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Mini Mint Oct/Nov 2010 Chicago's LGBTQA Magazine www.mintmale.com

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13 Mixteco 04 Chris Hill

Mixteco, in Chicago, raises the bar on savory molĂŠ and other Mexican favorites.

Joey Grant interviews local artist and former Mint Male model Chris Hill on his growth as an artist.

08 Barbara & Barbara

Powerful, creatively minded women give back to the community, local artists, and charities via haircuts and queer dance parties.

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25 The Serial Dater Local comedian, Adam Guerino dishes on his addiction to dating.


Joey Grant Publisher + Editor-in-Cheif Josh Shores Associate Publisher + Director of Fashion Lisa Kimmey Associate Publisher + Managing Editor Christina Burton Creative Director + Editorial Design Jennifer Schnoes Executive Editor + Editorial Design Assistant Bret Grafton Director of Photography Leon Andrew Hensley Photographer courtesy of A/S/L Media Lauren Canino Advertising Sales Agent

10 Bartender's

Diaries + Perfect

Contributing Writers Joey Grant Lisa Kimmey Bret Grafton Sheeri Weyers Adam Guerino

Margarita

Paintings featured on page 12 were created by Anton Jacobs/ jaku1920@gmail.com

Seasoned bartender, Bret Grafton, digs on bachelorette parties from an outsider's point of view.

* All Images of Chris Hill are by Bret Grafton

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by, Joey Grant

1. What inspired your interests in the arts? My interest in the arts was fostered by a lot of positive exposure ranging from family to some very special teachers. My brother was always the artist growing up though, and I admired his ability and passion for drawing. Luckily, I found out later that there would be room for two artists in the family. More importantly, what has kept me interested in the arts is the feeling I get when I’m creating. In my opinion, I feel we are often disillusioned to believe that we are all so connected in the 21st century with all the advancements in technology. But in all honesty, I’ve never felt more truly connected to the world than when I’m alone creating something. That feeling I get during the creative process has me hooked. 2. What is your favorite medium to work with? How did I know you were going to ask that? I’ve had a lot of professors, mentors, and artists tell me that if I want to be successful, I need to devote myself to a specific medium. Maybe they are right. Maybe they are not. Simply put, that just isn’t how I operate as an artist. My creative process almost always has to start with a concept in which case I will then make decisions on what media is going to be best for investigating that idea. Ink, chalk, paint, digital photography, and time based mediums are what I’m most comfortable with, but I’m not afraid to learn new processes if that’s what the work calls for. 3. What are your future goals? I plan on making a sandwich after this interview. Does that count? 4. What inspires your work? People have always been my inspiration. Whether I’m reflecting my own personal experiences or challenging social constructions, my inspiration will always come from living and questioning. A lot of my work comes from other people’s experiences, but all of the content is intended to be universal.

5. Who are some of your favorite artists? Marry Ellen Mark, Richard Avedon, Eric Fischl, David Hockney, Carolee Schneemann, Jeff Koons, Ernesto Neto, Banksy, Keith Haring, Olafur Eliason, Dan Hill, Emily Denis, Silvia Gonzalez 6. What are some of your greatest challenges as an artist? I think one of the greatest challenges for me as an artist is maximizing my visual articulateness. When I make something I want to make sure the meaning is not easily mistranslated. I don’t think that it is entirely possibly considering every viewer brings a different set of experiences to a work of art, but that is part of the beauty. Nothing I make is meant to be an answer, but a re-contextualized question. 7. How do you think others perceive your art? I think my art makes a lot of people uncomfortable. That’s fine. 8. What is it about your art that separates you from other artists in the community? Having a unique aesthetic is something that has naturally developed for me over time. There is no way to separate yourself completely in such a visually saturated culture, but I’d like to think I have an interesting juxtaposition of influences and experience that keeps my work fresh. 9. What’s your favorite thing to do in Chicago during the fall? Well, this is my first fall in Chicago, but I would have to say anything active or outside. 10. What's something most people don't know about you? My first pet was a turtle and I named her “Beautiful, Beautiful, Beautiful”. She ran away.

