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April 30-May 13 . 2011

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qnotes

April 30-May 13 . 2011


inside April 30-May 13, 2011 Vol 25 No 26

9

12 news & features

  6 News Notes: Regional Briefs   8 More than just a ladies’ night

opinions & views   4   4   4   5

Editor’s Note QPoll T-Notes General Gayety

connect goqnotes.com

twitter.com/qnotescarolinas

a&e/life&style   9 11 12 12 13 14 16 17 19

Out in Print Beyond the music Help pets beat summer heat Meet Mecklenburg’s ‘Top Dog’ Spots for Spot Audiophile Tell Trinity Out in the Stars Q events calendar

contributors this issue

Leah Cagle, Robbi Cohn, Matt Comer, Charlene Lichtenstein, Lainey Millen, Leslie Robinson, Terri Schlichenmeyer, SMP Wire, David Stout, Trinity

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April 30-May 13 . 2011

qnotes




VIEWS

editor’s note by matt comer matt@goqnotes.com

by robbi cohn :: qnotes contributor

If two things are equal to a third thing…

I’ve been blown away by the magnitude of evil emanating from Congress and the North Carolina General Assembly since Republicans took over in November. Yes, I said “evil.” I don’t use the word lightly. It’s a serious accusation and I understand that. But, I mean it. What the GOP seeks to do or is already doing — both nationally and in states across the nation, including North Carolina — is truly evil. I recently addressed such thoughts in a post on my Facebook profile, writing, “The GOP’s new mission statement: ‘We belong to our Father, and we want to carry out our Father’s desires.’ See John 8:44.” The status update was a facetious and multi-part satire of the religious “family values” spin Republicans sometimes give to their agenda. The “Father,” of course, isn’t God. Look up the passage for the context. A friend responded, accusing me of an ad hominem attack. “I expect better from you, Matt,” she wrote. No — that doesn’t work for me. See, I expect better from Republicans. I expect them to undertake initiatives that help and benefit the whole of the nation. Instead, every move Republicans have made thus far in their recent — and, if they keep it up, limited — stint in power has been harmful to the vast majority of people in this country. You can deny it, twist it and lie about it — i.e. “tax breaks will create new jobs” — all day long, but it won’t change facts. There’s a simple philosophical and mathematical truth that states if two things are equal to a third thing, then they are all equal to each other. It’s an amazingly simple

concept with powerful consequences and conclusions. GOP budgets both nationally and on the state level will forever change Medicare as we know it. They will reduce funding for all other sorts of healthcare programs. They will strip much-needed monies from both primary and secondary education. They will deny college students financial aid. They will cut food stamps and environmental protection services and emergency management agencies. The list of cuts keep going. At the same time, GOP proposals seek to reduce corporate tax rates. That’s despite the fact that dozens and dozens of mutli-billion dollar, multi-national companies raked in billions in profits this year without paying a cent in corporate income tax. Other GOP proposals seek to reduce the tax rate for the nation’s highest income earners. While millionaires and billionaires continue to make more and more money each year, Republicans seriously seek to fork over some of the lowest tax rates the rich have ever seen. Remember: if two things are equal to a third thing, then they are all equal to each other. The arithmetic seems simple in this case. Cutting services to families, children, students and the poor while giving massive tax breaks to those who already have everything seems pretty damn evil to me. Republican ideals, proposals and principles are evil. They are evil because they cause a tremendous amount of pain and harm to the least among us. Jesus would be ashamed. But, they don’t care. The GOP is serving a different kind of master. : :

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April 30-May 13 . 2011

t-notes Public accommodations = civil rights In many states, if a bill has not been passed through committee by a certain juncture, it’s considered dead. Such was the fate of Maryland House Bill 235, the Gender Identity Anti-Discrimination Act. This highly contentious bill garnered some support, but was also deemed by many to have been constructed with inappropriate language. Championed by Equality Maryland, National Center for Transgender Equality (NCTE), as well as by the National Gay & Lesbian Task Force (NGLTF), it mandated protections for trans individuals with respect to employment, housing and credit. Conspicuously missing, however, was one critical component of anti-discrimination legislation: public accommodations. The case Equality Maryland and its allies made was that including public accommodations was untenable given the state of Maryland politics and the decision was made to introduce the bill sans public accommodations protections. This choice led to a trans insurrection — activists both within and outside Maryland leapt to defend the importance of public accommodations and to make the case that a bill without these critical protections was not only insufficient, but counterproductive. What is meant by public accommodations? The kinds of things generally included are transportation facilities, schools, hospitals, malls, homeless shelters, restaurants, other retail areas and, of course, public bathrooms. After all trans activists have written about the bathroom issue, it must be obvious that a bill which leaves huge gaps in these critical areas does so because of all the misinformation that’s been put forth to scare people about purported predation by “trans-freaks” upon innocent women and children. There has never been any evidence to support or corroborate these allegations — they’re merely the ravings of uneducated doom predictors who preach fear as their daily message. And, isn’t this really where the resistance to public accommodations derives and finds root? The failure to include all of these aforementioned (and other) areas within the aegis of anti-discrimination language leaves huge gaps in both actual protections and in how the public perceives and interprets these protections. It may even be possible for those

predictors of doom to use such non-inclusion to bolster their baseless attacks leveled at trans persons and, mostly at trans women, a case of unadulterated transmisogyny. Am I saddened at the death of HB 235? No and yes. Yes, because of the dissension/lack of concord amongst trans advocates vis a vis the best way forward. But, my gut tells me “no,” because the repercussions and consequences of passing a bill without public accommodations language are potentially disastrous. One of the reasons trans advocates have become alienated from the larger LGBT community is due to the disparity of enacted legislation. According to the NGLTF website, if gender identity and sexual orientation are not bundled together for the initial anti discrimination bill, then a gap averaging 14.5 years exists between passage of laws protecting gay and lesbian individuals and passage of the same legislation that protects trans persons. Just as in Maryland, we are told to wait, be patient, give it time until the lawmakers and the public are “ready” to accept us. This is unacceptable given the length of time usually needed to revisit many of these pieces of legislation. The list of jurisdictions which have passed laws protecting gays and lesbians, yet which have not enacted laws to protect trans persons, is vast. One might think that, of course, New York and, especially Massachusetts, the first state to ratify marriage equality, would have taken steps to protect their trans citizenry, but the answer is no. I spoke with Robyn Webb, a Baltimore resident and a former board member for the International Foundation for Transgender Education (IFGE), just after the bill had died in committee. Her exact words were, “This is not a trans issue…this is an American issue.” Furthermore, she reminded me that the Baltimore and Montgomery County had already passed protections regarding gender identity which supported public accommodations as a critical area of concern. Had HB 235 passed, she and others residing in Baltimore and Montgomery County would have been subject to a curtailing of their individual civil rights. What kind of message do we send when we attempt to legislate poorly constructed

