will be blown away! Available at Freedom 100cm Dazzle Tree $49.95 80cm Dazzle Tree $39.95

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WHAT’S ON GROOMING

It is the season of too much drinking, too much eating and not enough dancing. So let’s get ready to party.

Style it Up! THE DOS AND THE DON’ TS

THE DOS!

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By Chad Wijayatilake from Form Haircutters

DO have your hair cut regularly. Do not keep pushing it out till it’s Christmas and all the hair salons are closed for the holidays. Make sure you have your colour and cut done before all the parties begin. No outfit will compliment two inches of regrowth and split ends. DO buy your self a pair of GHD styling irons IMMEDIATELY or ask someone to get you a pair for Christmas this year. If you haven’t got a pair of GHDs by now you really have let yourself go. Even if you have short hair, GHDs are great for creating smooth sleek looks as well as curls. GHDs come in a variety of sizes: small, medium and large to suit your personal needs. The small one is great for guys and girls with shorter hair, the large ones are perfect for people with really thick hair and the medium stylers are just a good allrounder. Everyone should have a pair of GHDs in their bathroom by the end of 2009.

To me there’s nothing hotter than seeing a guy in a blazer and skinny leg jeans or a party girl in a hot cocktail dress, but sadly, often the hair is not right for the outfit. There’s nothing worse than seeing too much product in the hair or an over grown hair cut. So here are some dos and don’ts for the party season.

THE DON’TS! DON’T copy your friend’s or your partner’s haircut. Not only will you look the same but end up hating each other, trying to figure out who had the look first. DON’T give up on styling your hair; if you can’t get the right look with your hair style, ask your stylist for step-by-step instructions on how you can get the look at home. The night you don’t bother to do your hair could be the night you meet someone special. DON’T do half up, half down. If you’re a girl and like to have your hair up, try not to do a half up, half down look. Just decide on one or the other and go for it! Having a pair of GHDs will really help create some great up styles and also create movement in the hair.

DO something new with your hair for the summer and try a new hair colour or maybe even a new style. I find summer is a great time to go lighter or maybe even to cut your hair short. Plus you’ll be the centre of attention at all the parties with your new do.

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Come get your GHD Precious Christmas gift pack (limited edition), available at Form while stocks last; Includes a black and silver GHD IV styler, travel hair dryer and roll bag to carry your precious GHDs in. Love it!


CREATOR OF MASTERPIECES Master Craftsman

Jewellery Designer

Diamond Setter

www.intriguephotography.com.au

Handcrafted solid 18 carat white gold half round band with a rare magnificent 1.30 carats half moon cut Paraiba Tourmaline in a bezel setting of 18 carat white gold, and twelve small brilliant cut diamonds pave’ set onto a half moon shaped 18 carat white gold piece. The diamonds are all colour G, VS in clarity, totaling in weight 0.18 carats.

88 - 96 Bunda Street

Lower Ground Floor City Executive Suites Canberra

02 6262 5053

www.aharoni-jewellery.com FUSE 25


WHAT’S ON GROOMING

Handy r e m m u S e r a C n i Sk s p i T l a v i Surv

The arrival of summer and the warmer weather means you’ll want to spend more time outdoors in the sun. Whether you’ll be playing sports, walking, gardening or just lounging by the pool or on the beach, caring for your skin and using the appropriate skin products can help prevent skin conditions and sun damage. To help you out this summer we’ve put together some handy skin survival tips!

Problem No 4 : Flushed, Red Face

The summer sun is much stronger than you may think. If you are going to be exposed to the sun, always wear a broadspectrum sunscreen. Remember, sunburn can cause cancer. However if you do get burnt, take cool showers and keep skin well moisturised. It is also recommended to avoid oily products at first, as these can trap the heat.

Overheating is a problem for anyone suffering from a red, flushed complexion or the skin disorder rosacea. In warmer weather, it is also particularly important to avoid large meals, hot spicy foods and to minimise alcohol.

Quick fix: Use a mineral make-up to tone down redness, pure minerals provide good coverage without irritating the skin.

Problem No 2 : Dry, Dehydrated Skin Summer is the party season, but don’t forget that warm weather and/or alcohol dehydrates the skin. Apart from moisturising regularly, do your skin a favour by drinking plenty of water and also exfoliating your skin regularly, which will improve the skin’s ability to absorb moisturising products. Tip: Swap to a lightweight moisturiser. When it’s hot and humid, heavy creams can block pores, leading to acne, which is very difficult to treat in those with dry skin. Quick fix: Smooth a few drops of pure rosehip oil over the entire face before applying make-up.

