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salt lake March 15, 2012 Issue 202
Two weddings, two happy couples... It took a village
Utah Gay & Lesbian 9th Grade Student Wedding Expo Outed at Assembly
Email Attacks UVU Candidate
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Gay Wedding Issue
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FaLL in LoVE With thEatRE! “Hysterically funny...And along the way to its sweet finale you can fall in love with theatre all over again.” —Sarasota Herald-Tribune (FL)
MARCH 23 – APRIL 7, 2012
Laughing stock WRITTEN BY
“I cried, I choked, I fell into a coughing fit, I cried some more...can’t help but love this play.” —Nashua Telegraph (NH)
CHARLES MOREY PTC Artistic Director Charles Morey’s hilarious and affectionate look at the world of theatre has had close to a hundred productions around the country since its PTC premiere over a decade ago. When The Playhouse, a rustic New England summer theatre, schedules a repertory season of Dracula, Hamlet and Charley’s Aunt, comic mayhem ensues.
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4 NATIONAL NEWS NEWS
MARCH 15, 2012
Quips & Quotes ❝❝
Upcoming Shows Ring of Fire
Featuring the Songs of Jonny Cash
The rhetoric is far worse against people who stand for traditional marriage. If anyone gets attacked in this country, it’s people who stand for traditional marriage. I mean you just brought up Kirk Cameron, right now, and his comments. He’s the one who is getting trashed right now; he’s the one who is getting called a bigot.” —Michele Bachmann defending her anti-gay past
A Dark Horse Company Theatre Production
March 16-18 • 22-25
Stand-Up Comedy Headlining Bernadette Pauley Featuring Du Kirpilani
Thank you for sharing your concerns regarding the purple mesh pullovers. The use of purple was never intended to offend anyone but since it has, we have taken steps to change the color.”
—Former U of U football coach and current Ohio State University coach after queer-rights activists protested his use of purple practice jerseys
Hedwig and the Angry Inch
Even as a young child, I thought, ‘Why is being gay bad?’ ... I didn’t understand it. So I asked my grandma, who is the best Christian I ever knew. I’d say, ‘What about my friend Denny, he’s gay, is he going to hell?’ She told me, ‘I read the Bible like I eat fish. I take the meat that serves me well but I don’t choke on the bone.’”
A Plan B Theatre Company Award-winning Production
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publisher Michael Aaron editor Seth Bracken arts & entertainment
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3/8/12 11:57 AM
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If Mitt Romney takes the nomination and then loses to Obama, the extremists who’ve taken over the party will surely say the problem was Romney’s lack of ideological purity. If, however, Santorum is the nominee — and then loses in a landslide — the party will no longer be able to delude itself about where its ideological rigidity has taken it. An alcoholic doesn’t stop drinking until he hits bottom. The Republican Party won’t change until it hits bottom.” —Journalist Joe Nocera
MARCH 15, 2012
HRC names new president American Foundation for Equal Rights board president Chad Griffin, a key player in the federal challenge to Proposition 8, will replace Joe Solmonese as president of the Human Rights Campaign. Griffin began his political career at the age of 19 in the communications office for the Clinton White House. After two years he moved to Los Angeles where he ran a charitable foundation for director and actor Rob Reiner. Griffin was tapped to spearhead the effort to stop Proposition 8, California’s ban on gay marriage. After it passed with 52 percent of the vote, Griffin and Reiner challenged the initiative in federal court, a move originally opposed by most established gay rights groups. The ban has been overturned in a federal and appeals court. Griffin, 38, will take the helm of the HRC on June 11. “He’s passionate about our equality and more importantly, has a proven track record of consistently delivering results. Already, the fight to overturn Prop. 8 has prevailed in two federal court rooms,” Solmonese said in a press release. “Chad Griffin has the leadership qualities critical to propel our movement for equality forward and I am so proud that he will succeed me this June in leading HRC.” With a $40 million annual budget and a staff of 150, the HRC is often recognized as the most influential queer rights organization in the nation. President Barack Obama has spoken twice at its fundraising dinners and the organization