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celebrating canada’s lgbt LIFESTYLE | november 2014









a dip in the


of youth




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Downtown Toronto

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MAGAZINE PUBLISHER Patricia Salib EDITOR Jim Brosseau Art director Nicolรกs Tallarico FASHION DIRECTOR Adam Webster CONTRIBUTORs Philip Franchini, Paul Gallant, Dr. Malcolm Hedgcock, Tracy Howard, Adrienne Jordan, Brad McPhee, Michael Pihach, Adam Segal, Riley Stewart, Casey Williams, David Wright ON the cover Photography by Adam Webster; Sage and Gleb (Velocci models); creative direction,; assistant stylist, Brandon Pollard; grooming, Monica Pavez Senior Account Director Woodrow Monteiro Marketing/sponsorship co-ordinator Patrick Forestell DIRECTOR OF OPERATIONS Reggie Lanuza Controller Miki Ogiri OUR MISSION Inspire gay men and lesbians to live life to the fullest. Expand the gay and lesbian community by valuing diversity and individual choice. Celebrate Canada. Provide readers with compelling news, information and entertainment. ADVERTISING & OTHER INQUIRIES 416-800-4449, ext. 100 EDITORIAL INQUIRIES 416-800-4449, ext. 201 PRODUCTION TALK BACK

Feel free to share your comments on IN or articles in the magazine by emailing us at

IN Magazine is published 12 times per year by The Mint Media Group. All rights reserved. 182 Davenport Rd, Suite 300, Toronto, ON, M5R 1J2

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issue 54

November 2014


06 | THE DOCTOR IS IN Putting testosterone to the test 08 | WHEELS The Audi that goes everywhere 09 | GROOMING Making your skin safe for winter 10 | MONEY $TYLE Finding the best financial advisor 11 | ON THE TOWN Scenes from the party circuit 12 | FITNESS PROFILE Ben Fraser’s defining moment 14 | ON RELATIONSHIPS When to call it quits


15 | BEAUTIFULLY BALEARIC A pair of Spanish island treasures


20 | MARRIAGE, MoNOGaMY AND GAY MEN When the heterosexual template doesn’t apply


30 | LESSONS FROM JOAN RIVERS Remembering a steadfast and funny friend

32 | CULTURAL CALENDAR Events of LGBT interest across Canada 34 | FLASHBACK The Mounties show their stuff

Adam Webster


24 | THAT’S A WRAP! Cool coats that bring on a warm front

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INfront collective wisdom for living well

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The Doctor Is In

Testosterone Replacement Therapy → Not quite the fountain of youth By Dr. Malcolm Hedgcock


ith age, men see a gradual and predictable fall in the production of their most important sex hormone, testosterone. Primarily, this occurs as the testicles, which generate most of the testosterone in the body, become less active. However, unlike women, who experience a very dramatic and potentially uncomfortable drop in sex-hormone production during menopause, men are less likely to see a significant decline. Still, some wonder if common concerns men have as they age, such as sexual dysfunction and memory loss, could be explained by natural testosterone reduction—and whether replacement might be of benefit. The ongoing Baltimore Longitudinal Study on Aging reveals that about 20 percent of 60-year-old men have low testosterone when compared with young men. This jumps to 50 percent for those in their 80s. Most of the information we have about the dangers of low testosterone come from examining men who have low hormone levels due to illness or surgery, not old age. What we learn from these studies is that testosterone deficiency, or hypogonadism, leads to decreased sexual function, diminished bone and muscle strength, low mood and

memory, and several conditions that contribute to heart disease. The European Male Aging Study indicates that a certain percentage of men with age-related low testosterone might exhibit a constellation of these problems, too, but a causal link is difficult to establish. If we presume that age-related testosterone deficiency does lead to medical complications, it is still unclear whether taking supplements will reverse the problem. Most of the studies looking at treatment are small, and they often use varied doses and methods of administration. Some show a mild improvement in muscle mass, bone density or mood— but little else. Perhaps if we were better able to determine who is a good candidate for testosterone therapy, the results would be more conclusive. Currently, our measurements of testosterone are unreliable. Blood levels vary widely throughout the day (though that variation attenuates as we age), and it is found in several different forms in the body. We don’t yet know what measurement is most useful in telling us if there is a true shortage. We need to be very careful to select the most appropriate candidates for testosterone therapy, because it carries with it some

potential harm. Prostate cancer and prostate enlargement are partially testosterone-dependent, so adding pharmaceutical testosterone could increase these risks. There is also evidence, albeit weak, to suggest that it can worsen obstructive sleep apnea. Furthermore, it can thicken the blood, and there are conflicting data with respect to testosterone increasing one’s probability of suffering a heart attack. There is no consensus among experts as to what the best course of action is for men with symptoms of low testosterone. I tend to offer treatment with prescription gel for symptomatic men who have low testosterone measured on at least two or three occasions, and only after appropriate screening for prostate cancer. That said, until we have more data we won’t know for sure if this is a medical condition necessitating treatment, or just an unfortunate consequence of aging that we all must accept.

Dr. Malcolm Hedgcock is a Toronto-trained family doctor living and working in Vancouver. He has a special interest in gay men’s health issues, including the primary care of those living with HIV and AIDS.