see T-Notes on 15


by leslie robinson :: qnotes contributor

Chests out, slogans on In my last column, I discussed the role T-shirts with slogans play in the battle over gay rights. It occurred to me, aside from the T-shirts I’ve read about that have caused ruckuses in schools and elsewhere, I don’t know what kinds of pro-gay and anti-gay Tshirts are available these days. Like a size XS T-shirt, ignorance doesn’t look good on me. So, I’m on the hunt. For snappy and snippy slogans. I googled “gay T-shirts” and landed on Zazzle.com, whose shirts for women include “I used to be a tomboy, but now I’m a fullgrown lesbian.” I want it. I want it now. I’m less inclined to wear the shirt that reads “Vagitarian: One whose sexual diet consists exclusively of vagina.” I’d have a hard time looking anyone in the eye while wearing that. Even at Pride. Were I bisexual, I couldn’t handle the shirt featuring a rooster and a cat and below them the words “I’ll take both.” Yup, a cock and a pussy. My face would display shades of red heretofore unknown. By contrast, I’d be happy to sport “God hates shellfish.” Then I could call out religious hypocrisy and wear it, too. The motto of the gay-owned company Queer Republic Tees is “Not your typical, lame-ass rainbow crap.” Hence the shirt for guys reading “Trick-o-matic. Just add booze.” One of the offerings for women says “Save a tree…eat a beaver.” Hmm, maybe I could pull that one off. I am environmentally minded. After the last column ran, I heard from BMP T-Shirts, also gay-owned, whose options include a shirt featuring a rental truck labeled “She-Haul.” The punch line is “The seconddate vehicle of choice.” I have no idea what that refers to. At Cafepress.com, a T-shirt sports a small guy in a sailor outfit and the words “Who’s ready for a little seaman?” For lesbians who also like, um, maritime themes, there’s a shirt with a female scuba diver and the slogan “Dykesville Divers: We don’t come up for air.” I’m drawn to “Pink sheep of the family” and “Gay marriage killed the dinosaurs.” If I had a toddler, he or she would be clad in “My mom is a Dykosaurus rex.” Now for the other side of the culture war. I typed in “anti-gay T-shirts” at Cafepress and sure enough, they sell those too, just not as many and the slogans are less than inspired.

VIEWS

general gayety

“Diversity sucks” opines one shirt; “Be happy, not gay” suggests another. One of the more clever offerings says “Celebrate diversity: Marry someone of the opposite gender.” The male and female symbols and the cross are included. A person so inclined can buy this design on a T-shirt, tank top, hoodie, mug and Christmas stocking. Ho, ho, ho. I googled “anti-gay T-shirts” and wound up where I started, at Zazzle. There — among options like “Obama makes me puke” and “Global Warming. Bullcrap” — was a shirt reading “Do not lie with a man as one lies with a woman; that is detestable. Leviticus 18:22.” A bit wordy for a slogan. Someone should chat with the author about that. At the same time, Zazzle sells a T-shirt that points out “Leviticus also said no hair cuts, but I guess we are skipping that.” Zazzle is covering its rear by covering everyone’s chest. Pro-gay, anti-gay, the money’s the same. Why are the anti-gay slogans flat? Is it accurate what we like to say about ourselves, that we’re more creative? Or, does truth offer better material with which to work? I could help the other side get snappier. But, Leviticus clearly says, “Thou shalt not be an idiot.” : : info:

LesRobinson@aol.com . generalgayety.com

April 30-May 13 . 2011

qnotes




BRIEFS

news notes: from the carolinas, nation and world compiled by Lainey Millen :: lainey@goqnotes.com | David Stout :: david@goqnotes.com | Matt Comer :: matt@goqnotes.com

Mayors co-chair LGBT choral event

RALEIGH — The spokesperson for the Triangle Gay Men’s Chorus (TGMC) said three North Carolina mayors have lent their support and names to a fundraiser benefiting his group, another local chorus and the local Susan G. Komen foundation chapter. On June 12, TGMC and the LGBT-friendly Common Woman Chorus will present the Triangle premiere “A Proclamation of Hope” featuring “Sing for the Cure,” world-renowned song cycle that honors breast cancer victims, survivors and their loved ones. The proceeds from the event, which occurs the same weekend as the Triangle Komen Race for the Cure, will be shared equally by Common Woman Chorus, TGMC and Komen for the Cure NC-Triangle, a local affiliate of the Susan G. Komen for the Cure foundation. Raleigh Mayor Charles Meeker, Durham Mayor William Bell and Chapel Hill Mayor Mark Kleinschmidt (pictured left to right) have all signed on as honorary co-chairs of the event. News anchors Debra Morgan (WRAL) and Frances Scott (WTVD) are also co-chairs. Stephen Melott, TGMC’s executive vice-president and marketing director, said he found each of the mayors’ offices open to working with the groups. Gov. Bev Perdue has also issued an official letter of welcome to the event. Melott says the governor might attend the event, if her schedule permits. — M.C.

Charlotte Guild welcomes D.C. officer

CHARLOTTE — The Charlotte Business Guild is bringing the U.S. Department of State’s Director of the Office of Civil Rights and Chief Diversity Officer John Robinson to its May 17 meeting at Crowne Plaza Hotel, 201 S. McDowell St. Robinson will present the topic: “Lessons Learned at The Department of State on Diversity Issues.” He will deliver a presentation relating to such current and vital subjects as: how leadership makes the difference for diversity effectiveness, the repeal of “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell,” Secretary of State Hillary Clinton’s inclusion of sexual orientation and gender identity in the State Department’s non-discrimination policy statements and the presentation of the 2009 Equal Employment Opportunity Award to Robert Gilchrist for outstanding leadership in improved personnel policies relating to LGBT employees. As part of the presentation, Robinson will review milestones reached on behalf of the LGBT population since 1950. Admission to the event is $20 and is open to the public. It includes appetizer, dinner entrees, dessert, coffee and tea. A cash bar is available, as well as free parking. Doors open at 5:30 p.m. Sponsors are the Human Rights Campaign, Equality North Carolina and Mecklenburg LGBT Political Action Committee. To make reservations or for more information, email guild@charlottebusinessguild.org or visit charlottebusinessguild.org. — L.M.

Fundraiser approaches

CHARLOTTE — “Forté!,” the annual blacktie fundraising gala of the Gay Men’s Chorus of Charlotte, will be held on May 7, 6:30-11:30 p.m., at the Morrison Atrium of the Mint Museum, 500 S. Tryon St. It features dinner, auctions and performances by the Chorus and its smaller ensemble, Seventh Son. Dancing and dessert follow. Tickets are $50 and must be purchased by May 4.



qnotes

For more information or to purchase tickets, visit gmccharlotte.org. — L.M.

Justice officials discuss bullying

CHARLOTTE — Assistant U.S. Attorney General Thomas Perez and U.S. Attorney for the Western District of North Carolina Anne Tompkins met with students on April 14 at Northwest School of the Arts to discuss bullying, hate crimes and civil rights issues. Perez and Tompkins spoke briefly before showing the Justice Department Civil Rights Division’s “It Gets Better” video, inspired by columnist Dan Savage’s It Gets Better Campaign. Perez is the head of the U.S. Department of Justice’s Civil Rights Division. He encouraged students to embrace diversity. Tompkins, a graduate of West Charlotte High School and a lesbian, also encouraged students to make their schools safer for all. Following the It Gets Better video, Perez and Tompkins took questions from students, most concerned with anti-LGBT bullying and what the Justice Department is doing to create safer schools. Last October, the U.S. Department of Education’s Office of Civil Rights announced new interpretations of federal civil rights laws. Some anti-LGBT discrimination, harassment and bullying is now considered a type of sexbased discrimination and falls under federal jurisdiction. Perez told students that such bullying and discrimination is often based on gender roles and stereotypes. Discrimination against LGBT and Muslim students are among his division’s fastest growing. Immediately following the assembly, Perez met with about a dozen student leaders from the school. He and Tompkins also met with leaders from the local LGBT community. — M.C.