Problem No 3 : Oily Skin and Breakouts Keeping cool is important in preventing oily skin and breakouts. Pores and sweat glands in the skin help regulate body temperature, so when it’s warmer, pores open to release perspiration to cool us down and oil glands do the same, which may spell disaster for those with oily skin. Tip: Don’t over cleanse: This will only strip the skin of oils it needs to stay hydrated, making it produce more and exacerbating the problem. Quick fix: Carry a pack of cosmetic blotting papers to mop up shine. 26

Logan Smith Skin Care Consultant Priceline Pharmacy Woden

Problem No 1 : Sunburn

Tip: Hydrating gels help initially, and then richer creams will help reduce peeling afterwards.

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Tip: Use soothing, calming skincare products with ingredients such as propolis. Quick fix: Carry a mineral spritz spray to cool the face as often as necessary throughout the day.

Problem No 5 : Pigmentation Pigmentation problems can be caused by hormonal factors (such as the contraceptive pill or pregnancy) or sun exposure. If your problem is hormonal, speak with your GP about options. While pigmentation may be reduced with fading creams or peels, it will return the moment you go back into the sun without protection. So always apply sunscreen. Remember to Slip, Slop, Slap! Tip: Use sun protection plus ingredients that help prevent pigmentation such as vitamin C. Quick fix: Use a light, tinted moisturiser as a base and even out pigmentation with concealer.

ANTI AGING SKIN CARE To help stop your skin aging, eat fruits and vegetables and other antioxidant rich foods such as: broccoli, fish, nuts, asparagus and celery. Antioxidants help to stave off free radical activities which damage skin cells. With an antioxidant rich diet you can help to keep your skin’s cells healthy for longer.


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OUT & ABOUT

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Ghett0 33 Petrie Plaza Civic, Canberra City www.cubenightclub.com.au

GHETTO FABULOUS IS: Referring to the style of newly rich people who have grown up in ghetto or urban communities. A combination of bad taste, an urban appearance and a desire to wear one’s wealth. BASICALLY: HIGHLY PRICED BUT TACKY CLOTHING AND ACCESSORIES.

GHETTO FABULOUS @ CUBE IS: Referring to a New Year’s Eve theme party like no other. A night of hoochie mamas and playa playas, bling bling, tracksuit hoodies, weaves, grills, swooshy kappa pants, tacky Guess bags and everything else hot in the hood…. SO COME ON YO, LEAVE YOUR BABY DADDY AT HOME AND GET AMONGST IT ALL UP IN THIS.

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NEW YEARS EVE AT CUBE NIGHTCLUB DECEMBER 31ST FROM 10PM!

FEATURING: The original high rollaz DJs Matt Chavasse & Peter Dorree Take a break from the everyday and learn to play the gay way @ Cube Nightclub!


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OUT & ABOUT

THE

Corner of Launceston & Irving Streets Phillip www.hushlounge.com.au • 02 6282 1944

HUSHLOUNGE

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MERRY MERRY XMAS!

THE HUSH LOUNGE would like to wish you all a very, very happy Xmas and an awesome new year. We have some great nights and entertainment coming up this month to put great big smiles on your faces, including Legless, Tori Mac and of course our Foam New Years Eve party — not to be missed! Be safe, take it easy and if you’re going away, drive carefully — better there late than never! Remember HUSH is an ideal venue for your next party, function or celebration of any kind. HUSH is a unique and stylish lounge bar with a relaxed party feel about it and a great sound system to support your own music or even a live band! With a fully stocked bar, an outdoor beer garden and excellent catering options available, your next function or celebration will be talked about long after the night has ended. If your requirements are for a themed party, Christmas party, cocktail party, wedding, 21st or any excuse to have a get together, we are your people. HUSH can be booked out for a CLOSED PRIVATE function. See management for more details.

LEGLESS

SATURDAY 12 DECEMBER

WHAT’S ON!

After a long awaited return to HUSH the hit band Legless will be back this month. Supported by ICON Unplugged it’s going to be a great night for everyone. Tickets on sale now: $20pre-sale/$25 door Show starts @ 7pm, Doors open from 5pm.

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TORI MAC

SATURDAY 19 DECEMBER One of Canberra’s hotest DJs Tori Mac will turn the HUSH LOUNGE into the LUSH LOUNGE. Don’t miss this, the night will be full of great surprises for everyone. Entry fee only $10 at the door.