has pushed for various gay-rights advancements that have occurred including same-sex hospital visitation rights and federal hate-crime legislation protecting queers. However, the HRC also has its critics who say it is too slow to push for change and it represents the interests of well-off gay men. Solmonese has been heavily criticized, especially after he endorsed a bill in 2007 that would have extended job and housing protections to gay men and lesbians, but not to transgender people. “While there’s no doubt that we’ve made tremendous progress on the road to equality, we must not forget that millions of LGBT Americans still lack basic legal protections and suffer the consequences of discrimination every day,” Griffin said in a statement. “Today’s generation of young people, and each generation hereafter, must grow up with the full and equal protection of our laws, and finally be free to participate in the American dream. As HRC president, I’ll approach our work with a great sense of urgency because there are real-life consequences to inaction.” The head of the Utah Democratic Party, Jim Dabakis, was included as a possible candidate by the HRC steering
committee to replace outgoing Solmonese, Dabakis said earlier this year in a press release. “I am flattered and honored to have my name mentioned together with the Human Rights Campaign, however, the last six months of being the Chair of the Utah Democratic Party have been the most interesting, challenging and rewarding time of my life. The association with so many Democrats across our beautiful state has been a singular honor, and I will not leave my job half done. I would rather work for free in Utah then pile up cash in D.C.,” Dabakis said. “And frankly, even though we disagree regularly, often with ferocity, it has been rewarding to work with Republican leaders in the state like Gov. (Gary) Herbert, State Senate President (Michael) Waddoups and Republican Chairman (Thomas) Wright. Utah Republicans and Democrats have the ability to separate out the brutal, thuggish partisanship that so permeates paralysis in Washington, D.C. and concentrate on policy issues without making the politics personal or too disagreeable. This is what the people of Utah demand and deserve.” Dabakis is the first openly gay head of a major party in Utah. He was one of the founding members of both the Utah Pride Center and Equality Utah. While the annual salary of the HRC president is nearly $400,000, Dabakis is currently accepting only a $1 a year salary to work for the Democrats. “I look forward to serving the people of Utah for the next one and a half years and am confident that I will enjoy spending time in Washington County much more then New Human Rights Campaign President Chad Griffin in Washington, D.C.,” Dabakis said.
not as I do Education mandates
After a bill was passed by the Utah Legislature, all students will likely be required to recite the Pledge of Allegiance every day in school. The bill is moving on to the governor’s desk where he will most likely sign it without hesitation. Currently, elementary school students already recite the pledge daily and secondary students are required to participate once a week. The bill was strongly defended by Rep. Stephen Sandstrom, R-Orem, who said there is an obligation to instill patriotism in children. Sandstrom has vehemently opposed any
education requirements from the federal government calling it encroachment on state rights. Now he is pulling the same tricks on local schools and school boards.
Mormon public-relations machine After The Washington Post published an article quoting a BYU professor who claims that blacks were denied entrance into Mormon leadership and even, theoretically, Mormon heaven because of their skin and disobedience to god, the Mormon propaganda machine went into full force. The Mormon-owned Deseret News put on their prettiest anti-racist face and denounced other news sources for reporting on the racist stances of LDS Inc. Rather than denounc-
ing the affiliation with the remarks, editorials printed in the paper made statements defending the religion’s past. Also, quite conveniently, stories about black Mormons and primarily black populations appeared in the paper following the remarks.
Christian leader: Nondiscrimination could lead to child rape A Mich. Republican candidate for senate is asking a local town to stop a legislative effort to pass a nondiscrimination ordinance protecting gays and lesbians. American Family Association of Michigan’s Gary Glenn wrote a letter to Mount Pleasant city commissioners claiming the measure would threaten children’s privacy in public restrooms.