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INFRONT Wh e e l s

Audi’s Q5 TDI Is Ready for All Roads → It’s got what it takes for those long drives—or just a short trip to the movies By Casey Williams


e hate to admit it, but hot little roadsters are not for all roads. Sure, they’re great for storming freeways or tracks, but rough asphalt and downtown pot holes are a no-go. Maybe you need a performance car that can play on more roads, maybe something like the Audi Q5 TDI diesel. Typically Audi, smooth bodies are shaped for the Autobahn but aren’t flashy. Yes, there’s the big grille with Audi’s four-ring logo, projector beams with LED halos and large fog lamps. Sporty 19-inch alloy wheels also make a statement. But the crossover is clean and smooth. Inside, it’s pure understated

elegance. Everything is well made, laden with real wood and focused on driver engagement. There are no reconfigurable instrument displays—just two large gauges. A thick leather-wrapped steering wheel and heated leather seats

delight. Select the Panoramic Roof, tri-zone automatic climate control, power hatch and Bluetooth phone/streaming audio. Safety is enhanced by a backing camera, bumper sensors and blind-spot indicators.

2015 Audi Q5 TDI Five-passenger, AWD crossover Powertrain 179kW/240hp 3.0-litre turbo diesel V6, 8-speed auto transmission Suspension f/r Ind/Ind Wheels 19”/19” alloy f/r Brakes disc/disc fr/rr Must-have features Style, Diesel delight 0-100 km/h: 6.7s Top speed 209 km/h Fuel economy 10/7.5 litres/100 km city/hwy Assembly Ingolstadt, Germany Base/As-tested price: $35,800/$51,200

Audi’s MMI infotainment system uses a console-mounted joywheel surrounded by function buttons for audio, radio, navigation and vehicle information. A small volume/ seek knob is placed close to the front passenger. I’m not usually a fan of random buttons for simple functions, but Audi’s system works well. Kicking it down the highway is a 3.0-liter turbo-diesel V6 engine that generates 179kW/240 horsepower and a mindthumping 428 lb.-ft. of torque. Power hits pavement through an eight-speed automatic transmission and Quattro allwheel drive. Fuel economy rates 10/7.5 litres per 100 km city/hwy. During a four-hour highway run, my husband and I settled in. There’s no denying the joy of driving a diesel-powered Audi. It accelerates easily and feels substantial. It’s the kind of car you want to drive a very long distance. I like stiffly sprung German iron, but the suspension gets a workout on rough city streets. Audi makes a strong case for diesels being the go-to choice of frugal driving enthusiasts. At $51,200 for the Q5 TDI, there’s a lot to like. And you won’t have to avoid any road.

A contributing writer for, Casey Williams is a frequent business traveller to Montreal. He contributes to the New York-based LGBT magazine Metrosource and the Chicago Tribune. He and his husband live in Indianapolis, where Williams is a columnist for that city’s newspaper, the Star.

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IN front

g ro o m i n g

Looking Good → Keeping winter from having its way with your skin By Tracy Howard


inter’s near, and with the colder temps and drier air comes stressed-out skin. The seasonal toll taken by that late-night walk to the bar or early-morning run can be countered with these chilly-season skin-care essentials to help you save face—and the rest of the body. Screen saver. It’s no time to skip sunscreen, even sans a Vallarta vacay. Sun damage can still happen in winter, and snow reflects UV rays that can cause sunburn. Plus, studies show that people who use sunscreen year-round have youngerlooking skin. Look for a broad-spectrum sunscreen, minimum SPF 30, targeting your skin concern (whether sensitive, oil-free or

anti-aging). RoC Soleil Protexion+ Velvet Moisture Quenching Cream SPF 30 ($23, at drugstores) protects against UVA/UVB rays while hydrating skin. The brush-off. Worst winter woe? That’s a toss-up between arctic air and the scaly skin it creates. While we can’t do much about that diva Mother Nature, drybrushing alleviates flaking. Use a dry brush (available at health-food stores) before showering so you can rinse off exfoliated skin cells. Start at your feet and brush gently upwards toward the heart. Once you get to the chest, brush downwards. Mask it! Dry, oily or irritated? There’s a mask for that. While not part of most

men’s regimens, masks perk up dull winter complexions. Paraben-free REN Glycol Lactic Radiance Renewal Mask ($66, exfoliates and helps reduce the appearance of fine lines as well as blackheads. (Avoid using immediately after shaving.) Lip service. Even guys who eschew grooming beyond shampoo, soap and shaver likely have lip balm. Treat chapped chops by applying balm and then using a toothbrush to remove dead skin. Tracy Howard is a writer and editor specializing in lifestyle topics. She’s also the creator of, a blog that takes an inside-out approach to looking good and feeling good at any age.

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IN front Money$tyle

CHEMISTRY LESSONS → What you need to consider when picking a financial advisor By Brad McPhee


t may not be a friendship per se, but your financial advisors do get an intimate look into your life. Only after eight years as a financial advisor do I feel able to explain how you should go about finding the right financial fit. And by “fit” I mean the right advice at the right time for you to use to your advantage. Because if you’re not getting advice that gives you an advantage, then there’s no need for you to pay an advisor for it. Some questions to ask yourself: Are you comfortable? An old adage says it’s better

to be comfortable in your clothes than only to wear comfortable clothes. So it is that you need to be comfortable and financially naked in front of your advisors. So the first attribute to seek is being comfortable with financial advice. If you are not, the advice you get may not be in your best interest. But this isn’t a one-way street. Any good advisor needs to be revealing to you, as well. Do they have similar clients? Good advisors need to reveal if they have other clients like you. They should be able to relate to your situation because they are familiar with it. If the advisor does not, then he or she may not have the experience you need. They may overlook something you need or put you into financial instruments m o r e aggressive than are appropriate or relevant to your situation. Ask your advisor to tell you about himself or herself and their practices the same as you have revealed your financial life to them. And if they don’t care about your financial life or want to share about their practice, then move on. You need,