NEW YEARS FOAM PARTY

THURSDAY 31 DECEMBER 2009 This will be our biggest party this year! It’s the HUSH wet ‘n’ wild FOAM PARTY. Guest DJs, wet T-Shirt ‘n’ Jock comps + more! Tickets $20 presale or $25 at the door. OPENING HOURS : Tuesday — Thursday 5pm to 11pm : Friday — Saturday 5pm to 1am : Sunday 1pm to 8pm


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WHAT’S ON TOP QUEER

BREAKING DOWN MAY NOT LOOK THIS GOOD! So it’s time to load up the car and head off on that well earned break or maybe you’re getting ready to visit Auntie Millie for Xmas — you know, the family member who still can’t understand why you’re not married yet. Before you set out however, you need to give some thought to your trusty velocipede, so you don’t end up stranded in the middle of nowhere, like this guy. Now if your destination is around the corner that’s one thing, but if the road trip stretches to somewhere out of town there are a few steps you might want to take to ensure your happy safe arrival. Your biggest priority might be whether the stereo is sounding good, your iPod is connecting or the aircon is working well — However, I know it’s terribly boring but we also need to consider tyres, brakes and engine as well before setting off over the border. Now if you don’t know a thing about your car, get some help. Use a competent butch friend or take your pride and joy to a mechanic. Most mechanics will do a safety inspection for free. If you are at all concerned about your brakes have them checked by an expert. ACT Brakes do a free brake inspection. It’s a bit late to find out that your brakes aren’t working when you are halfway down the Clyde with limited escape options and a roof rack full of crap. Also remember that between now and Christmas most mechanics will get very busy, so don’t leave repairs until the last minute. Lack of planning on your part may not constitute an emergency for your mechanic! Be mindful that most of the motor trade closes from Christmas Eve through to mid-January, so if you run into a problem during this period the drama will surely be compounded by closed workshops and warehouses. So what can an ignoramus do themselves? Check your tyres. Tread should be enough to cover a match head when you poke a match into the grooves — all the way across the tyre too. Tyres should wear evenly.

AUNT DOROTHY’S

MOTORING TIP Please don’t drink and drive during the festi season. We want all our readers back safely in the new year. Oh and when the policeman says blow in this, you can keep your trousers on! Remember Auntie Dorothy loves you all! MWAH!

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{

By Stuart Poole Stuart has been a car enthusiast as long as he can remember and greased up more moving parts than one can possibly imagine.

Uneven wear indicates issues that need sorting before you head off on your journey. Visually check and make sure there are no nicks or cuts in the side of the tyre, and if you feel confident check your tyre pressure. Most garages have automatic tyre inflation machines these days, so it’s just a case of looking up your pressure, dialing it up on the machine and hooking the nozzle onto the valve. Most car manufacturers slightly understate pressure to give the impression you are getting a smooth ride. You can be safe and your tyres will generally last longer if you go about 5 PSI (pounds per square inch) above the recommended pressure. Over inflated or under inflated tyres will wear quicker and won’t be as safe as well maintained tyres. Your recommended tyre pressure will be written in the handbook or on a sticker in the driver’s door aperture or glove box lid. Check your oil and water and top up both as required. Your handbook that came with the car should have instructions on this, or you can email me at festistu@hotmail.com if you need some pointers. Do not over fill either of them. Your engine only needs about 4-5 litres of oil in the bottom of the engine. This should be measured with the dipstick. I have seen someone fill their car right to the top and it predictably blew up, costing them a fortune. It is also wise to top up your washer bottle and add some washer fluid to help wash those summer bugs away. Now we have the car sorted, you’re ready to go! Oh and don’t ask me for advice on what to say to Aunt Millie when she insists that you must use separate beds and attend midnight mass — I only know about car stuff!


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FOOTLIGHTS

e s u a p o n Me the Musical There have been several shows recently, such as The Vagina Monologues and Breast Wishes, with great appeal to women. But nothing has hit the spot quite so directly and so life affirming for women as Menopause the Musical. One report said of an audience of 600, only eight were men, but they thoroughly enjoyed the show too. Red Hat Society members have been regular attendees at the Q. Menopause the Musical comes to the Q Theatre in a refreshed production with a totally new cast. International Director, Patty Bounder has worked to make the show more aligned to the overseas productions, while keeping the Australian flavour. Four women meet by accident in a department store; Power Woman, Dubbo Housewife, Earth Mother and Soap Star. They quickly discover a bond in that they are all either approaching, going through or have recently gone through, “The Change”. Over 25 great popular songs such as ‘The Great Pretender’, ‘Only You’, ‘The Lion Sleeps Tonight’, and ‘I will Survive’ are parodied and given new lyrics as the four leads sing loud and strong. So ‘Puff, the Magic Dragon’ becomes ‘Puff, My God, I’m Draggin’. The show’s author, Jeanie Linders who attended the recent Melbourne opening night, says it is a celebration. It’s often stated the show was inspired by too much red wine and a hot flush, she remembers standing in front of the fridge singing ‘Hot Flash’ to Rod Stewart’s ‘Hot Legs’.