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6 LOCAL NEWS NEWS
MARCH 15, 2012
Utah student outed, mocked during school assembly By Seth BRacken
A ninth-grade student in the Granite School District is raising concerns about his mistreatm e n t d u ring a January school assembly when he was outed to classmates and teachers. While sitting on the f r o n t r o w, Max, whose name has been changed, was particiJeffrey Dean pating in a group exercise where hypothetical situations arose which were supposed to help the students set goals. When the question, “Would you rather marry a rich man who doesn’t love you or a poor man who does?” was asked, intended for the girls. But when Max answered the question honestly, the presenter, Jeffrey Dean, heard him. “He made a comment about my sexuality and said the question was just for the girls to answer,” Max said. “I thought it was a little funny at first because I didn’t think he was being rude. I sort of laughed. But when he brought it up a second and third time, even telling another student to go and sit, ‘with that other kid,’ I realized the joke wasn’t so funny. It hurt. So I left the assembly and didn’t go back.” While he is out to his family and a few close friends, he said he wasn’t open about his sexuality to the entire school. “I didn’t want everyone to know. There are some not so nice people at this school and I didn’t want any problems. I didn’t know how they would react if they found out I am gay,” he said. “But now they all know. I didn’t want to come out like that.” After the incident, the principal asked him if he was OK. “I told her I was fine. I didn’t know what to think. I felt a little scared and a little ashamed,” Max said. “I know I should have said something right then, but I didn’t really know what to do. It was happening pretty fast.” Max approached Dean after the incident and voiced his concerns over his treatment and said his sexuality shouldn’t be used in front of the school as a joke. According to Max, Dean simply replied, “I’m sorry that’s all you took from my great presentation. There was so much more to learn.” Granite School District was made aware of the incident and a district representative said an intensive investigation was performed and concluded that it was han-
dled correctly. Multiple witness accounts were gathered from teachers who attended the assembly, said Ben Horsley, a district spokesperson. The witnesses said there was no bullying or mention of the student’s sexuality, he said. “The first thing on our minds is the safety of our students,” Horsley said. “The safety of the student is the first concern. But we feel everything was handled appropriately in this case.” While Max said he is not facing any imminent bullying threats from other students as a result of the incident, for three or four days after the assembly, many stu-
dents made comments about his sexuality. Some thought it was funny, and others came to his defense, but it was not a comfortable way to be presented to the entire school, Max said. The presenter of the assembly, Dean, is a Christian speaker and ordained pastor. He founded Jeffrey Dean Ministries in 1993. Dean tours the country giving speeches to young people and fund raises for conservative, anti-choice groups. He is also outspoken about his opposition to gay rights. On his Twitter feed and personal blog, Dean has made several disparaging remarks about gays and lesbians. When asked if Christian ministers are normally allowed to speak to junior high students, Horsley said Dean’s religious affiliation made no difference in the choice to select him as a speaker and it was a motivational speech, not a spiritual one. Q
Capitol Hill rally draws over 100 gay-rights supporters By Seth Bracken
More than 100 queer rights activists rallied at the State Capitol on Feb. 29, voicing frustration over the inaction of the Utah Legislature concerning queer rights, including tabling the statewide nondiscrimination ordinance. The rally, organized by a group called Human Dignity, shout out the legislators by name who voted to table the nondiscrimination bill that was moved into committee earlier this session. “It is absolutely ridiculous that we can’t even have a discussion on these issues in this state,” said Weston Clark, a co-organizer of the rally. “Enough is enough… We’re here to start applying just a little more pressure on these people.” The protestors promised to use their frustration and attend party caucuses in March and turn out in greater numbers to vote in November. Democratic Sen. Ben McAdams, sponsor of the bill, said the protections would eventually be passed and the fight for equality in the state will continue. “I’m proud to be part of the 72 percent of Utah that supports statewide nondiscrimination,” said McAdams. “This is a wave that is crashing on the capitol of Utah and this is just the beginning of the wave. This wave will continue to beat against the walls until statewide nondiscrimination is passed.” Not only is it a human-rights issue, but also a business issue, said Democratic Party Chairman Jim Dabakis. Large employers in Utah, including Adobe, eBay Inc. and 1-800-Contacts are all demanding that Utah lawmakers expand protections for its queer citizens, he said. “Utah was the last state in the country, shamefully, to approve the Martin Luther