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Center on Halsted Fundraiser @ Spacio ft. Ronnie Kroell

Photography by Bret Grafton


Giving Back to the Community one Queercut and Dance Party at a Time by Lisa Kimmey If you’re looking for an affordable haircut accompanied with an ice cold beer, you need look no further than Barbara&Barbara. So who are the Barbaras? In the owners’ own words, “Barbara&Barbara started merely as a brainstorm on the most quintessential lesbian name.” Kara Wabbel and Sierra Berquist are the “dykes” that have brought Barbara&Barbara to fruition. What began as a simple plan of having an art space dedicated to queer artists and friends funded solely by $20 haircuts has evolved into a fully functioning hair parlor in the heart of Logan Square (3131 W Logan Blvd). What’s on the menu: $20-$30 haircuts which include a wash, cut, blow job and beer. The Barbaras are able to keep costs down with

their straightforward approach of offering cuts and color only. The full menu can be found at their website. They take appointments and welcome walk-ins with open arms. Don’t worry, the Barbaras didn’t stop there. After you get your haircut, if you’re itching for a quality queer dance party, you’ve got it. Queerer Park is comprised of Kara Wabbel (Barbara Butch & Unisexy), Sierra Berquist (Big Business), and Carlin Thomas (Black Gold). These three have decided that Chicagoans deserve a seamless dance set and sizable floor on which to get down all in the name of the community, but on a weekend night. Queerer Park has been providing Chicago with a killer dance party on the last Friday of every month since December of 2009. Their parties bring in 200+ people and provide a safe place for the queer community to dance to quality music from experienced DJs in a crowd of


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QUEERER PARK Photo by Leon Andrew Hensley

all around good people. Much like Barbara&Barbara, Queerer Park parties stemmed from the founders’ interest in providing support to local community organizations by utilizing their creativity and simultaneously having a great time. Every month, Queerer Park chooses a local organization that a portion of the party’s drink proceeds will go to. Some of the organizations they have supported thus far include Chicago Books to Women in Prison, Transformative Justice Law Project, Camp Trans, Team USA, and various others. Their parties are set to the sounds of electronica, indie, house, rock, and hip hop music. The diversity in the music compliments the diversity in the crowd and at the end of the party, no one goes home unsatisfied.

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Photography by Bret Grafton


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The Bartender Diaries by Bret Grafton There are roving packs that hit gay bars like giant balloons filled with glitter make-up, desperation, and Cosmopolitan cocktail mix; we like to call them bachelorette parties. I blame Sex and the City. Seriously, there is something about Carrie Bradshaw and her besties that inspire the most mild-mannered brides to go totally apeshit when out among the gays, and add to that the gleeful schadenfreude of single girls in the wedding party who are more than eager to iphone capture a bride’s sloppiest moments for future extortion. Throw in a dash of hot, but unavailable, flirty guys and the night can go from zero to apocalypse after one round of purple-hooters. Watch the bouncers- nothing makes the headsets crackle like a bunch of girls in toilet paper veils trying to live out the best moments from a Cameron Diaz movie. Once, I had a bride actually pull me out from behind the bar so she could give me a lap-dance. This experience was doubly uncomfortable because she wasn’t very good at it, and because her homemade tiara of sextoys kept smacking me about the face. I’ve had to suck lifesavers off t-shirts, play games of hide and seek or pin the tail on the bride (don’t ask), and I’ve helped too many poor, over-indulged girls into cabs hoping halfheartedly that they made it home before puking in the backseat. All the while her “friends” continue to play grab the ass with my homos, or try and climb atop my bar and show off their best stripper moves.

So ladies, and I mean this with all the love in the world, let this ritual go. Bachelorette and Bachelor parties are recipes for disaster. Why? Because that’s the point. Everyone is supposed to black out and do a bunch of crap they regret, but why start your marriage that way? My suggestion- throw a big joint party at one of your favorite hot spots and invite everybody. Drink good tequila. I know people find the mighty Agave a little scary, but a lot of hangovers can be eliminated by cutting out the processed sugars of cheap drinks and mixers made from artificial juices. A nicely distilled white tequila and lots of fresh lime juice will give you a good buzz, without too much headpounding in the morning. The night before your wedding should be an extended foreplay session, not a Dionysian bacchanal. Try a couple of my Perfect Margaritas (recipe below) surrounded by your best friends and then cap off the night with your favorite person in the world and a couple of body-shots in a quiet corner. These events are so much more fun with the person you love, rather than the stripper you bought. Keep it PG (above the shirt)-- a quick kiss at the neck for salt, drink the shot chilled, then pass the lime between your lips. Having a joint party might seem less last night of your single life scandalous, but better to seduce your soon to be significant other all over again than see yourself on Youtube the next morning with your dress over your head.