Coastal Pride event to premiere

NAGS HEAD — OBX Pride will be held from June 24-26 and is now accepting applications for vendors, as well as sponsors.

April 30-May 13 . 2011

Sponsor packages are available at rates of $250, $500 and $1,500. Email organizers at obxpride@gmail.com to make sure that packages are still available at requested rates. Or, call 252-564-4456. They also welcome donations of any amount. The organization is a 501(c)(3) one, so contributions are tax deductible. Send checks payable to OBX, Inc., P.O. Box 1241, Manteo, NC 27954. For more complete information, visit obxpridefest.com. — L.M.

Triad Screening slated

GREENSBORO — The University of North Carolina at Greensboro’s MFA Media Studies students will present thesis works as part of their requirements for the program on May 5, 7-9 p.m., at the Weatherspoon Auditorium. A pre-screening reception begins at 6 p.m. “Between Friends and Family,” a documentary by Dir. Rick Dillwood, tells the story about a lesbian family and their sperm donor. Discussion follows the films. Dillwood was previously an eighth grade English teacher. He has also directed other works, such as “How to Make a Heartbeat,” which was premiered at the San Francisco International LGBT Film Festival in 2010. Its narrative followed a lesbian couple and their donor while they worked out the boundaries of their relationship. He also spends time at Production Photography, a collective of independent artists who aspire to elevate their craft. Due to mature content, parental guidance is recommended. The event is free. For more information, visit weatherspoon. uncg.edu. — L.M.

Triangle UNC hate crime was false

CHAPEL HILL — The chancellor of the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill announced on April 12 that an earlier report of an alleged anti-gay hate crime on his campus was a false report. Freshman Quinn Matney had told police he was attacked by a man on the university’s South Campus during the early morning hours of April 4. He said the man had branded him with an unidentified object and used an antigay slur. “The Department of Public Safety has determined that the alleged aggravated assault reported to campus last night did not occur,” UNC Chancellor Holden Thorp said in a statement. “That report, filed with campus police on April 5, was false. The University will not report it as a hate crime.” Thorp added, “It is important to recognize that incidents of harassment do occur. When they do, we take them seriously. We strive to foster a welcoming, inclusive and safe environment at Carolina.” Police have not commented on Matney’s motive for filing the false report. The incident will not be reported to federal authorities.

Matney has since been taken back to his home in Asheville to receive treatment, according to his father. Matney remains a student at UNC and has been charged with filing a false police report. The original story can be read online at goqnotes.com/10714/. — M.C.

Center to move

RALEIGH — After a successful year, The LGBT Center of Raleigh is moving to larger quarters at 411 Hillsborough St. The new digs will be more visible and will allow for more opportunities and services for the community, including, but not limited to additional on-site programming such as youth and senior group meetings; health-related classes; an expanded resource library; community events; and more meeting space for other like-minded community organizations. An opening night First Friday will be held on May 6 from 6-9 p.m. Artist Chad Hughes will be featured. Light refreshments will be provided. The grand opening follows on May 14 to coincide with the OutRaleigh Festival. For more information, email info@lgbt  centerofraleigh.com or visit lgbtcenterof  raleigh.com. — L.M.

Grads celebrate

RALEIGH — LGBT students at North Carolina State University are gearing up for their annual Lavender Graduation ceremony on May 12 at 3:30 p.m. at SAS Hall Auditorium, Room 2203), 1210 Varsity Dr. It is sponsored by the GLBT Center. This event celebrates the accomplishments and dreams of those who turn their tassel and embark on their post-graduate life. Participants also recognize the school for leadership, successes and achievements. Light refreshments will be served. For more information, call 919-513-1200, email glbtcenter@gmail.com or visit ncsu. edu/glbt. — L.M.

Western ALFA holds awards reception

HICKORY — ALFA, during its observance of National Volunteer Week, bestowed awards on a number of people who “went beyond the call of duty,” Community Outreach Manager Linda Sheehan said. The reception was held on April 19 at Taste Full Beans, 29 2nd St. NW, followed by the ceremony. Those who were honored for their service were: Distinguished Business Philanthropist, Youssef 242; Distinguished Youth Volunteer, Lelia Boyce; Angel Award, Brad Hutchinson; Consumer Advocate Volunteer, Linda Smallwood; Candlelight Award, Michael Stewart (Queenie Gabor); Distinguished Board Member, Leslie Cothren; and Steve Yount Memorial Award, Michelle Mathis. — L.M. info: Have news or other information? Send your press releases and updates for inclusion in our News Notes: editor@goqnotes.com.


National Taxpayers foot the bill for bias

WASHINGTON, D.C. — In their ongoing effort to defend the Defense of Marriage Act, House Republican leaders have contracted with the law firm King & Spalding at the rate of $520 per hour to argue that it’s right for the federal government to deny recognition to legally married same-sex couples. The contract caps the cost at $500,000 but can easily be increased upon further negotiations with the firm. Former Republican Solicitor General Paul Clement (pictured) is a partner at King & Spalding. He served under President George W. Bush as the government’s lawyer before the Supreme Court In a related move, Speaker of the House John Boehner endorsed a GOP plan to defund part of the Department of Justice because of the Obama Administration’s determination that DOMA is unconstitutional and legally indefensible. Boehner made his position known in response to a letter from Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi who had originally questioned the cost of the House’s intervention in the cases. — D.S.

Trans employment bill passed

HONOLULU, Hawaii — On April 19, the Hawaii House voted overwhelmingly for a bill prohibiting discrimination in employment on the basis of gender identity. The 45-4 vote followed the state Senate’s earlier approval

of the measure. At press time the bill was awaiting Gov. Neil Abercrombie’s signature. Hawaii law already protects transgender people from discrimination in housing and public accommodations. Sexual orientation discrimination is barred in employment, housing and public accommodations. — D.S.

percent more likely to try suicide than those who live in more liberal areas. — D.S.

The most powerful LGBTs

WASHINGTON, D.C. — The Employment Non-Discrimination Act, which would make workplace discrimination based on sexual orientation and gender identity illegal in most workplaces, has been introduced into both houses of the legislature this month. Currently, it is legal in 29 states to fire or refuse to hire someone for being lesbian, gay or bisexual, while transgender workers can be denied or refused jobs in 37 states. — D.S.

LOS ANGELES — Out magazine’s fifth annual “Power 50” list was released this month, ranking celebrities, moguls, activists and media figures that the magazine declares “the most influential gays and lesbians in America.” Apple’s acting CEO, Tim Cook, a new entry, topped the list this year. Other new entries include Houston Mayor Annise Parker and Chuck Wolfe, president and CEO of the Gay & Lesbian Victory Fund. The four openly gay and lesbian members of Congress and New York City Council Speaker Christine Quinn made the list, as did philanthropist Tim Gill and MSNBC commentator Rachel Maddow. The “Power 50” issue is on newsstands now. — D.S.