ahem, strategic advice. By this point, you should know whether or not you “want” to work with this person. Were this a personal relationship, I would say you are now ready to be dating, but exclusivity may still be somewhat down the line. Why not be exclusive yet? Don’t be exclusive yet because comfort is not enough. Similar to your personal relationships, it may cost you to leave your financial advisor, so look before you leap. Secondly, your advisors need to earn your trust as well as their commissions. We want our financial lives to thrive if we are paying for advice. In this regard, we need to have a comprehensive plan. This is what separates the amateurs from the professionals. Can they explain things to you clearly? Advisors worth their commission can explain the complex world of finance in easyto-understand terms. Anyone who can’t could be disguising a lack of knowledge. I would not deal with an advisor who could not say, “I don’t know, but I’ll find out.” Finance is complex today, and no one knows it all. You should feel confident that your advisor understands it and explains it in reasonable language, not just a lot of financial jargon. Don’t tolerate this. You are paying for advice and should have some understanding of it. Since you are not my client, I am prohibited from giving you specific financial recommendations. But I can give you an overview of what a solid financial plan should look like. It should be a document. It should start with an overview of your personal financial situation (net worth and cash flow). It should

include your goals and may include specific milestones. It needs to address tax strategies. It should reference estate planning (wills, representation agreements and powers of attorney, for example). Get it in writing, otherwise how will you do an annual review and be able to compare forecasts with reality? Do you have confidence? Most important to our psychological well-being is confidence. It comes from being asked the right questions and asking what you want and need to know about your financial future. Think of this as the commitment stage. If you have found an advisor who has clients similar to you, if they can explain and demystify the complex world of finance and if they are able to put in place a comprehensive plan, then you can ask the questions you need answered and ultimately financially modelled in order to make the best decisions for a prosperous future. And, as in all relationships, this is only the beginning: your professionals are simply advisors. You are the deciders, and you have to live with the outcome of the decisions you make.

Brad McPhee, past chair of the Gay and Lesbian Association of B.C., is a Vancouver-based consultant with Investors Group. Views expressed in IN magazine are solely McPhee’s. IN magazine, as well as Investors Group and its affiliates, are not responsible and cannot accept any liability. The column is intended as a source of information and not a solicitation to buy or sell investments nor to provide investment, financial, legal, accounting, tax or other professional advice. If you have a personalfinance question, email it to Money$tyle at

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Spencer Xiong

On the TOWN By Michael Pihach

Night For Rights

Woody’s 25th Anniversary Party










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Art With Heart at The Carlu




→ 1. Linda Leja 2. Martina Sorbara 3. Natalie Turvey, Theresa Ebden, Justin Trudeau 4. Danny Glenwright 5. Georgie Girl 6. David and Glenn Dixon 7. Fay Slift, David Hawe 8. David Luque, Michael Mirpuri 9. Olivia Chow 10. Marina Ananieva, Adam De Vos 11. Brian Jiang, Ben Todd 12.Jamie Alexander, Glen Peloso 13.Steven Endicott, Pamela Dinsmore, Stephanie Karapita 14. Kent Wylie, Cameron Duff 1 1 I N M a g a z in e N o v e m b e r 2 0 1 4

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Fitness Profile

Benjamin David Fraser PROFESSION Bartender and marketing student. ROLE MODELS First, my mother. She has been through a lot and has persevered and strived through it all. She’s always been there for me. Second would be my best friend, Bobby. From the day I met him, he’s always pushed me to be myself without worrying about what others thought, leading by example. IMPACT OF SEXUALITY ON SPORTS WHILE GROWING UP I think my sexuality affected my ability to feel comfortable in a lot of team-sports settings, but more because of my own insecurities than anything else. I definitely leaned more toward solo sports like snowboarding and skateboarding. ADVICE TO YOUTH ON OVERCOMING BIASES IN SPORTS Play the sport for you and no one else, whatever the sport may be. Break molds and be a trailblazer. I love seeing how the world’s views on gender roles are changing, and it would be a privilege to be a part of this movement. FITNESS STRATEGY My fitness strategy has evolved a lot since I started working out. Since discovering crossfit while living in Ottawa, I’ve really embraced that fitness style. For cardio, I love to run outside and the Queen West Run Club in Toronto has really helped motivate me to run faster and longer every week. PERSONAL FITNESS GOALS For me, fitness is all about happiness. The feeling of finishing a morning run or a great circuit is like no other. My goals are to maximize my energy and keep myself motivated. HOBBIES Snowboarding, travel, yoga and fashion. SOURCE OF INSPIRATION I have an amazing group of friends who are all so talented, creative and motivated. I’m inspired by each of them daily! BEST LIFE LESSON SO FAR It’s never too late to start, but don’t waste a minute.