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O C E T MIX

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Photography by Bret Grafton

by Sheeri Wey

Mixteco will make you a fan of mole sauce, even if like me, your eyes generally pass over it on most Mexican menus. Your choice of oaxacan black, green and coloradito moles covers the taste bud spectrum of any mole aficionado. The love affair of complex, rich flavor will leave you a whimsical damsel in mole distress. Start with the freshly made, creamy guacamole and chips or the Tamales De Pollo; both are savory and will only whet your appetite for the main course to follow. The Borrego en Mole Negro is a rack of lamb, best served medium and not a bite will be left behind. The rich mole negro is smokey and spicy with a hint of cinnamon, its velvety richness wraps itself around both the lamb and garlic mashed potatoes to complete a dish that is neverending in flavor. Another dish that is sure to please for anyone jumping on the recent pork bandwagon is the Chuleta En Mole Coloradito. This mole while subtle in spice, will knock you over with flavor. Here, the complexity of each mole is handled with care, and the Coloradito is not left out. The pork chop is cooked to perfection and remains tender and moist. Again accompanied by garlic mashed potatoes, Chef Raul Arreloa knows how to tantalize your taste buds. Mixteco will leave you satisfied and vying for more of its amazing and savory dishes. You will swear to go back if not just to enjoy your new favorite mole, but to try everything on the menu. Bring your friends and your favorite bottle to this friendly authentic Mexican favorite. Need I tell you, make a reservation? The word is out on this gem, why wait when you can settle right into head over heels flavor!

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Chances @ Hideout Chances Dances CULT Formerly Known As Queer Social Meetup Queerer Park STARDUST


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L A I R SE DATER An Adventure into Singledom by Adam Guerino

Hi. My name is Adam Guerino. I'm 26 and I'm a serial dater. It has been thirty days since my last impersonation of a long term relationship. I'm single. I’m incredibly single. I don’t even have suitors in waiting. I'm “singler” than I've been in months, yet it's been over a year since I've had a serious relationship. This isn't a personals ad, a casting call nor a cry for help; it's a sobering reality. Every time I had a new guy on my arm, my friends would respond "Who is this? I can't keep up!" I'd be so offended, and proclaim my love for said stranger before trailing off when it came to remembering his name. I even dated a guy for a month without knowing he was a vegetarian. We’d had dinner together at least ten times. I realize now, I didn't know this person; I wasn't dating them-I was dating dating. I've tried word association to understand this addiction. I replace the words "relationship" and "date" with "crack cocaine." For example: This isn't like the last crack cocaine I had, this crack cocaine is different and it's only one crack cocaine. I can quit anytime.

I've set the parameters for my social commentary, my science experiment about singledom and now I need to crawl into the test tube and try not to claw the eyes out of my own reflection. I'll spare you the moral of this story and instead offer a threat; a battle cry: I see you Loneliness. And I'm coming for you. You're not going to scare me away with chilly winter nights perfect for cuddling. When I fall in love, it will be for more than a few months, damn it! Hi. My name is Adam Guerino. I'm 26, and I'm a serial dater. It has been thirty days since my last impersonation of a long term relationship.

Photography by Bret Grafton

So I'm single. Intentionally. Turning down even innocent coffee dates with the understanding that it will be like creeping over the hill of a roller coaster. It doesn't matter if the car stays on the tracks, it will be a plunge, a thrill ride and I'm an adrenaline addict. If I think I am meeting a friend and find they think it's a date, I will scream and run away. Controversially, I will not sleep with the same person twice. Having a "friend with benefits" is just a trick; watered down crack cocaine is still crack cocaine, isn't it? As far as sleeping with people, well, I'm an addict but I'm still human.


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Rip out the pages below and arrange them in the following order to create a 17" x 22" poster of your favorite hunk, Chris Hill. Take a photo of you and your new poster and tag it on our Facebook page. The person with the most original usage of this poster will be featured in the upcoming Mini Mint. Be creative and we can't wait to see what happens!

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October Mini Mint