Conservative areas up suicide risks

Global

ENDA intro’d in Congress

NEW YORK, N.Y. — A landmark study involving nearly 32,000 Oregon 11th graders found that lesbian, gay and bisexual teenagers who live in conservative areas with fewer same-sex couples, registered Democrats and schools without anti-bullying protections for LGBT students are 20 percent more likely to attempt suicide than their counterparts in less conservative communities. The survey, led by Mark Hatzenbuehler, a Columbia University psychologist and researcher, also revealed that those factors raised the odds and were a substantial influence on suicide attempts even when known risk contributors like depression and being bullied were considered. Straight teenagers in conservative places were found to be nine

Boys sent to ‘straight’ camp

KUALA TERENGGANU, Malaysia — An international outcry erupted earlier this month when news broke that the education department of the conservative state of Terengganu was sponsoring a week-long camp for 66 boys deemed overly effeminate by their teachers. Reports said the camp employed a combination of physical education, religious teaching and guest speakers in a bid to prevent the boys from growing up gay or transgender. Education department director Razali Daud told the New Straits Times that he understands some will end up gay or trans anyway, but the state will do its best to limit the number. — D.S.

April 30-May 13 . 2011

qnotes




More than just a ladies’ night Charlotte’s FemmeFest 2011 promises a fun, fundraising celebration for all to enjoy by Leah Cagle :: leah@goqnotes.com

Out lesbian and former Christian music star will perform a this year’s FemmeFest, along with the band Grown Up Avenger Stuff (right).

As a booking agent for The Evening Muse, Lea Pritchard worked very hard to bring in a diverse collection of artists and musicians. After noticing a female presence in each of the bands during a show one night, a co-worker approached Pritchard and asked, “What is this? A ladies’ night?” As a musician, Pritchard had encountered this type of logic before. All it takes is one noticeable female on stage to deem a group a “chick band” and musical groups featuring one or more women are usually considered primarily for women. Women are often seen as “others” in the music industry, as an exception to the assumed male presence in musicianship. Even female headliners avoid using female opening acts. As an artist herself, Pritchard grew frustrated with these confining interpretations of the female role in music. So, drawing from past experiences of performing at women’s festivals around the country and a strong desire to have the female voice in music recognized, Pritchard and a few of her friends determined to join forces for a cause, to create a night for celebration of female musicianship. With the help of a few willing venues and supportive community groups such as The Charlotte Rollergirls, their dream began to grow and take shape. People responded enthusiastically to Pritchard’s pitch and the event jumped quickly from one venue to three. Despite its newbie status and terrible weather, FemmeFest’s first year was a wonderful success. Now, four years later, FemmeFest 2011 in Charlotte is gearing up for yet another night of fun and celebration. With more artists, more venues and more people expected to attend than



qnotes

April 30-May 13 . 2011

ever before, this year’s festival is a sure sensation. Attendees can enjoy a wide variety of styles from the musical minds of singers and bands such as Jennifer Knapp, Elizabeth and the Catapult, Donna Duncan and Reeve Coombs — just to name a few. Jennifer Knapp, one of the more well-known faces gracing the stage this year, has been a recent outspoken advocate for the LGBT community. Having reached immense commercial success in the mainstream Christian music world back in the late ‘90s and early 2000s, Knapp took a five-year sabbatical to the natural wilderness of Australia. Upon returning to the music scene in 2010, Knapp announced that she identifies as lesbian and has been in a loving, committed relationship with her girlfriend for eight years. Engaging in a series of written and televised interviews, Knapp sought to open the “coming out” door within Christian conversations and proudly declared herself as both a Christian and a lesbian. That same year Knapp released her newest album “Letting Go,” from which she will be performing at FemmeFest. Pritchard appreciates and respects the strong LGBT presence that has always supported FemmeFest. “There is always a really strong component of women like that — women who have come into their own sexuality identity, who are strong and know who they are, and are involved in the industry…They are always such an important component because they are just strong and wonderful.”

And, the famous faces are not the only ones to watch out for at this year’s musical celebration. Charlotte’s own Grown Up Avenger Stuff will be one of several bad-ass bands hitting the stage that you do not want to miss. This hometown indie rock band brings a bold yet quirky sound to their uniting message. “I don’t know if it really constitutes a philosophy. It’s a call. It’s not something that we need for survival but it’s something that all things and all cultures of times have made….and so we want things that make us whole people and mammals, we have some sort of a spiritual side and a need to share emotions in that way. And music to me is one of those things that unites us all,” they explained. Superhero clad lead singer Dierdre Kroener and her gifted trio of musicians “Mister Black,” Bradley Graham and John Tompsen combine serious talent and musicianship with a fun zeal for life and a positive message. “We just want to be positive and bold in this community and encourage everyone who’s out there playing…it’s much more important to just have fun while you’re doing it,” Kroener explained. The festival will be held Saturday, May 21 in the NoDa Arts District on the corner of North Davidson and 36th Sts. The bands will be featured in several locations including the Neighborhood Theatre, the Evening Muse, and the Green Rice Gallery, leaving festival-goers the freedom to meander from venue to venue, enjoying the musical tastes of their choice. As a one-night festival of music that “aims to reach, inspire, and strengthen our cultural community by showcasing the diverse work of emerging and established female voices throughout the region and beyond,” FemmeFest is truly a celebration of not only women, but of community. To this end, organizers will give all the proceeds to Relatives Crisis Shelter, a non-profit established to reach out to runaway, homeless and struggling youth and their families in the Charlotte community. Boasting a vibrant combination of family-friendly environment, food and drinks and great entertainment, FemmeFest aims to be a fun, kick-off to summer outing for anyone and everyone. To learn more about the artists mentioned in this article, check out their websites: Jennifer Knapp at jenniferknapp.com and Grown Up Avengers Stuff at grownupavengerstuff.com. For more information on FemmeFest 2011, including on how to purchase your tickets, visit charlottefemmefest.org. Tickets are on sale now for $15 in advance or $20 the day of the show. : :


by terri schlichenmeyer :: qnotes contributor

It Gets Better High school, it seems, was built for drama. Maybe it’s because of hormones or because everybody’s searching for who they are or the person they’ll become, but one thing’s certain: Mean Girls, jocks and cheerleaders, nerdy kids, geeks and bullies generally cannot co-exist in peace. And, therein lies a problem, particularly if you’re on the receiving end of brutality, teasing or ostracism. Not only does that stuff hurt, but it makes life so unpleasant that you can sometimes see only one way to stop it… Columnist Dan Savage, with his husband Terry Miller and a friend, decided to do something about that. In “It Gets Better,” they explain what happened and how their un-splashy video became a tidal wave of support. Just a hundred videos. That’s the response that Dan Savage and Terry Miller hoped they’d get from a YouTube post they made in the aftermath of several suicides by LGBT teens. In an AHA! moment, Savage had realized that those kids had no vision of a future and no idea that things get better — hence, the video. But, one video begat two, then a hundred, then a computer crash, a presidential

message and a movement. In this book, they gather notable messages to LGBTQ teens; some poignant and some surprises. Like teens who see only “one way out” of the torment, many It Gets Better posters tell of trying to take their own lives at 15, 12, even 10 years old. But, as one pointed out, there are many things she would have missed, were she successful. Another poster begs teens not to make him miss the chance to know them. The respondents came from around the world: the U.S. and Canada, England, Australia, Iraq. Politicians weighed in, as did ministers, doctors, dancers, soldiers and teachers. The posters were gay and straight, parents and friends. One offered to send readers a letter of support. One gave the website for an alternative school. Some saw being gay as a gift. One man said he was his own bully. The posters are varied, but the message is the same: find your people. Hang in there — it will be over soon. Don’t suffer in silence. We need you to live. “It Gets Better” is one of those books that slams you from emotion to emotion in six pages or less. Readers will get teary, they’ll laugh, nod their heads, gasp and want

to scream. And this book isn’t just for teens: adults who need it and read it will find comfort here, too. The only caveat is that this book is (somewhat) targeted to middle-schoolers, but it may be too much for them to handle. What’s written here is often profane, in-your-face and generally pretty grown-up, so caution should be used before giving this to a kid who isn’t ready for it yet. Still, if you know someone that needs this book, you’ll feel compelled to act. After you’ve read it yourself, you’ll know that “It Gets Better” gives him or her a better chance of surviving. : :

info: “It Gets Better: Coming Out, Overcoming Bullying, and Creating a Life Worth Living” by Dan Savage and Terry Miller Penguin Group (USA) Incorporated March 2011 $21.95

BOOKS

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‘It Gets Better’ authors and husbands Terry Miller and Dan Savage. Photo Credit: Kelly O.