King Jr. holiday. We cannot allow that to happen with fairness and equality in housing and employment,” Dabakis said. “The simple message to send is just look at the facts, get over your fear and, legislators, do what’s right.” Activists are feeling frustrated with the condescending nature of the way they have been treated in committee hearings and by some conservative legislators, said rally speaker and local actor Sister Dottie Dixon. “Utah is on the front line of equal rights and that battle,” said Sister Dottie. “We are fed up. We are tired of being ignored, politely dismissed, relegated to second-class citizens, or most, and worst of all, heard and then tabled.” This year, the bill was brought to a Senate Committee for the first time, but was tabled by a 4-2 vote. This came in spite of a Republican co-sponsor of the bill and growing statewide support for the measure. However, Utah Eagle Forum president Gayle Ruzicka and others said it did not go far enough to protect religious liberties and said there should be an exemption to the law that would allow people to discriminate based on their religious beliefs. “We need to stop the bullying that is happening against the LGBT community and this bullying is coming from the biggest bunch of bullies in the state,” said Sister Dottie. “Today we’re recommitted, we’re re-inspired, we’re reignited to take back our own power and make change happen in a big way.” This is the fifth time that Utah lawmakers have blocked proposals to ban discrimination in housing and employment based on sexual orientation and gender Continued on page 27
Qmmunity Legislative wrap-up social Join Equality Utah for a 2012 Legislative wrap-up social, discussing the highs and lows of the session and possibly earmark topics and concerns that EU can help advocate for the 2013 session. There will be pizza, salad and much commentary — free of charge! WHEN: March 18, 3–5 pm WHERE: Red Rock Brewing Co., 150 W. 500 S. INFO: equalityutah.org
An em an op circul prior
Westminster hosts religion versus gay rights lecture As part of the 2011–2012 Bastian Foundation Diversity Lecture Series, Westminster College is pleased to host a lecture by Clifford J. Rosky entitled “Navigating Conflicts Between Religious Liberties and LGBT Rights.” Rosky is associate professor at the University of Utah’s S.J. Quinney College of Law and senior research fellow at the Williams Institute on Sexual Orientation Law & Public Policy at the UCLA School of Law. An accomplished scholar and respected advocate, Rosky will ask, “How can we navigate conflicts between religious liberties and LGBT rights— in higher education and elsewhere?” WHEN: April 4, 7:30 p.m. WHERE: Westminster College, 1840 S. 1300 East INFO: westminstercollege.edu
‘Love Free or Die’ screening A fundraising screening of a Sundance Film Festival documentary selection, Love Free or Die, a film about a man whose two defining passions are in direct conflict: his love for God and for his partner, Mark. The film follows the story of Gene Robinson, the first openly gay person to become a bishop in the historic traditions of Christendom. Tickets to the screening benefit Equality Utah. WHEN: April 5, 7 p.m. WHERE: Brewvies Cinema Pub, 677 S. 200 W. TICKETS: $10, Brittany Smith 801-671-6766
Southern Utah Equality Celebration Tickets are now on sale for the second annual Southern Utah Equality Celebration: Equality Evolution. Proceeds from the event will benefit the Southern Utah LGBT education and community awareness campaign. The dinner, program and entertainment will include honors given to local queer-rights activists: Diane Bernard, George Stoddard, & University of Utah/St. George HIV Clinic staff. Space is limited and last year’s event sold out fast, so get your tickets now. WHEN: May 19, 5:30 p.m. WHERE: Coyote Gulch Art Village, 851 Coyote Gulch Court, Ivins, Utah COST: $65 through Apr. 30, $75 after May 1 INFO: equalityutah.org
throu ident she si stude
MARCH 15, 2012
Email attack may have cost gay candidate’s seat in UVU student office By Seth Bracken
An email asking students to vote against an openly gay candidate for school office circulated the Utah Valley University just prior to the election. The email said that Tom Hawkins, a candidate for vice president of clubs and organizations, could not be trusted because he is gay. After the votes were tallied on March 7, he was informed that he lost the race. The email was sent to clubs and Tom Hawkins club contacts through the school’s email server and the identity of the sender is unknown. He or she simply signed the letter, “a concerned student.” Hawkins’ candidacy was unique