More than just about what happens during menopause, it explores the whole range of issues facing women over 40. Woeful hot flashes, forgetfulness, mood swings, wrinkles, night sweats and chocolate binges are all confessed and made fun of. Often considered something to be kept secret, the show’s message is that menopause is a passage for all women, but that it should no longer be a silent passage. My friends who’ve been have all said there was a wonderful sense of sisterhood with audiences recognising and indentifying with the issues. So if a night of celebrating and empowering women, done with great hilarity, dance and song, in a theatre full of women sounds like fun, and you’ve somehow managed to miss it so far, don’t miss it at the fabulous Q Theatre.

{By Robert Henderson

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Menopause the Musical is showing at The Q Theatre, 253 Crawford St, Queanbeyan. Bookings 6298 0290. Tues 2nd to Sat 6th February 2010, 8pm $39, $44, $49. Thur & Sat 2pm $39.


Tilley’s

Devine Café Gallery

TILLEY’S IS NESTLED IN TREE LINED LYNEHAM JUST 4KM FROM THE CITY For over 26 years Tilley’s has been famous for it’s breakfasts, lunches, and dinners... and of course its fabulous coffees. Tilley’s attracts not only ‘regulars’ but visitors from overseas and interstate who enjoy the all-day menu specials, and oh such lovely cake! Internationally renowned for legendary blues, jazz and classical concerts, Tilley’s continues to attract artists of international calibre who prefer the intimacy of a warm theatre atmosphere clad in red velvet, brass and dark timber booths. With a fully licensed bar, one can enjoy Champagne with breakfast, or in the evening savour our broad range of wines, spirits or boutique beers on tap.

OPENING HOURS 9am – 10pm Monday to Saturday 9am – 6pm Sunday

Darren Hanlon @ Tilleys Sunday 20th December 2009 Darren Hanlon returns to Tilleys for a habitual Christmas show, having just returned from a US tour and soon to disappear back overseas to record his 4th album. Not so much a seasonal extravaganza, this is more a chance to see him in stripped back mode as his songs have a chance to breathe with just himself and his guitar sharing the stage. Support comes from Berlin based Caterina Barbieri, aka Missincat, who visits Australia for the very first time. Tickets available at www.tilleyºs.com.au

To reserve your favourite table or booth phone us on 6247 7753 Corner of Wattle & Brigalow Streets, Lyneham • www.tilleys.com.au FUSE 35


JD, 43 Team Leader

condoms aren’t a problem, I use them to build the anticipation

Photography by

aidsaction.org.au

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EAR CANDY

DIZZEE RASCAL

TONGUE N’ CHEEK If you don’t like Dizzee Rascal then you ARE an idiot! I don’t mean to offend, but you are! If Wiley is the Godfather of Grime, then Dizzee is his Grandson… OMG, this album is so good! If I was the king of the world (which one day I will be) the first rule I would make is that every song ever written would have to be rerecorded with Dizzee style bass-lines, they are fricken (warning, youthism alert) EPIC. Then my second ruling would be that all future music would be required to have Dizzee style basslines. Catch my drift? Therefore I suggest getting this album and educating yourself on Dizzee Rascal because when I rule he will probably be the most important person in the world! But seriously, this album is pretty good, something about that London accent, wicked beats, amazing bass and out of control energy that all just works so well together. It has this power over me; it has the power to make me jump uncontrollably and instantly possesses my angry neighbour and makes her, without fail, come beating on my door yelling, ‘SHUT UP, I have kids you know!’ To that I say, ‘Well bring them over; maybe they will have some fun for a change you cranky old bitch’. Shit, I hope my neighbour doesn’t read this! Fricken out of control songs on this album to listen to are ‘Bonkers’, ‘Dance Wiv Me’ and ‘Holiday’. Plus, for all you electro fans the track ‘Dance Wiv Me’ features none other than the mega cool Calvin Harris, yay! Happy listening! Oh and one more thing, listen to ‘Dirtee Cash’, it’s fricken awesome!