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Beyond the music Beloved musical ‘RENT’ makes an anticipated return to the Queen City by Leah Cagle :: leah@goqnotes.com

Billy Ensley, the lead director of Theatre Charlotte’s upcoming production of “RENT,” has been performing professionally since he was a child and dove into directing and choreographing about 10 years ago. According to Ensley, taking on the task of directing a powerful work like “RENT” was an easy yes for him. “Rent revolutionized the American musical,” Ensley says. “It brought in a brand new generation of theatergoers in New York City.” And, that is exactly what the organizers at Theatre Charlotte are hoping for their Charlotte production. Ensley is hoping that “RENT,” as it has always had a curiously strong attraction in the young community, will draw a diverse audience. “The ultimate goal for them is to perpetuate the arts…widen their demographic appeal,” he says. “Their mission is to produce outstanding theater opportunities for all people in Charlotte — well, there are a lot of people in Charlotte.” With higher pre-sales than any other show this season, it seems like they are on the right track. It has been more than four years since the Queen City played host to a “RENT” production. It last graced the stage here in 2007 at Oven’s Auditorium; it was the first time a smaller neighborhood venue welcomed the show.

tant is right now and loving those people close to you and holding them dear,” Ensley says. “RENT” is often praised for its attention to controversial issues — primarily HIV/AIDS, and

featuring complex and meaningful LGBT relationships. But, as Ensley so eloquently explains, the musical appeals to much deeper levels. “It does deal with AIDS. It does deal with LGBT. But it also deals with heterosexuals,” he says. “It’s about people being people in a society. And, recognizing that there are all types of people that make up our community. It’s about living in hope — not dwelling in fear. It illustrates the power of love and our human connections and how we do that to overcome our greatest fears.” It is through live-action performance,

Ensley believes, through a storytelling of humanity, through a visceral connection of actors and actresses that theater finds its power to change people. Theater can act as a tool of education, allowing the audience to interact with worlds different, more progressive than their own and moving them to react accordingly. “When you see a show like ‘RENT’ where heterosexuals are friends and best friends of homosexuals…the audience sees these people struggling to live and loving one another and accepting one another for who they really are — that’s an education,” Ensley says. “Theater can teach us things about each other and can make us look at aspects of each other and make us more tolerant.” With tickets selling rapidly, “RENT” fans need to secure their seats soon. The production will play from May 13-29 with prices varying from $12-24. To purchase your tickets or learn more, visit theatrecharlotte.org. : :

Widespread support, anticipation Theatre Charlotte has not only received support from Charlotte’s tight-knit greater theater community and their enthusiastic fan base, but has also welcomed 17 performers on board to make this production special. Ensley boasts, “The beauty is that Charlotte does have the talent pool to pull off quality theater. Charlotte is not just about banking and NASCAR… [We have] 17 very talented performers who are very diverse — African-American, white, Latino, Asian. And, they are awfully talented, the best talent in town.” Calvin Grant, who has performed several roles on Broadway, traveled with national tours, and even sung at the White House, is set to play Taye Digg’s Broadway role of Benjamin Coffin III. ‘Living in hope, not dwelling in fear’ In recent years, society’s understanding of the LGBT community and gay issues has undoubtedly made great strides. A rise in LGBT activism and heightened exposure in the media world has helped increase awareness and promote (albeit, limited) legal progress; yet advancements such as these can often distract us from what’s really important — the heart. “RENT” speaks directly to the heart with the always needed, unchanging reminder of humanity and love. “It’s about love and dealing with obstacles in our lives and how we, as a resilient animal, come around to realizing that what is impor-

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Help pets beat the summer heat National animal protection society provides tips allowing you and your pet to safely enjoy summertime fun Most pet owners love their animals so much they want to take them everywhere and summer is a great time to frolic together in the backyard or to hit the road for a fun vacation. However, even the healthiest pets can suffer from sunburn, dehydration or heat stroke if you aren’t careful, say the experts at The American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (ASPCA).

Photo Credit: A. Blight.

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Here are several ways you can help keep your pet safe and healthy during the dog (and cat) days of summer: Visit the Vet :: A visit to the veterinarian for an early season check-up is a must. Make sure your pet is up-to-date on all necessary vaccinations. Pets should also be given a blood test for heartworm — a deadly parasite that is transmitted through the bite of an infected mosquito. It’s also recommended that dogs and cats be on a monthly preventive medication year-round. Keep Cool :: Dogs and cats can become dehydrated quickly, so give your pets plenty of water when it is hot outdoors. Also, make sure your pet has a shady place to escape the sun and when the temperature is very high, don’t let your dog linger on hot asphalt. Being so close to the ground, your dog’s body can heat up quickly and sensitive paw pads can burn. And, never, ever leave your animal alone in a parked vehicle, even with the windows open, since potentially fatal heatstroke can develop. Know the Symptoms :: According to the ASPCA, the symptoms of overheating in pets include excessive panting or difficulty breathing,

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increased heart and respiratory rate, drooling, mild weakness, seizures and an elevated body temperature of over 104 degrees. And, animals with flat faces, like pugs and Persian cats, are more susceptible to heat stroke since they cannot pant as effectively. These pets, along with the elderly, the overweight and those with heart or lung diseases, should be kept cool in air-conditioned rooms as much as possible. Just Say No :: Summertime is the perfect time for a backyard barbeque or party, but remember that the food and drink you serve your guests may be poisonous to pets. Keep alcoholic beverages away from pets and avoid human snacks — especially raisins, grapes, onions, chocolate and products with the sweetener xylitol. Pest-Free Pets :: Commonly-used flea and tick products, rodenticides (mouse and

rat baits), insecticides and herbicide lawn products can be harmful to cats and dogs if ingested, so keep them out of reach. While there are flea products that can be used safely on dogs, these same products can be deadly to cats, because of the presence of the chemical permethrin. Be sure to read directions on these products carefully. When walking your dog, steer clear of areas that you suspect have been sprayed with insecticides or herbicide lawn products. Keep citronella candles, oil products and insect coils out of pets’ reach as well. Water Safety :: Do not leave pets unsupervised around a pool, as not all dogs are good swimmers. Introduce your pets to water gradually and make sure pets wear flotation devices while on boats. Rinse your dog off af-

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Meet Mecklenburg’s ‘Top Dog’ Local pet gets winning honors Bella DeLaura, a four-and-a-half-yearold miniature dachshund, has been chosen as winner of Mecklenburg County Park and Recreation Department’s 2011 Top Dog Photo Contest. The winning photo shows Bella suspended in mid-air as she runs and jumps in a grass field. Bella is owned by Jessica DeLaura of Charlotte. The drawing was among three finalists ­— Bella, Boss and Zoe — chosen for cleverness and originality by a panel of judges from 49 entries. The contest is a preliminary to the Pedigree® Bark in the Park Dog Festival presented by Food Lion, an event held by Mecklenburg County Park and Recreation Department on April 30 at Rural Hill in Huntersville. The Top Dog and master were the grand marshals of the Pooch Parade at Bark in the Park and received a pet portrait by Tianna Fisher, a year’s supply of dog food, plus the dog will be featured on next year’s festival logo. Bark in the Park is “for dogs and the people they own!”