Photography: Riley Stewart

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Shoes: Nike Zoom Hypercross TR shirt: Nike Pro Combat Hyperwarm Dri-Fit Max Fitted Mock shorts: Nike Hyperspeed Flyknit Tights: Nike Pro Combat Hyperwarm Compression Hypercamo

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O n Re l at i o n s h i ps

You’re set to Leave, so now What? By Adam Segal

→ I’ve given my relationship a long hard look over the past six months and without a doubt have decided that it really needs to end. I’ve been with my partner for six years, and after the initial honeymoon, things essentially went downhill from there. We’ve tried couples counselling, but nothing has seemed to make the relationship feel better. At this point, fear is the only thing holding me back; I’m afraid of what people will think about my unsuccessful attempt at a real relationship. I guess I’m worried that my friends and family will see me as a failure and that it will affect how they perceive me overall. My family took a while to get comfortable with me being queer, so I’m especially worried that this will confirm their biases toward gay relationships. How can I get over my fear and do what I know is right? Amy

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Dear Amy: Often in these situations, we can find ourselves reactively leaping to the thought of separation when some hard work and patience could lead to a positive relationship overhaul. In this case, however, it seems you have thoroughly thought this through and carefully considered the possibility of separating, put in lots of effort and have come to a clear and confident conclusion. Now, your issue is no longer a broken relationship but rather your preoccupation with other peoples’ potential judgments and the intense fear of how bad you imagine you will feel as a result. A theory that I’ve been holding lately is this: when we are sitting in fear of a “future feeling”— in this case, shame—it likely means that there is already some of that feeling present inside of us. One way to reduce the panic about a possible “future feeling” is to get a little bit more comfortable experiencing and expressing that emotion in the here and now. It’s a lot harder to dread something that we are able to befriend and experience with bravery and compassion. It is important that you examine your own beliefs and notions about breakups and question any shame you yourself might be harbouring about this relation-

ship not lasting through to the twilight years. Unfortunately, we get infected with lots of messaging that frames all splits as either tragic or the result of complacency. The term “failed relationship” is thrown around with abandon, and this has always bugged me—especially when there are occasions in which staying in an unsatisfying relationship could be seen as the real tragedy. We gays have it doubly hard in that homophobia can push us to feel like we have to overcompensate and be so exceptional that we don’t struggle with the same woes as our hetero counterparts. I have a suspicion that lurking under your self-criticism is just a good dose of old-fashioned disappointment. See if you can brush the shame aside a little, and give yourself room to grieve the loss of what you had hoped this relationship would be—that might clear the way for you to enter your next chapter with less emotional baggage and a more solid sense of self-esteem.

Adam Segal, writer and therapist, works in private practice in downtown Toronto. Ask him your relationship or mental health question at

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t r av e l

Beautifully Balearic → Faced with the island temptations of Mallorca and Ibiza, you’ve got some Spain-ing to do Text & photography by Adrienne Jordan


he Balearic Islands of Spain, located in the western Mediterranean Sea, have been in the crosshairs of many rulers, including the Vandals of 461 AD, the Byzantine Empire and the Kingdom of Aragon. Many landmarks, like the imposing Gothic cathedral in Mallorca and the salt marshes in Ibiza, are reminders of their

ancient history and architectural wonders built on the beautiful islands. In addition to exploring the relics of past centuries, Mallorca and Ibiza both offer a plethora of excursions for outdoor enthusiasts—from boat rides through caves, to tanning on gayfriendly beaches. Start your journey by visiting the largest

island of the archipelago, Mallorca. Perhaps the most recognizable landmark in the capital of Palma de Mallorca is the magnificent La Seu Gothic cathedral. With walls built from sandstone and lined with flying buttresses that seem to rise out of the sea, La Seu was created during the rule of King James I of Aragon in 1229, with construction finishing

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four centuries later in 1601. It sits within the old city of Palma atop the former citadel of the Roman city, between the Royal Palace of La Almudaina and the episcopal palace. It also overlooks the Parc de la Mar, where couples stop for a romantic bite and teenage locals host rap battles in Spanish. The small entrance fee allows you to take in the wrought-iron candelabras designed by Spain’s most celebrated modernist architect, Antoni Gaudi, as well as one of the world’s largest stained glass naves, and the controversial unfinished Crown of Thorns,

fashioned from cardboard and cork and suspended above the altar. In Palma, shopping along the 100-yearold tree-lined Passeig de Born promenade is a must for experiencing the heart of city life. The Passeig de Born is the hub of fiestas, demonstrations and a place where families can enjoy an evening stroll. The promenade is lined with a selection of mid- and highrange shops, including Zara, Boss and Louis Vuitton. Born is also the home to Ca’n Solleric, a modern art gallery that opened in 1995 in a converted mansion.

Leaving the city, one should pay a visit to the east coast of the island, best known for its caves and stunning beaches. The eerielooking Caves of Drach are one of the island’s most unique attractions, extending for more than 3,900 feet with craggy stalactite formations that hang from the ceiling and jutting stalagmites that rise from the ground. The caves can be explored through an hourlong guided tour, which includes a classicalmusic concert and a boat trip across Lake Martel, one of the largest subterranean lakes in the world.

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Spend a day in the isolated, rugged west coast of Mallorca. Valldemossa is one of the island’s best-kept secrets—a small town with quaint homes and family bakeries. Many doorways of houses feature a religious symbol of Mallorca’s patron saint, Catalina Thomàs, said to protect them from harm. The Royal Carthusian monastery of Valldemossa is the area’s main draw. It’s the spot where the Carthusian monks were based for several centuries. Tourists who appreciate classical music will take delight in the souvenirs and personal objects left by Frédéric Chopin and

Georges Sand, who spent a winter there. The stone-paved alleys also make for a romantic stroll around the grounds. Heading back to Palma, a walk through the Poble Espanyol village gives you a glimpse of Spanish architecture, showing its development through Muslim and then Christian influences. You can eat Spanish food in the Plaza Mayor or sit outside a café watching passers-by browse for treasures at the quaint shops. Artists give displays of handicrafts in workshops scattered throughout the village. Palma City is also

→ Dinner is served at Ibiza’s the new Cotton Beach Club in Cala Tarida (opening page). The commanding Palma de Mallorca’s Pueblo Español (opposite) is a major attraction. Visitors receive a lush welcome (above) to the Palma de Mallorca.

the place where gay travellers will find such LGBT events as Saturday-night parties in the gay club La Demence; women flock to the Ella Lesbian Festival, a long weekend of beach activities and night parties. After a few days in Mallorca, take Air Berlin’s short, one-hour flight over to Ibiza.