{Music reviews by Damien Pratt

BLUEJUICE

HEAD OF THE HAWK Bluejuice are a five-piece band from Sydney that has really shot to the top in the recent times. If you are a commercial radio listener you may have heard their song ‘Broken Leg’ getting some airplay and I bet you liked it? This album is their second studio effort and has not failed to impress that’s for sure. Seems they have secured a stack more fans since releasing this puppy, and if you have been lucky enough to have gone to a festival where they have performed, you could definitely confirm how completely ape-shit the crowd went for them! Now the track ‘Broken Leg’ has a fantastic video clip that you should take the time to watch on YouTube. It has a really camp skipping theme and is pretty amazing stuff. It has even been nominated for an ARIA for ‘Best Video’ in 2009. Have a look and see for yourself. Bluejuice have an interesting music style, I am not to sure what genre they fit in to so I decided to consult the interweb. Here are a few wild genres that people have made up for them:

➊ ➌ ➎

Punk-hop Ska-tinged Pop

➋ ➍

Downtempo Hip Hop Pounding Disco

Too straight for funk, too groovy for indie rock and too sweaty for pop

Sooooooo, I am not too sure if any of the above really are actual genres, but then again who is actually policing the naming of genres anyway. My personal favourite is no. 5 — I think it was a music reviewer from the Sydney Morning Herald that called them that. Awesome I say. I’ll just place them in to the stock standard genre of punk-indie with a dash of the hop of the hip variety. Get it? Eh, me neither…

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With Christmas just around the corner, we’re all starting to unwind from the busy year of work and are taking the time to relax and celebrate another great year. It is also the time of year that we tend to need to add a notch or two to the belt buckle. But with careful planning and some smart thinking, we can still enjoy the holiday period and not add that extra weight. Being away from the gym and out of routine makes continuing your fitness program difficult, but also opens up the opportunity to try something new and have fun with your fitness. So here it is, your Holiday Training Tips — a simple list of exercises and activities that can be done while on holidays to help fight the battle of the bulge this summer.

1.Beach Jog If you like a good perve, this is probably one of the better ones. Running on sand is a lot harder than running on a solid surface, so you can burn a couple of extra calories, while having the opportunity to scout the beach for the best place to sunbake. 2. Bushwalk If you’re out camping, or anywhere near bushland, this is another great opportunity to get out and see the country, while not even realising how hard you’re working. Walking up and down hills and over the uneven ground can be a great muscle workout for the legs, as well as burning calories. 3. Bike Ride Summer alone is a great time to drag that bike out, but when you’re on holidays, it’s even more of a reason. The opportunity to go for a ride and check out the scenery is fantastic, and hey, the side effect of burning fat and toning the legs sounds pretty good to me. 4. Swimming A total body workout that does not have to be tiring and boring. Going down to the pool with some friends and throwing a ball around, and running around in and out of the pool is again some incidental exercise that will help keep you trim for summer.

5. Push Ups While it is a traditional exercise, it is also an easy one to do first thing in the morning. Why not wake up, pump out some push ups to get the blood flowing and help maintain the muscles in the chest at the same time. 6. Sit Ups Another traditional exercise, but one that is again quick and easy and helps pump the blood. Maybe a good one to quickly do before taking your shirt off down at the beach, so the abs are pumped full of blood before you unleash. 7. Surfing This is probably one of my personal favourites. Surfing is an awesome total body workout, using every muscle in your body to be able to jump on top of a wave and ride it into the beach. And hey, there is nothing hotter than watching a guy walk up the beach with his wet suit half off, abs showing, tanned body dripping in water and surf board under the arm (you can wipe the drool away now). So there is plenty that you can do to help stay fit while you’re on holidays. You just need to try and plan your activities to include some form of incidental exercise. The biggest tip to remember is that alcohol (whether it is low carb or not) is one of the biggest contributors to increasing body fat over the holiday period. Drink responsibly and train smarter, to help keep you fit for summer.

{

FUSE 38

By Brendan Farnhill Alive! Health & Fitness

Any health, fitness or dietry advice contained in this magazine is for informational purposes only. Consult your physician and a fitness/health professional before changing your diet, doing any exercise program, or taking any supplements of any kind.