in that only club members and club presidencies are allowed to vote for the position, making it much easier for an email to reach all the possible voters. “Because of Tom Hawkins’ sexuality his judgment is impaired, and biased. This is a risky thing as he will be imposing his biasis (sic) and judgments into all of the clubs and organizations on campus,” the email read. “If we are to allow a gay student into student government, next they will be allowing students to advocate for same sex marriage. Because of our traditions, beliefs, and values here in Utah, and specifically Utah County, we cannot afford to let this person into the VP position. This will affect every aspect of clubs and organizations. We must do anything to spread the word to any and all of our fellow students that have any influence with any clubs or organizations here on campus.” “When I first read the letter, I was devastated,” said Hawkins, who is currently
Former Utah Democratic Party Exec remembered by queer-rights leaders By Seth Bracken
The longest-serving executive director of the Utah Democratic Party, Todd Taylor, passed away in his home on Mar. 6, at the age of 46. Taylor, the former president of the Association of State Democratic Executive Directors, director of the state party and arrangements chairman for the Utah delegation to four national party conventions, died in his sleep. Taylor led Utah’s Democratic Party Todd Taylor for 20 years, longer than any other state party executive in the country. Despite offers to leave Utah and head up other major Democratic initiatives across the nation, Taylor stayed close to home where he enjoyed the fight. “He was just a good guy. He always had a smile for everyone,” said Nikki Boyer, a member of the Stonewall Democrats and president of the Utah Pride Center. “We all worked with him. I have never met such an intelligent and caring man. He could remember facts and figures like no one I’ve ever seen.” Even before the political trend starting shifting toward a wider acceptance of queer rights, Taylor was a strong supporter and ally of the community, Boyer said. Whenever she raised a concern with
him, he listened intently and helped find the best solution possible. Taylor presided over the party just after the Gay and Lesbian Utah was formed in 1990. The tumultuous times saw one of the largest pushes for gay rights in Utah’s history. Founding member of GLUD, David Nelson, said Taylor faced an uphill battle of organizing all the volunteers and politicians into one camp. “Having founded GLUD just months before Todd started working with the stateparty officers in 1990, the group was never one to accept the status quo or sit quietly while others did its work to protect equal rights for gay Utahns — things Todd always suggested he would do for us if we just stayed away from public attention,” Nelson said in a press release. “In time, Todd learned that working with GLUD leaders to accomplish our goals was the best way to avoid even more attention to having denied us.” Pushing for a united party while considering the concerns of winning elections, Taylor walked a thin line, Nelson said. “It is right that Todd became the longest serving state-party executive director in the nation. He advised his own state party, and those of other states, to succeed, often without notice,” Nelson said. “Gay politics in Utah owes Todd thanks.” His passing was quite sudden and unexpected, said Todd Bennett, the chair of the Utah Stonewall Democrats, a queer-inclusive caucus within the Democratic Party
the president of UVU Spectrum, the queerstudent group. “I thought about just calling it quits. I didn’t sign up to be personally attacked like this. But I am going to finish it. No matter what else happens, I am going to run a good, clean race.” While he said he does not know who sent the email or how the perpetrator(s) had access to the server, he does not believe it came from one of his direct competitors. “I have worked with the other teams and my opponent. I absolutely do not believe it was her who sent it. She has been terrific to work with and I don’t know who would do this, but it wasn’t her,” Hawkins said. The letter continued to say that Hawkins’ sexuality would affect every aspect of the clubs and would even lead to the destruction of marriage being an institution between one man and one woman. “We as students of UVU must stand up for what we believe to be right and prove that sexual orientation plays an intricate part in what we believe, how we function and interact with people, and effects it has on the school. If we do not put an end to this now, and keep this candidate from getting which replaced GLUD. “I saw him on the night before he passed,” Bennett said. “He stuck his head into a meeting we were having that night. His passing was such a shock.” While Bennett said he did not work with him as closely as others, Taylor was always open to listening to queer issues. “I think you could always tell he really meant what he said and believed in the work,” Bennett said. “It was more than just words. He really meant what he said and tried to back that up.” His impact will be missed greatly by all Utahns and Democrats, said state party chairman Jim Dabakis. “Todd Taylor was the soul of the Utah Democratic Party. His leadership, vision, and dry sense of humor will be remembered and honored as long as we have Democrats in