The 2010 Bark in the Park Dog Festival drew more than 14,000 people last year, most with dogs. The festival features contests

like Best Costume, Best Bark, Largest Dog, Smallest Dog, Best Trick, Disc Throw and Catch, and Disc Long-Shot Catch. The festival this year included exhibits, dog products, adoptable dogs and prize drawings. : : — compiled from release


Spots for Spot qnotes checks out the best dog-friendly places in your Charlotte neighborhood by Leah Cagle :: leah@goqnotes.com

Looking for a great place to take your pup out for a night on the town? Search no more! We’ve got you covered. Check out these great places we’ve found in a few of Charlotte’s most “pet-friendly” neighborhoods.

The Wine Vault 9009-L J.M. Keynes Dr. 704-548-9463 headwino.com Located just across from UNC Charlotte’s campus in the Shoppes at University Place, the Wine Vault is an excellent spot for you and your pet. Enjoy your choice of beverage from a wide selection of wines and beers while enjoying the warm ambiance inside or grabbing a covered table outside to enjoy the summer weather. With local art always on display and live music to entertain, the Wine Vault is the perfect spot for you to enjoy their self-defined “Cool Dogs. Weird people.”

Luna’s Living Kitchen 2102 South Blvd. Suite 150 704-333-0008 lunaslivingkitchen.com Luna’s Living Kitchen is an organic and local foodie’s dream! And, the gorgeous patio outside open to all our furry friends is just granola on top. Luna’s, “a new restaurant experience, a place with the peaceful heart of home and the living art of fresh vegan and raw foods” located in the Southend/Dilworth area, has a natural feel that creates a wonderful environment for you and your pup to relax in the summer sunshine.

Foskoskies 2121 Shamrock Dr. 704-535-2220 foskoskies.com Foskoskies, a great neighborhood café serving the Plaza-Midwood community for running on four years now, is a delicious spot to order some fresh, made-from-scratch dishes. The staff welcomes you and your furry friend to come visit them on their beautiful patio for a taste of southern food and hospitality.

Dog Bar 3307 N. Davidson St. 704-370-3595 dogbarcharlotte.com A dog bone sign, dogs sitting on stools, even private dog birthday parties — at this place, dogs rule. As the weather warms up, the bar will stay open later and begin to feature live music and social events. Conveniently located just past the Green Rice Gallery in NoDa, The Dog Bar is a “must visit” for any dog lover.

Summertime pet safety continued from page 12 ter swimming to remove chlorine or salt from his fur and try to keep your dog from drinking pool water, which contains chlorine and other chemicals that could cause stomach upset. No Fireworks for Fido :: Leave pets at home when you head out for fireworks celebrations and never use fireworks around pets at home. And, some final tips: Be sure to keep all unscreened windows or doors in your home closed and make sure adjustable screens are tightly secured. This helps prevent pets from falling out of them. If your dog or cat accidentally ingests a potentially toxic substance this summer, contact your local veterinarian or the ASPCA Animal Poison Control Center at 888-426-4435 for immediate assistance. For more information on having a fun, safe summer with your pet, visit aspca.org. : : — SPM Wire

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audiophile by david stout :: david@goqnotes.com

lang packs a bang! k.d. lang is back with a bang…a Siss Boom Bang to be precise. Earlier this month the peerless singer-songwriter returned with “Sing It Loud,” her first studio album in three years and first recorded entirely with a band of her own since the pair of albums she released with the Reclines that launched her groundbreaking career over 20 years ago. The songs on “Sing It Loud” reflect the organic, collaborative nature of the sessions, which took place at co-producer Joe Pisapia’s Middletree Studios in Nashville. Many of the songs were recorded live in the studio and that

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energy is palpable. Lead single “I Confess” is one of three songs lang penned with keyboardist Daniel Clarke and Joshua Grange, who plays baritone guitar and dobro. In addition to the original material, “Sing It Loud” includes a striking version of Talking Heads’ “Heaven.” Pisapia, who plays numerous instruments and serves as the band’s musical director, contributed the title track and co-wrote five songs with lang. Bassist Lex Price (Mindy Smith, Peter Bradley Adams) and drummer/percussionist Fred Eltringham (The Wallflowers) complete the lineup.

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k.d. lang and the Siss Boom Bang made a string of TV appearances this month, including “The Tonight Show with Jay Leno,” “Good Morning America” and “The View,” performing “I Confess.” In addition, lang and the band played “Sing It Loud” in its entirety at the Troubadour in L.A. and at (le) poisson rouge in New York City to promote the release. They will embark on a summer tour that will bring them to the Appalachian Summer Festival in Boone on July 15. “Sing It Loud” (Nonesuch Records) is available now at all digital music retailers and brick-n-mortar records shops. Gleek Out: Triple threat entertainer Matthew Morrison (who plays hunky teacher

Mr. Shue on gay-fave “Glee”) is set to release his self-titled debut album May 10. The set contains a duet with music legend (and new adoptive dad) Elton John on a mash-up of the icon’s own “Rocket Man” and “Mona Lisas and Mad Hatters.” Morrison will be touring behind the record in the coming months and on July 7, he’ll be in Greensboro for a performance at the War Memorial Auditorium. Ethereal Girl: Rock’s mystic queen Stevie Nicks (Fleetwood Mac) will issue her newest solo CD “In Your Dreams” May 3. This will be Nicks’ first collection of new material since the release of her Grammy-nominated “Trouble in Shangri-La” 10 years ago. The new album was written and recorded at Nicks’ L.A. home with co-producers Dave Stewart (Eurythmics) and Glen Ballard. Nicks and Stewart co-wrote seven of the album’s 13 songs. Lead single “Secret Love” (available now on iTunes) was written in 1976 while

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Fleetwood Mac was on tour opening for Peter Frampton.