BODY SHAPE

HOLIDAY FITNESS


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COMMUNITY

{By David Mills

NEW CAMPAIGN CELEBRATES SEX Would you be willing to put your face on a condom pack or poster promoting safe sex? Four Canberra locals have proudly become the face of the AIDS Action Council’s latest safe sex campaign, I ♥ sex, l ♥ condoms, launched at SpringOut Fairday at Westlund House. If you went to any of the major events during SpringOut this year, chances are you would have seen this exciting safe sex campaign (also in this edition of FUSE and FUSE07 pg27). What’s unique about the campaign is that it is designed to remind the community that most gay men are using condoms most of the time. Naturally it would be good if the use of condoms were higher and if rates of transmission were lower, but whenever the rates of HIV diagnoses go up, the gay community is often branded in the media as ‘complacent’, which is simply not true. The reality is that there is a culture of safe sex in the gay community. Using safe sex not only shows you care about your own health, but that of your partners as well. Ever since the HIV epidemic broke out, it was the LGBT community that first started driving the safe sex culture and encouraged gay men to use condoms (I say LGBT deliberately because members from all across the community came together to respond to the crisis in the community). It was the community’s own initiative that was the biggest factor in Australia’s successful HIV response, before government money or media campaigns and long before treatments. The safe sex culture has continued, as evidenced by the results of the Canberra Gay Community Periodic Survey each three years. Few people would use condoms if there was no risk of transmitting HIV or other sexually transmitted infections, but condoms should be a symbol of pride and fun sex.

FUSE 40

Pride in taking care of our own health and our partner’s, and fun sex because we can enjoy sex with condoms without stress and fear and with whoever we want without worrying about HIV status. If you love sex, then you can love condoms as well. Lesbian and bisexual women are also part of the community and have been targeted in this campaign to put lesbian sexual health on the agenda. When the results of the Snapshot Lesbian and Bisexual Women’s Health Survey is released shortly, the community will have a picture of current sexual behaviour in the community and can feed into discussion over women’s sexual health. The new safe sex packs are available now from Westlund House and social venues.


CHRISTMAS SNUCK UP ON ME

Having a cash flow plan is the first step to successful financial management, the second is being disciplined and staying accountable to your planned expenses. I admit it is hard these days with all the advertising trying to get us to spend our hard earned money on ‘stuff’ and ‘things’. We all know people who suffer from what I call ‘chronic-not-enough-ness’. Always needing to buy the latest and greatest. This isn’t bad if you can afford it, but often leaves people stuck on the tread-mill of debt and repayment which builds and builds to a point which sometimes gets a little overwhelming.

It reminds me of the quote from Fight Club:

MONEY SHOT

It amazes me, as a financial adviser, how many people say to me, ‘Christmas snuck up on me this year!’ Did they change the date? Did I miss the memo? Christmas is still December 25 isn’t it? What I think they mean is that they have not planned for the expense of Christmas this year. The same can go for car rego or insurance or birthdays or clothing or holidays!

‘Advertising has us chasing cars and clothes, working jobs we hate so we can buy things we don’t need.’ This Christmas I challenge you to do things which are meaningful but don’t leave you with the credit card hangover. Then for Christmas 2010, decide on your spending amount for Christmas and set up a bank account which has no ATM access, for which you can set aside a fortnightly amount. When you start shopping for Christmas, do as Santa does and make a list, check it twice, set aside an amount for each present and go shopping with the ‘purpose in mind’, rather than just ‘money in hand’. I have one client who does all their Christmas shopping in January the year before during the sales — Now that is planning! Enjoy the silly season and remember a ‘plan’ is as good as a holiday! I may have that a little confused but a plan will ensure you can enjoy your next holiday!

Scott Malcolm (scott@money-mechanics.com.au) is Director of Money Mechanics (ph: 6257 5557) who are authorised to provide financial advice through PATRON Financial Advice AFSL 307379.

}

The information provided on this document is of a general nature only. It has been prepared without taking into account your objectives, financial situation or needs. Before acting on this information you should consider its appropriateness having regard to your own objectives, financial situation and needs.

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OUT & ABOUT

FAIRDAY09

Thank you! The AIDS Action Council of the ACT would like to thank all of our incredible members, volunteers, sponsors, partners and supporters for such a fantastic year. With your help we were able to do so much incredible work for the community and will continue our work with HIV affected communities.

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aidsaction.org.au


{

By John Kloprogge

EQUAL LOVE U P D A T E !