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Air Berlin is an IGLTA member and also has an LGBT information site to promote travel within the gay community ( lgbt). Ibiza is renowned for bringing the best DJs in the world to sell-out events during the party season, which runs from May through September. AfroJack, David Guetta, Carlcox and Avicci are some of the headliner DJs seen on billboards all over the island. But Ibiza isn’t just for the party crowd: the island experience comes with adventure excursions, gourmet cuisine and ancient landmarks for the eager explorer. Start with your check-in to the Ushuaïa Tower Hotel, located in the lively Playa d’en Bossa. Before even approaching the lobby, you’ll hear music by the resident British DJ Paul Reynolds spilling from the pool area. This is a sign that the party has already started, and it’s not even 1 p.m. Before stripping off your airplane attire and throwing on some shorts to groove by the pool, spend a couple of hours taking in the island’s natural beauty. → beach party The inviting Cala Tarida Beach (left) is a live-and-let-live favourite. Another Cala Tarida option for sunbathers (below).

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A prelude to the wild night sure to come would be relaxing on the gay-friendly Ses Salines public beach about 10 minutes from the hotel. During the drive, miles of natural marshes can be seen outlining a combination of gleaming mounds of salt, the church of Sant Francesc, pinewoods and sabina thickets. The Ses Salines Park salt marshes date from 600 BC, and locals favor biking or running along this scenic path. Relax for a couple hours at Ses Salines beach, turning your body to and fro to absorb a nice even tan (and, yes, the island is toplessfriendly). When hunger has started to set in, visit the neighbouring gay-owned restaurant, Chiringay and savour its meat, fish, seafood and pasta specialties in a beachfront location. Back at the hotel, with the sun setting, you might decide to head over to the Ushuaïa Club. By then, dancers dressed in slinky outfits will have started moving to the DJ’s house music, and a crowd is forming around the massive 50-foot stage. Ushuaïa was the first property to create a combination hotel and open-air club on the island, and it’s one of Ibiza’s hottest destinations for adults-only fun times. And as a bonus, the wristband received at check-in will give you free access to all of the Ushuaïa parties. Even the breakfast buffet offers grown-up food, like lump black roe caviar and air-dried beef from

the Alps. If this doesn’t sell you, according to Guille Rodriguez, social media marketing manager for Palladium Group, “there is no such thing as gay-friendly here because everyone is treated the same.” You decide to head out for your first night in Ibiza, and many club options are presented to you, like Pacha, Space and Privilege, each having different days for their weekly party. Gay travellers usually attend mainstream parties and events, but at times there are also gay-specific events. Since Playa d’en Bossa is near the airport, planes fly close to the rooftops, almost magically transforming the air as they go. Ibiza’s blowout gay event, the WE party, happens at the Ushuaïa Club in July and August. Additionally, the Velvet Ibiza party ( is described as “The Wildest Women’s-Only Weekend” for lesbians. It’s scheduled to take place in 2015 from May 28 to 31 and includes pool parties, concerts, yoga and beach events. On Tuesday and Saturday nights, the Hard Rock Hotel, just across the street from Ushuaïa, has a dinner-and-show experience on the ninth-floor rooftop. At the Heaven restaurant, guests can enjoy a four-course tapas menu while watching a series of performances, including ballet, sexy sailor dances and contortionists in a setting à la Las Vegas and Miami wrapped together.

Be sure to take the rental car out for a drive to the western side of the island, where another beautiful beach awaits your discovery. Enter Cala Salada. This tuckedaway paradise is mainly on the radar of the locals. Warm sand is flanked by crystal-clear blue waters that beckon you for a swim or to rent one of the paddle boats for an up-close perspective of the coast. Because Ibiza is known for its worldclass beaches, what harm could come from visiting a second one in a day? The see-andbe-seen Cotton Beach Club offers one of the best views on the island while dining. The ritzy restaurant-lounge is swathed in white and offers sweeping panoramas. Choose a Mediterranean main course, browse the sushi menu or reserve a table on the rooftop to take in the sunset. Eat and drink your fill, then head down to the Tarida beach to take a photo on the flat-rock formation, with sailboats and a bright horizon in the background. Mallorca and Ibiza both sparkle with centuries-old history and offer adventurous activities along the Mediterranean Sea. With top-tier hotels, mild weather year round and a lively party scene—not to mention their celebrated openness to LGBT travellers— these Balearic Islands have more than earned their must-see status.

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Marriage, Monogamy and Gay Men → Saying “I do” isn’t always the same as saying “I won’t.” In the ground war between nuptials and apps, do the roving eyes have it? By Paul Gallant