T-Notes

Pro-gay Poptarts: Christina Aguilera’s “Beautiful� was the most empowering pop song of the last decade for LGB people, according to an internet poll conducted by U.K. gay rights group Stonewall. The multiplechoice, light-hearted poll asked Stonewall’s online supporters which pop song/video had the most empowering message for or best depiction of LGB people over the last 10 years. There were 1,007 respondents with the results as follows: 1. Christina Aguilera – “Beautiful� (33 percent) 2. Boyzone – “Better� (25 percent) 3. Lady Gaga – “Born This Way� (17 percent) 4. Gossip – “Standing in the Way of Control� (16 percent) 5. Katy Perry – “Firework� (9 percent) : :

bills without a sufficient radius of coverage? Are we setting a precedent? Of the 13 states which have enacted gender-identity inclusive legislation, each and every one has mandated public accommodations as part of the bill. Only one state, California, passed all-inclusive public accommodations protections after it had already approved other workplace protections. The others states bundled each of these protections together with one other exception — Hawaii omitted workplace protections and is only just now about to overcome that shortcoming. It’s been almost six years! Of the hundreds of jurisdictions which have locally taken steps, most have stipulated public accommodations provisions. Had Maryland chosen to follow the path of California, there is certainly no guarantee that a follow-up bill would have been forthcoming. Not including buses, lunch counters, homeless shelters, state office buildings and the other areas a bill which opted out of public accommodations language would exclude, means depriving people of their civil rights. Imagine the Civil Rights Act of 1964 guaranteeing right to work, but insisting upon separate bathrooms and lunch counters? It’s hard to make the case that discrimination is unacceptable,

info: audiophile@goqnotes.com

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when we hedge on what is and what is not deemed “discrimination.� Precedent goes even further when we talk about the court of public opinion. Many will buy into the fanatic position that standing for full and equal rights means allowing men in dresses license to prey on women and children in bathrooms; that men in dresses will be free to teach their children; that no one will be safe with these gender confused people lurking around. A bill without public accommodations essentially gives power to this baseless mindset; if there were no problems then why exclude critical areas of need? No wonder so many of these transphobes rename bills in their respective states “bathroom bills�. Passing legislation which protects all citizens of any given jurisdiction should be no big deal. But, when we quibble over what will and what will not be protected, we are treading on civil rights. And, we empower those who would perpetuate baseless allegations that some people are dangerous and don’t deserve equal rights. Wasn’t that part of the argument in 1964? : : — Comments and corrections can be sent to editor@goqnotes.com. To contact Robbi Cohn, email robbi_cohn108@yahoo.com.

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tell trinity by trinity :: qnotes contributor

Is it killing you? Dearest Trinity, As I reach middle age, my health, looks and sex appeal are dying out. Don’t you think suicide at middle age is better than letting old age kill me? Aging, Hollywood, FL Dearest Aging, I often lay my head on the lap of my plastic surgeon and cry for the same reason, but I’m learning to respect life, aging and so must you. Suicide is for cop-outs and losers. Now start raising your consciousness, start seeing the beautiful life that’s ahead and stop dwelling on the aging process. Darling, it may also be time for a makeover and to start getting some emotional help! Hey Trinity, I was doing great until the IRS called. Now the tax auditor is making my life hell. Help! Audit Axed, New York City, NY Hey Axed, The one thing people fear more than God is the tax auditor. “60 Minutes” did a story showing the cruelty of an IRS audit. The IRS said “they’re” trying to get better. So, pumpkin, get an accountant and/or a lawyer friend to help you. That which doesn’t kill you will make you stronger! (I got that way after much trial and error, which is evident in my cartoon.)

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Dear Trinity, I’ve been dating someone for almost a month. How many dates does it take to know if it’s working or not? Going To Work, Dallas, TX Dear Going To Work, Question! How long does it take for a seed to sprout? Answer: If you’re blinded by love or stricken with low self-esteem, then it may take a while to notice nothing is sprouting. If you follow your intuition, then you’ll know in a few dates. And, baby, if by five or six dates there’s still no mutual love, lust or joy then find a new gardener. Hello Trinity, It’s my partner! More often then not, he acts as if he has no brains or common sense. I need more! Needing More, Washington, DC Hello Needing, You can get counseling, a separation or, honey, make him read: Trinity’s Smart Tips For Having Wisdom And Common Sense   1. Boundaries: OK, you have an open relationship, but you are hitting on your BF’s best friend and you’re bragging about it. (Dating — and life — means practicing good boundaries!)   2. Traveling: For a week you played houseguest by yourself, at your in-laws without offering to clean up after yourself or take them to dinner! (Being a houseguest means giving gifts!)

  3. Religion/Politics: You love pushing your religious and political views on people. (Talking about religion and/or politics means having healthy discussions and sharing ideas, not yelling about who is right!)   4. Money: You borrow $2,000 from your cousin and avoid visiting, calling or making payments. (Borrowing money means paying it back with integrity!)   5. Sex: You have unprotected sex with a one-night stand and kick they’re drunken butt out in a snowstorm! (Sex means being responsible for your partner’s health and safety!)   6. Expressing Your Feelings: Just because your lover says, “How are you?” doesn’t mean he/she wants to hear all about your dramas. (Expressing yourself means talking about the bad while including the good.)   7. Stubborness: You’ve repeatedly been told, “It doesn’t work when you do that!” But, you still do it. (Being open-minded means trying different things differently!)   8. Hosting a Party: You throw a B.Y.O. drinks and food party and refuse to clean up before or play hostess during. (Giving a party means transforming your slum into a welcoming center not a do-it-yourself disaster!)   9. Job Interview: You arrive late, with a bad copy of your resume and refuse to take off your sunglasses. (A job interview means making the best first impression.) 10. Relationship: Seven years together, but the last two years were without sex. Your partner says, “I’ll try anything!” and you refuse. (Relationship means working together, not separately.) : : — With a Masters of Divinity, Reverend Trinity was host of “Spiritually Speaking,” a weekly radio drama, and now performs globally. info: www.telltrinity.com . Trinity@telltrinity.com Tell Trinity, P.O. Box 23861 . Ft. Lauderdale, FL 33307 Sponsored by: Provincetown Business Guild 800-637-8696 . www.ptown.org


out in the stars by charlene lichtenstein :: qnotes contributor

April 30 - May 13 If this time period starts out hot and heavy, blame Mercury, Venus, Mars, Jupiter and Uranus in energetic Aries. When is too much too too much? You may not know your outer limits. Maybe that is a good thing? ARIES (03.21-04.20) Nothing is quite like a gay Ram when they are fired up and raring to go, go, go. You have so much energy that you might as well package it and sell it to needy nations. Start new projects immediately and extend your outreach further than you have ever tried before. You are cooking on all four burners. Do I smell something burning? Is it rubber? TAURUS (04.21-05.21) Your imagination runs wild! And, it also seems to run in overdrive. What crazy ideas are swirling in your head now? Maybe, just maybe, you are getting a little paranoid. Let things play out as they will and you may find that there is nothing to worry about. In fact, things might be almost peachy. Take a bite out of the competition this summer. GEMINI (05.22-06.21) How many friends can you amass? Maybe mass is not the point. Try to catch quality and not mere quantity in your social net, pink Twin. There are some folks out there who can provide you with glitter, glamour and extra cache. And, there are some bad seeds who will tempt you with ill-fated activities and lead you astray. Ah, how to choose? How to choose? CANCER (06.22-07.23) It’s time to focus squarely on the job to see how far you can get on your abilities, efforts and political acumen. Gay Crabs often toil in the background without cashing in on their talents and accomplishments. That day is past, pardner! It is time to show the big bosses who you are. Who knows? This could be the big pay off time. How much will it take? LEO (07.24-08.23) This is the perfect time to spread your wings and take off for parts unknown. Spend some time planning your big vacation and see how far you can go and how much you can experience in a short time. Proud Lions with empty wallets can still expand their horizons by doing things that are out of the ordinary, but closer to home. How about inviting some exotic friends over? VIRGO (08.24-09.23) Use what you’ve got to meet, greet and sweep a few lovers off their feet. Queer Virgins have ample charisma, lots of pep and a little more oomph in their step. Don’t waste this sexy opportunity to spread it around. Before you know it you will rule the roost and hatch a few boiled eggs. When in doubt, scramble them up into an omelette. The more the merrier! LIBRA (09.24-10.23) Relationships need your attention before the summer gets fully underway.