As the weather keeps getting hotter, so things are heating up in the movement for marriage equality. Last weekend, the Victorian ALP state conference followed in the steps of their Tasmanian counterparts and passed a motion calling for the Rudd Government to legalise queer marriage. On Remembrance Day this month, the ACT Legislative Assembly passed a bill to allow same-sex couples to have a legally binding civil union ceremony. Last week, celebrants began registering to become the first to officiate at civil unions ceremonies in the ACT. Couples are lining up for ceremonies as we speak. And as I write, the Senate is about to release its longawaited report on marriage equality, and activists are preparing nationwide rallies in response — this Saturday 28 November. The rallies will launch the next step in the campaign: the National Year of Action for marriage equality, 2010 — a federal election year, no less! The movement is entering a new stage. People are no longer content to simply debate the matter. We want action. Sixty per cent of Australians support our cause, yet the Rudd Government seems as intransigent as ever.

There are still hints that Kevin Rudd may override our civil union laws. Such a move would be truly extraordinary. The ACT Government has bent over backward to ensure the new laws are compatible with federal marriage laws. They even received legal advice from the now Commonwealth Solicitor-General, Stephen Gageler SC, who maintains there is no legal conflict. If Mr Rudd chooses to override our hard-won reforms now, it will be entirely due to issues of prejudice, not law. Whatever course the Rudd Government takes however, one thing will remain clear: we will continue to fight for full equality — for all gay, lesbian, bisexual, trans and intersex people — until it’s achieved. More info: ph 0422 913 942 (John), or 0412 109 160 (Farida). For details of rallies interstate, visit www.equallove.info. John Kloprogge is a member of Equal Love Canberra.

FUSE 43


OUT & ABOUT

EQUAL LOVE

PURPLE PARTY

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Lesbians have the same risk of cervical cancer as heterosexual women. Genital HPV is spread through genital skin contact during sexual activity. Over time an abnormality can lead to cervical cancer if left untreated. Having a Pap test is not always easy for lesbians, as community acceptance and recognition of lesbians and lesbian relationships can vary. Finding access to a practitioner who is knowledgeable and understanding of lesbian health issues may be difficult.

SHFPACT’s all female doctors & nurses have been providing sensitive health care to our community for almost 40 years. The choice to disclose information about your sexuality is yours, so don’t feel that you have to. It may, however, result in a better and more informed health care experience.

For info phone 6247 3077 or visit www.shfpact.org.au

FUSE 45


WORLD STAGE

New

Law in Uganda On the 14th of October the Uganda Parliament introduced the Anti-Homosexuality Bill, 2009; building on previous legislation that enforces up to life imprisonment for ‘homosexual acts’, this bill follows years of increased pressure and oppression against the queer community in Uganda.

The role of international anti-queer activists in its inception is the second particularly scary part of this legislation. The push for this law began in earnest during a conference held in March by the Family Life Network. Two prominent anti queer activists from the United States, Don Schmierer and Scott Lively, attended the conference. This is part of an increasing trend for anti-queer activists becoming active in international anti-queer fights, especially in the developing world. American conservatives are now making more appearances in countries in Africa, Eastern Europe and South America in an obvious attempt to ‘internationalise’ the extreme anti-queer movement.

The new law attacks queers in two areas. First, there is increased punishment for ‘homosexual activity’. This includes a criminalisation of obtaining same-sex marriages overseas, punished with lifetime imprisonment, as well as the introduction of a new category of criminality called ‘aggravated homosexuality’, which is met by the death penalty. Those who fit this category include ‘repeat offenders’ of ‘homosexual acts’ and those who participate in ‘homosexual acts’ that are HIV-positive.

Such an internationalisation of the anti-queer movement needs to be countered by a continued internationalisation of the queer movement. It is essential that people from around the world join together to oppose any attempts to oppress people (whether queer or not) anywhere in the world. In late October, the Labor and Liberal Party rejected a motion in the Senate from Greens Senator, Sarah Hanson Young, condemning Uganda for the introduction of this legislation, saying it was not the role of the Senate to comment on international issues. With this legislation looking certain to pass the Ugandan Parliament, it is our role to support our comrades in Uganda to end their continued oppression and to demand that our Government does the same through condemning the Ugandan parliament for this action.

This law complements increased oppression of queers by the state, media and society in Uganda. Reports state that queer people and activists have come under increased pressure over recent years with regular death threats and violent attacks in the country. This law is particularly scary therefore, as it will make any attempts to improve this situation by queer activists almost impossible, leaving the Ugandan queer community facing an extremely unpredictable future. 46

{By Brooklyn Hulands — Journalist

Oppressive

The second attack is on the rights of civil society. This includes a ban on any activity that is deemed to ‘promote homosexuality’; including the criminalisation of any speech or peaceful assembly that advocates the rights of queer people. Added to this is a legal requirement for all people to report LGBT persons to police within 24 hours of learning about that person’s queerness. Failure to do so could result in fines or imprisonment for up to three years.