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eeing “Engaged” as the relationship status in a Scruff profile makes you wonder how deeply in love someone can really be, flirting online in the run-up to his wedding day. Or wonder what exactly that John, 31, is looking for on Tindr: “Married to Zack (yes, I realize this is a dating app).” You don’t have to be a prude to be struck by this unblushing relationship restlessness. Gay men around the world have made open relationships work. But, 11 years in, samesex marriage must have made

some difference in how gay men manage their relationships, mustn’t it? Same-sex marriage was legalized in Ontario in 2003, the same year Adam4Adam was founded. That’s two years after the invention of Manhunt, one year after Dudesnude, six years before the birth of Grindr, seven before Scruff. If marriage is a singular devotion to one person, that’s a lot of digital distraction. One might also theorize that tweaked-out online attention spans have made it hard for a generation of digital natives to focus on a single person for sexual and romantic entanglement. How does tilldeath-do-us-part compete with the Internet’s “I want it now”? Of course, it’s not a competition. Gay men have been having relationships— monogamous or not, cohabitating or not, recognized by family or not, marked by a ceremony or not, long term or not, passionate or not— long before we got access to marriage, with its illustrious straight history and promise of permanence. For some couples, same-sex marriage has been a godsend. For others, it’s an obsolete tool of the patriarchy to be wholeheartedly resisted. For others—perhaps the largest number of gay men—marriage is more like a tool. Different couples use it for different purposes. It pervades the life of some couples, while others haul it out only when needed. The institution of marriage is not a defining factor, and certainly doesn’t define everyone’s sex lives. “In the beginning, our view of marriage was what you would have expected a straight conservative couple to adhere to,” says Dan, 36, who I found on Scruff and interviewed by phone. (Many of the men I interviewed for this story asked that I not use their last names or even their real first names, not wanting family and employers to be able to Google their sex lives.) An American who moved to Canada for work in 2006, Dan

has been with his partner, who is in his early 40s, for 12 years. They met at a gay-friendly Reconciling Methodist church in Texas and had a non-legal wedding ceremony in the US in 2004. They got married-married about a year after moving to Canada. “Based on our family lives, monogamy is what I would have expected in my perfect world and what I believed I would eventually fall into,” Dan tells me. “After we had the ceremony in Texas, my parents allowed us to sleep in the same bed— even my grandparents allowed us to sleep in the same bed as a married couple.” Though Toronto granted the couple’s legal marriage, the city also reshaped their attitudes about relationships. They gradually realized that almost all their gay couple friends were in open relationships. After about a year of marriage, Dan and his partner agreed to open up theirs. The conversation was jumpstarted when they saw Shortbus, a 2006 film that playfully endorses sexual experimentation. But persuasive filmmaking wasn’t the only factor. Their legal marriage also played a part in ending, rather than reinforcing, six years of monogamy. “The fact that we have, on more than one occasion, committed ourselves to one another in front of our friends and family is one of the only reasons we’re both able to use apps [for hookups] and that our relationship survives,” says Dan. “We made that commitment, which underlies everything we do. When the disagreements happen, when someone feels jealous, we always have that commitment in the back of our minds.” Marriage’s immense power to remind couples of their commitment has generally been understood as a deterrence against extramarital sex: don’t screw it up. But, for gay couples who came of age with access to legal marriage, it may instead be a reminder that commitment is much bigger than the person

with whom one gets off.


he 2011 census counted 64,575 same-sex-couple families in Canada, which seems like underreporting, but let’s play the ball as it lies. About a third of those couples are married, so compared with straight couples, two-thirds of whom are married, we remain relative dabblers in matrimony. While marriage has been a thrilling possibility for some, others have run from it. “When there’s a lot of pressure around doing something, I like to resist and do the opposite,” says 32-year-old Dylan (not his real name). Though he supports the legal equality that same-sex marriage represents, he has no personal interest or investment in the institution. Two years into a five-year relationship, around the time a straight guy might be tempted to pop the question to his girlfriend, Dylan presented an ultimatum to his boyfriend: they were going to have an open relationship or none at all. “It’s like eating a hamburger every day,” he says. “Sometimes you want steak or poutine. It was either an open relationship or we were going to break up.” They talked about it in the beginning but adopted a “don’t ask, don’t tell” strategy with safe sex as the only other explicit rule. Counting same-sex couples is much easier than figuring out which ones are monogamous, what motivates them, what behaviour is okay in each relationship and how it affects the couple’s happiness and the longevity. Several larger studies, mostly out of the US, suggest that about 50 percent of gay male couples are monogamous. “I don’t have strong reason to doubt that’s accurate,” says Lanz Lowen, a San Francisco psychologist and consultant who co-authored a 2010 study of 86 gay couples with Blake Spears, his partner of 39 years. “Doing our research, we met some really wonderful, vibrant couples who were still monogamous after 30 years. I can’t imagine doing that, but they were happy.” In their research, which

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they’re continuing in a current study of younger gay men (, Lowen and Spears figured they’d be able to sort couples into categories and build models for different types of gay male relationships. But how couples managed things was all over the place. Being open at the beginning of a relationship wasn’t indicative of being open later. Some couples were still in love but didn’t have sex at all. Most of the couples they interviewed were over 40, so you’d figure that the AIDS crisis would affect their behaviour. But Lowen says that other research suggests gay couples didn’t manage their relationships much differently after AIDS/HIV

where gay people are legally equal—and somewhat more socially equal—with their straight peers, the younger generation may be more likely to adopt “straight” attitudes. But perhaps long-term relationships between men eventually erode early conventional or idealistic notions. If about 50 percent of gay couples are really monogamous, you can imagine that relationships of between, say, one and five years, when passions are still fresh, drive up that number. Gay relationships of 10, 20 or 30 years might be totally different beasts. “What we’ve found so far is that it’s probably a life-course factor rather than a generational

