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JUNE 5 - 11, 2009

PGN: Strange item from your childhood bedroom? RR: Well, it would have to be the Michael Jackson doll and the Miss Piggy doll I stole from my sister. Uh, I still have them now ... PGN: Speaking of stealing your sister’s dolls, how was coming out? RR: I think because of the creative world we lived in, it was never a problem. My parents always stressed that it was important to be myself. At the same time, we were taught that as inner-city youths, and especially as African Americans, we represented more than ourselves. They wanted us to be ambassadors for not just ourselves and our family, but for our community. So I was taught

Q Puzzle Damaged Goodies Across

1. Vowels of Sappho 5. City where they sing “Hello, Dalai”? 10. Razor feature 14. Blackball 15. Made easier to bear 16. Province of Spain 17. Antifur org. 18. Bikini not just for women 19. Like fine wine 20. Global gaydom? 23. Don Juan and Casanova 24. “Odd Girl Out” author 26. Come together 27. Line of Todd Oldham dresses? 30. Christopher of “Superman” 31. Shark foe in “West Side Story” 32. Dame Edna 35. VCR remote button 36. Once more 38. Dress with a flared bottom 39. Quick tug 40. Milk money?



to be proud of myself, and that included all parts of me. And most of my friends and peers were fellow dancers, so there were a lot of openly gay people around me. PGN: You’re around the smell of chocolate every day. Name three other scents you love. RR: I love the smell of lemons. I love the smell of hydrangeas and lilacs and I love the smell of strawberries cooking. PGN: Any distinguishing marks? RR: When I was 16, I got a tattoo. I got in so much trouble for it. My best friend at the time and I had the same name, so we got matching tattoos. Fortunately, even though people called me Bobby at the time, I took into consideration that I might not want to be Bobby all my life, so I 43. Maugham’s “Cakes and ___ “ 44. “Guys and Dolls” co-creator Burrows 45. Messing around the “Will & Grace” set 48. Women’s patriotic org. 51. Be in a bee 55. Simpson trial judge Lance 56. Communion need at Metropolitan Community Church 59. Grazing land 60. Fingers that stimulate? 63. Quote as a reference 64. What you shoot in the air 65. Stats on a stallion 66. Lorca’s eight 67. “Pardon me” 68. Cancun coin


1. Medium skill 2. 1939 Cukor movie 3. Couple in the back seat? 4. Drummers beat them 5. Heads up 6. Condoms, in slang 7. Dating from 8. Ward of “Once and Again” 9. Speak off the cuff 10. Noble in government, once 11. Last name in out talk-show

had Robert put on my right arm. PGN: My first crush was ... RR: Intense. He ended up being my first experience. It was a challenge to myself. I knew what I wanted and made it happen. I can be a bit of a vixen. PGN: Best karaoke song? RR: “Do That to Me One More Time” by Captain and Tennille. PGN: Any hobbies? RR: I collect soil from places I’ve traveled. PGN: Last time you cried? RR: Coming back from Paris. I was watching the in-flight movies and they were entertaining, but they were all so tragic! I watched “Marley & Me” and Will Smith’s “Seven Pounds.” I was weeping in my seat. hosts 12. Double-checks 13. Split one in the locker room 21. Give the slip to 22. One way to have one’s meat 23. Indian leader 25. It holds your head up 27. Lend a hand 28. Buffalo’s lake 29. “Death in Venice” author Thomas 33. Weathercock 34. Rowlands of “An Early Frost” 37. Become frayed 39. Versatile vehicle 41. “Uh-oh!” of the Bard’s day 42. Dramatist Henrik 45. Music of the the Village People 46. Moral code 47. Telephone location 48. Restaurant chain owner Gary 49. “Ragged Dick” writer Horatio 50. More ready to get plucked 52. Skip a syllable 53. Yorkshire city 54. Wonder Woman weapon 57. Leaky tire sound 58. Maupin setting for tales 61. Corp. bigshot 62. Keystone lawman


PGN: Single? RR: No, I have a partner, Chad. We met online. I was sleepless in Philadelphia, and came across his photo. I pursued him and we had our first date and have been together ever since. It’s been five-and-a-half years. PGN: Who would you like to sit next to at a dinner party? RR: Singer, songwriter, pianist and civil-rights activist Nina Simone. She was such a passionate person. I don’t think she got as much credit as she should have. People are still sampling her work today. She was not a very censored person: She would just say what was on her mind, and she made some songs that were shocking choices at the time. Songs like “Four Women,” “Sinnerman” and “To be Young, Gifted and Black.”

She started out playing classical piano and had her concert debut when she was 12. During the performance, her parents, who were sitting in the front row, were moved to the back of the hall to make way for white people. She refused to play until her parents were moved back to the front. Her memory of the incident is what got her involved in the civil-rights movement. PGN: Life motto? RR: I’ll give you something from my book and that is, “Free ain’t free.” Meaning that you have to work for everything you get. It’s worked so far for me. ■ To suggest a community member for “Family Portraits,” write to: Family Portraits, 505 S. Fourth St., Philadelphia, PA 19147 or

PGN June 5 - 11, 2009 edition  

The Philadelphia Gay News covers news and entertainment serving the GLBT community in the greater Philadelphia region and beyond.

PGN June 5 - 11, 2009 edition  

The Philadelphia Gay News covers news and entertainment serving the GLBT community in the greater Philadelphia region and beyond.