Seek your perfect partner or make your current partnership more perfect. Gay Libras can be very creative, so put your best brain cells to work in your relationships. Are you giving all that you can give? Do you need to try a little harder? You know that will usually work! SCORPIO (10.24-11.22) Forget about trying to take some time off. Now is the time to put your nose to the grindstone. Clean off your desk by tackling all long-standing projects. This will give you breathing space to fully enjoy the summer months. It is also advisable to revamp your health regime with an eye towards toning and buffing. Swimsuit season is here proud Scorp,

ready or not. SAGITTARIUS (11.23-12.22) Throw off your shackles and enjoy yourself. Gay Archers are footloose and fancy free, so make it a priority to find the most creative and fun-filled activities in town and take advantage of them. You might also want to try your luck at some games of chance. The odds are in your favor as long as your risk is not too big. Uh, how big is big? CAPRICORN (12.23-01.20) If relatives beat a path to your door, blame it on the cosmos and decide if you will answer the doorbell. Some of them might be worth letting in. Pink Caps will find that they spend more time at home now, but life does not have to be dull. Plan some randy get togethers and become the go-to spot for a good time. Or, maybe, that is already your reputation? AQUARIUS (01.21-02.19) Aqueerians have a lot to say and this is the time to say it loud, proud and queer. Get your word out and about. Start a blog,

write a column, stand on a street corner with a microphone. At some point, someone will hear you and help you get to the next level. Is running for elected public office in your future? I don’t know. How much of a masochist are you? PISCES (02.20-03.20) Money may be the root of all evil, but now it is a heavenly gift. Guppies now know how to earn it and burn it. Let yourself go and enjoy life a little more than usual. The challenge will be to find ways of spending and saving at the same time. Yes, there is enough to do both. But, if not, lean toward more saving so you have an umbrella for those expected rainy days. : : © 2011 Madam Lichtenstein, LLC. All Rights Reserved. Entertainment. info: Visit www.TheStarryEye.com for e-greetings, horoscopes and Pride jewelry. My book “HerScopes: A Guide To Astrology For Lesbians” from Simon & Schuster is available at bookstores and major booksites.

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events qnotes goqnotes.com/qguide/events

arts. entertainment. news. views. May 3 • Charlotte Walk against domestic violence The Avon Foundation presents Walk the Course Against Domestic Violence. Walk up to 18 holes (five miles) alongside tournament players’ wives and families at Quail Hollow Club, a PGA TOUR course, to raise funds and awareness for the domestic violence cause. All proceeds benefit local domestic violence organizations. $35 per person ($25 before 4/22), under 12 free. Quail Hollow Club, 3700 Gleneagles Rd. 6-9 p.m. 866-646-2866.   walkthecourseagainstdv.org. May 5 • Charlotte Antiques show From apartments to million dollar homes, you’ll find unique items to fit any style and budget at the International Collectibles and Antiques Show! Including: home decor, antiques, furniture, collectibles, art, jewelry, crafts and more. Metrolina Tradeshow Expo, 7100 Statesville Rd. 9 a.m.-5 p.m. icashows.com/ICAShows.

prize winning Broadway musical, “RENT.” 501 Queens Rd. Various times. Various prices. For more information and to purchase tickets, visit theatrecharlotte.org.

Kind of a drag!

May 14 • Charlotte Queen City Drag Race The second annual Queen City Drag Race heats up! Competitions, music, drink and food! Proceeds benefit Human Rights Campaign and Pride Charlotte. Hartigan’s Irish Pub, 601 S. Cedar St. 1-6 p.m. queencitydragrace.com.

May 6 • Charlotte Empower(mint) The Mint Museum in Charlotte is hosting three “First Friday” Mint events this summer, the second of which is Empower(mint). The Mint Museum Uptown will be organizing live entertainment, gallery tours, hands-on art activities and a cash bar. The event is free for members or $10 for non-members. The Levine Center for the Arts, 500 S. Tryon St. 6-11 p.m. For more information contact April Young at april.young@ mintmuseum.org or call 704-337-2034. May 6 • Charlotte HIV, AIDS, and You Art Show Local artists present their “Positively Art” show, remaining on display until June 17. The Lesbian and Gay Community Center, 820 Hamilton St., Suite B11. Show opens at 5:30 p.m. Free. 704-333-0144. gaycharlotte.com. May 7 • Charlotte AIDS Walk Charlotte One of the largest AIDS fundraisers across the Carolinas, AIDS Walk Charlotte raises funds for the Regional AIDS Interfaith Network. To register walk teams or learn more, visit aidswalkcharlotte.org. May 7 • Charlotte Forté!

The Gay Men’s Chorus of Charlotte invites you to their annual fundraising gala featuring a dinner buffet, silent action and performances by the chorus and its small ensemble, Seventh Son. Morrison Atrium, Mint Museum Uptown, 500 S. Tryon St. $50 in advance only. For more information, visit gmccharlotte.org. May 12 • Charlotte RENT Event Theatre Charlotte, Charlotte’s Community Theatre, performs their “RENT” as a fundraiser for Time Out Youth. A silent auction will also be featured. 501 Queens Rd. Doors open at 6 p.m. Performance at 7 p.m. $75. For more information and to purchase tickets, visit theatrecharlotte.orgRentEvent.asp.

May 13-29 • Charlotte RENT Theatre Charlotte, Charlotte’s Community Theatre, presents the acclaimed, 1996 Pulitzer-

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May 14 • Raleigh OutRaleigh The LGBT Center of Raleigh presents its downtown festival celebrating diversity — an historic first for the capital city. Festival will include vendors, children’s area, entertainment and more. City Plaza, Martin St. For more information, including festival schedule and a location map, visit outraleigh.com. May 19-June 11 • Charlotte Chess: The Musical Queen City Theatre Company presents the London version of “Chess: The Musical,” by the composers of ABBA and lyricist of “Evita.” Duke Energy Theatre at Spirit Square, 345 N. College St. Various times. Various prices. For more information or to purchase tickets, visit queencitytheatre.com.

May 13 • Charlotte Lady Luck Bingo Equality Winston-Salem presents their   third Gay Bingo event, “Lady Luck Bingo.” YWCA-Gateway, 1300 S. Main St. 7:30 p.m. $20/general. $10/students. For more   information or to purchase tickets, visit   equalitywinstonsalem.org.

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May 14 • Charlotte The Casting Couch Join the Charlotte Pride Band and take a seat on the “casting coach.” Charlotte Pride Band presents fun and well-known music from the big screen. Unitarian Universalist Church of Charlotte, 234 N. Sharon Amity Rd. 8 p.m. $10. charlotteprideband.org.

May 21 • Raleigh AIDS Walk+Ride Alliance of AIDS Services-Carolina hosts their annual walk and bicycle ride in downtown Raleigh. Register walkers, learn more about the ride and more at aidswalkandride.org.

Tuesday, May 17, 2011 John Robinson U.S. State Department Director of the Office of Civil Rights and Chief Diversity Officer Crowne Plaza 201 S. McDowell St. Cash Bar Social/Heavy Hor d’oeuvres @ 5:30 pm Program starts @ 6:45 pm $20 Call 704.565.5075 or email businessguild@yahoo.com for more information or pay online via PayPal at www.charlottebusinessguild.org

www.charlottebusinessguild.org April 30-May 13 . 2011

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April 30-May 13 . 2011


QNotes April 30-May 13, 2011