“There’s a set of men who are attracted by traditional notions of marriage, But there’s a set of married men who are operating around queer principles. They have no trouble having nonmonogamous relationships.” became a concern. If what was then a lifeand-death situation didn’t make the open couples more monogamous, why would marriage? But Lowen, who came of age when monogamy was totally not cool, suspects it is affecting the younger generation. “I think younger gay men will be much more traditional in what they want,” he says. “The idea of having kids is more mainstream for them, and I would assume going along with that is the notion of monogamy.” Sure, growing up in a world

factor,” says Barry Adam, an activist and sociology professor at the University of Windsor. Adam’s forthcoming paper, written with Adam Green from the University of Toronto, contrasts straights and gays in how they manage monogamy and marriage. “Younger gay men seem to come into their first relationships carrying a lot of ideas from heterosexual relationships about how to conduct relationships,” says Adam. “Over time, there’s a tendency to let go of that notion or, at least, to modify it. With

straight couples, we didn’t see any of that happening. They were operating on the old system. If the straight couples were nonmonogamous, it was a shameful secret.” In an earlier study, Adam found that many gay couples start off with a period of monogamy, often two to three years, but sometimes shorter or longer. That period of trust-building may be more important than any ceremony or piece of paper. “The marriage may provide a symbolic confirmation of the process, but it’s the emotional grounding that’s critical,” says Adam. After this grounding period, gay men often start acknowledging the possibility of sex outside the relationship. These discussions might be as innocent as both men commenting about a cute guy they see on the street or as pragmatic as discussing whether they can bring sex partners into a shared home. Adam has also noticed that married gay couples tend to fall into two camps. “There’s a set of men who are attracted by traditional notions of marriage and want to affirm traditional and more heterosexual standards,” he observes. “But there’s a set of married men who are operating around queer principles. They have no trouble having nonmonogamous relationships.” Timing and life experience must also be influences. If a couple has been together for a decade before marriage, vows might be less likely to have an impact on their relationship. For example, Lowen, who married Spears just a year ago, told me the wedding didn’t affect his own perception of his commitment, though it did affect the way acquaintances treated him when they found out he was married. Also, the attitude toward monogamy may depend on how old and experienced each person was when the relationship began. Someone who enters a relationship after an extended period of singledom might be much less likely to give up other

men in those initial grounding years than someone who became attached at a younger and more naïve age. “I fell for my partner pretty hard, pretty fast,” says Paul, 31, who has been with his current boyfriend for a year. “We had a romantic summer that was very intoxicating.” Despite this headlong attraction, the couple have been open from day one. “During a particularly busy

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time for both of us last fall, when we weren’t going on any other dates, we joked, ‘We’re not monogamous, we’re just busy,’” Paul says with a laugh.



onogamy was something

Sure, he’d get married if he

a younger Paul thought

had to “for immigration pur-

was inevitable. In his early 20s,

poses or some other substantial

though, he realized he was find-

legal need.” But, just as someone

ing it “impossible to stop sleep-

puts off buying a wrench until

ing with other people,” even

the kitchen sink starts leaking,

when he was in a relationship.

the day Paul seriously contem-



plates marriage remains purely

and unapologetic, has played

hypothetical. And marriage likely wouldn’t have any effect on Paul’s having sex outside the relationship. The most important thing, he says, is to be honest. His partner knows he’s having sex with other people, and those who peruse his online profile know he’s in a relationship. “There are a lot of folks who are lonely and looking for a companion, and it would

a much bigger part in Paul’s relationships than the legalization of same-sex marriage.

be unfair for me to suggest I’m available for that when I’m not.” As long as everybody knows the rules, that sounds great. Except we live in a world where the rules keep changing.

TALK BACK. Feel free to share your comments on IN or articles in the magazine by emailing us at

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That’s a Wrap! Cool Coats That Bring on a Warm Front

Photography: Adam Webster creative direction: assistant stylist: Brandon Pollard models: Sage and Gleb (Velocci Models) grooming: monica pavez

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Bundled up Coat: Rag & Bone hat, scarf: Roots

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Plaid tidings Peacoat: Theory Scarf: Banana Republic Trousers, Shirt: H&M Bag: Paul Smith

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Slick fix Coat: Sons of Odin Shirt, Trousers: Cheap Monday Belt: J. Lindeberg hat: H&M Gloves: Old Navy Necktie: French Connection

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Cold comforts (left ) Motocross Jacket: Alexander Wang scarf: Hugo Boss Boots: GH Bass & Co. Jeans: Banana Republic cap: J. Crew Touch-screen Gloves: Merona (right) Motocross Jacket: Hugo Boss pants: Cheap Monday scarf: Massimo

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Charles William Bush

Arts & Entertainment

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Arts & Entertainment


f m o r s n o s es Joan Rivers By Jim Brosseau


s gay icons go, they don’t get much bigger—or louder— than Joan Rivers. You want to talk bitchy? She wrote the book, literally. Listening to her critique a celebrity’s fashion sense, you couldn’t help but be reminded of your own dinner conversations with friends or chatter at the bar. And there was something more than a wee bit familiar about her obsession with great grooming and impeccable style. Okay, I’m borrowing some well-worn notions about what it means to be gay. But what’s undeniable was the chord Rivers struck within the LGBT community almost from the moment she rose to fame. She was, after all, on the outside looking in—no one’s idea, certainly when she came up, of what a lady should be. She was brash, loud, irreverent and utterly fearless. In a world that had a lot less tolerance for outsiders than it does today, the comedienne had to struggle for acceptance of the artist she was. Gay people and others who didn’t conform to society’s norms got that. And they rewarded Rivers—who died unexpectedly at 81 on Sept. 4—with their unshakeable loyalty. She never forgot their faith in her