FUSE

{By Simon Copland

RUSSIAN LESBIAN COUPLE JUST MARRIED IN TORONTO The couple intends to start a legal battle to have their union recognised in Russia. Despite all obstacles and legal restrictions in Russia, a lesbian couple entered into same-sex marriage in Toronto last month. Numerous media and local activists were present at the ceremony during which Irina Fedotova-Fet and Irina Shipitko exchanged vows. The couple, together with their lawyer and organiser of Moscow Gay Pride, Nikolai Alekseev as well as local activists hosted a press conference at the Toronto City Hall before the ceremony during which Canadian gay activists, spoke about their struggle for marriage equality, stressing the importance of supporting similar movements in other countries, including Russia. They compared the fight for same sex marriage in Russia with a similar campaign which started in Canada two decades ago.


lithium helping your business bloom

graphic design corporate identity branding print advertising website design email newsletters telephone 02 6287 7125 www.lithium.net.au

FUSE 47


Rose

DEAR ROSE

Dear

If you would like to write to dear rose please email her at dearrose@fusemagazine.com.au ~ letters are placed either here or on the Fuse website fusemagazine.com.au

Dear Rose, My new girlfriend is Jewish and she had a heart-to-heart with me about no Christmas tree, celebrations or gifts. At first I was ok with it, but now it’s approaching nearer I feel sad and that I’m missing out. Bec Dear Bec, I respect the beautiful and spiritual ceremonies that the Jewish faith celebrates, I have been asked to attend a few Shabbat dinners myself. Whilst it is ok for your new girlfriend to emphasise her religious beliefs during the Christmas period, it doesn’t mean that you can’t celebrate your own traditions. The Jewish faith celebrates its version of “Christmas” by celebrating Chanukah — the festival of lights. The celebration is for Jewish survival as a nation and the triumph of light over darkness. Check out the internet for details of this lovely tradition. It’s disappointing that as human beings we are not more curious about each other’s spiritual beliefs. Only through that curiosity will we ever really respect each other’s beliefs. Personally I would opt for a little naughtiness, cover myself in Tinsel, sing Christmas carols with gusto and share the Christmas spirit with everyone!

Dear Rose, I’m off overseas for Christmas. Do you think holiday sex counted as cheating? Hopeful Dear Hopeful, Whilst in the land of make believe, holiday sex might be considered acceptable — in the land of reality, it might not. I have found that most people who are in relationships and decide to go on a holiday on their own really want to change some things in their life, including their relationship. So here is my Dear Rose advice: if you think you might be inclined to have a casual encounter whilst you are overseas, be smart, talk to your partner about what the rules are surrounding this issue. Remember, be safe and make sure that you protect yourself and practice safe sex.

FUSE 48

Dear Rose, I’ve been trying to break up with my boyfriend, but every time he breaks down and I stay. What am I going to do? Frustrated Dear Frustrated, They say that breaking up is hard to do! And it is! Just break up already! You are being monumentally un-fair to this person by going back and forward. If you know that you are not in love with him then you are not giving him a chance to move on with his life and find someone who will love him. There are reasons why people break up — try to remember those reasons when you are breaking up with him. Too many people stay in relationships long after they are dead and buried. Trust me when I say the kindest thing that you can do is to bite the bullet, be strong and stand by your decision.

Dear Rose, This is my first Christmas with my boyfriend; I’d like to give him something really special. What do you think he’d like? Jay Dear Jay, Jay, Jay, Jay... what can I say? The possibilities are only limited by your imagination. If it was me I would go BIG, really big... so big that your first Christmas together would be always remembered. So I would be thinking of turning up to the new in-laws house in a gay version of a birthday suit... oops wrong occasion... I mean a Santa suit complete with a rainbow sack. Seriously though Jay, etiquette would say give something that is personal and significant, he will love anything that you give him. Except one of those t-shirts that say Santa was here!!!

Merry Christmas message to the readers Never a Christmas morn, never an old year ends, when someone thinks of someone, old days, old times, old friends! Thank you to all the readers who have written in and have supported this column. I wish everyone holiday cheer, love, peace and happiness for the New Year!

}


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FUSE 08 A very Fabulous Xmas (Boy Cover)