and often remarked, with her signature abandon: “I always know if I get eight gay men in the front row, it’s going to be a great show.” Rivers was a champion of issues important to the LGBT community. She even went so far as to preside at the wedding of a same-sex couple (yes, ordained minister was but one of the many titles possessed by the actress, TV host, author, etc.). I was lucky to interview Rivers for a magazine Q&A early in my career. She was quick, bright and, unlike many people in comedy who only elicit laughs from a script, naturally funny. I’ll never forget her response, without missing a beat, when I asked if there were a question she’d always wished a reporter would pose. Her simple reply: “May we see you naked?” My personal proof of the Rivers thoughtfulness so widely spoken about when she died came shortly after my interview was published. She’d found my home address and sent a handwritten thank-you note on her personal stationery. (It’s a note I’ve kept and tell my partner to treasure as I do should anything ever happen to me.) From then on, she greeted me as an old friend if I ventured backstage for a hello after one of her performances. She was desperate to get her shows just right and

welcomed any suggestions on making them sharper. On one occasion, she thanked me profusely when I suggested a line would have more impact if she used a different product name—I won’t go into detail— in one of her jokes about gay men. She could be merciless with us and we loved it, knowing we were in on the joke, that she batted those mile-long eyelashes at us with nothing but pure affection. What I’ll miss about Joan Rivers is the same thing a lot of others within the LGBT community will, too: her openness about the person she was. She didn’t strive for a political correctness that, coming from her, would have felt totally inauthentic. Yes, she crossed the line now and then, and a few of her one-liners could be just too biting for some. But as she told me all those years ago: “I love it when I’m in a theatre situation, and maybe three percent come out totally shocked. That means you’re still pushing barriers. When everybody loves you, you’re finished.” No, Joan, you weren’t universally loved. But among those whose path through life has been more curvy than straight and narrow, you’ll always hold a special place. Yes, you could be a bitch, but you were always our bitch.

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Cultural Calendar

november 2014

Events of LGBT Interest Across Canada



Toronto-born artist Alan Belcher takes his talent across the border to Chicago’s The Suburban art gallery for a sizzling solo exhibition called “Pieces.” In response to today’s cutthroat art market, Belcher commissioned a faithful reproduction of Francis Bacon’s “Three Studies of Lucien Freud” and sliced it into segments large and small (including “Bacon Bit,” pictured).


These candid photos of female masculinity by Los Angelesbased SD Holman (including self-portrait, pictured) arrive this month at the Canadian Gay and Lesbian Archives in downtown Toronto.

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indigo girls

“BUTCH: Not Like the Other Girls”

lips and lashes

Take a proverbial peek behind the curtain as Toronto’s top divas prepare for a big drag show with the help of their costume designer. Proceeds from the fundraiser at Toronto’s Buddies in Bad Times go to the Canadian Cancer Society.

Don Enright

Along with traditional classics by composers Berlioz and Prokofiev, the Edmonton Symphony Orchestra boasts a stellar lineup of talent this season, including a rare mustn’t-miss session with U.S. folk duet Indigo Girls (Amy Ray and Emily Saliers, pictured) at the Winspear Centre.


8 queerrites reading series

Calgary’s Third Street Theatre presents a reading of “Dear Mr. Klein” by playwright Bruce Chambers. First produced in 2004, the play addresses a controversial chapter in Alberta’s queer history, when premier Ralph Klein refused to accept sexual orientation as prohibited grounds for discrimination.

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the queer Sentence

At this year’s Victoria Writers Festival on Vancouver Island, a panel of local scribes will be discussing “What, if anything, makes queer women’s writing distinct?” Expanding on Virginia Woolf’s notion of a “women’s sentence,” they will also consider whether there’s such a thing as a “lesbian sentence.” Panelists include “Steeling Effects” author Jane Byers (pictured).

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Bruce Monk


Concert Hour Ballet

Bringing professional dance to Manitoba youth who might not otherwise have an opportunity to experience it, this two-week tour features a lecture followed by a fully staged ballet. Hats off to the Royal Winnipeg Ballet’s senior students, who not only present a mixed repertoire but also do the heavy lifting typically left to a technical crew.

577 Yonge Street, Toronto, Ontario M4Y 1Z2 T 416-966-6969 | shop online David Cooper


“Avenue Q”

The smash-hit Broadway musical comes to Vancouver’s Granville Island Stage. Intended for mature audiences, the Sesame Street-esque romp through a New York neighbourhood tackles tricky subjects like sexuality and Internet porn. One song, “If You Were Gay,” is sure to leave everyone feeling warm and fuzzy.


Michael Cooper

Mint Media is Canada’s premier LGBT magazine publisher and integrated marketing agency.


centre stage gala

Scouting the country’s next generation of top operatic talent, the Canadian Opera Company hosts its annual competition and gala at the Four Seasons Centre in Toronto. Before a packed auditorium, contestants vie for cash prizes and a coveted spot in COC’s Ensemble Studio training program for young opera professionals. Think Canadian Idol but way classier (2013 winner Karine Boucher pictured).

Working across multiple platforms including print, online, digital and video, we publish gay media that transcends the stereotypes typically associated with the LGBT community. We combine the strength of our brands, passion of our peers and breadth of experience to produce compelling content and to help support meaningful change in the community. We are true to you.

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art & culture

FLASHBACK November 2012

Better Than Ever


hey are the pillars of a nation’s law enforcement, the brave men and women of the Royal Canadian Mounted Police. When duty calls, they answer. Two years ago this month, LGBT troops from the B.C. RCMP saw it as their duty to join the It Gets Better campaign, which was designed to help young people grappling with their sexual identity. The troops’ 10-minute YoutTube video ( has had more than 264,000 views. Well done, troops!

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