Utah,” Dabakis said in a press release. Todd served as the Executive Director of the Utah State Democratic Party since 1992. He was first interested in politics following his career as a chiropractor and advocating for the Utah Chiropractic Association. He was active in campaigns his entire life, including Campaign Manager for J. Dell Holbrook for Davis County Commission and Kem Gardner for Governor in 1992. “Todd Taylor was known across the United States as one of the brightest and most resourceful talents in our party at any level. He was the trusted source for Utah Democrats as well as state-party executive directors and state party chairs for nearly a quarter century. He is irreplaceable in so many ways,” said Wayne Holland, former Utah State Democratic Party Chair, in a press release. Q
into office, it is a possibility he will let his personal beliefs, biasis (sic), and beliefs, influence the way he performs his duties and how he manages things with clubs,” the letter stated. “If we allow Tom Hawkins to be elected, we are all admitting to ourselves (sic) that homosexuality is OK. Stand true to your beliefs. Hold true to the rod, and do not let this sinning student win.” The UVU administration is looking into how the email was sent and who exactly sent it, but no leads have been established, Hawkins said. UVU officials released a statement condemning the letter. “As an institution, we pride ourselves on being a place that is hospitable to all. We condemn intimidation, harassment, and discrimination against any student. Inclusivity is one of our core themes and values as a university,” wrote Mike Rigert, communications manager at UVU. “The reported viewpoint represents one anonymous individual’s perspective and is not shared by the University. In fact, we denounce such vitriolic, uncivil and counterproductive dialog.” Q
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MARCH 15, 2012
Democrats tap former Army general for gubernatorial race By Seth Bracken
In a long-shot bid for governorship, the Democratic party pulled no punches in launching retired general and entrepreneur Peter Cooke as their frontman for the position. While he may not yet be a household name in Utah, he plans to become one. Starting his career in the military, when he enrolled in the Army Reserve Officer Training Corps at Utah State University in 1967, Cooke went on to be the Commanding General of the U.S. Army 96th Regional Readiness Command. He is also an entrepreneur and has started several real estate, construction and property management companies that provide affordable single family and multi-unit housing. It’s his history of success in business and in command that qualify him for the position of governorship in Utah, he said. “We live in a time when jobs and investment capital move around the globe at the speed of light. We live in a time when Utah is changing faster than at any time in our lives,” Cooke said. “Utah will need real leadership — stronger leadership — to guarantee Utah’s prosperity in the 21st century, and we need it now.” With an emphasis on strengthening Utah schools, fostering economic development and improving air quality, Cooke promised to bring a new and more organized effort to Utah government. “Some of our current leaders think we cannot fix our air quality problems without harming economic growth. I don’t buy that,” he said. “Other states have figured
out how to do both, and so can we here in Utah. We do not have to put up with some of the worst air quality in the nation, costing us both our health and our economic growth.” Settling for constantly being ranked as one of the worst states for education is not acceptable if Utah wants to compete for jobs in the future and more money would be spent on education if he is elected, Cooke said. “So we have a choice: Do we settle for our bad record on education and turn our heads, hoping for the best? Or do we choose stronger leadership to address our greatest challenge?” Cooke asked. While he did not campaign on the issues of expanding queer rights, Matthew Weinstein, a campaign spokesperson, said he supports a statewide nondiscrimination ordinance that would protect against discrimination in housing and employment based on sexual orientation and gender identity. The campaign spokesperson declined to comment on Cooke’s position concerning second-parent adoption rights for gay and unmarried couples. A bill that would allow gay couples to jointly adopt a child was heard by a Senate committee in 2011. Utah’s current governor, Gary Herbert, who is running for reelection opposes both the nondiscrimination ordinances and second-parent adoption rights. “I believe Utahns are compassionate, nondiscriminating people, and I think that will be reflected in our having a statewide
Affirmation-Utah Cty serves unique purpose Utah County’s chapter of Affirmation, a group for lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender Mormons and former Mormons, is gathering attention after its first meeting. Despite its infancy, the group’s first fireside, to be held March 13, 6:30 p.m., is being given by Justin Utley, a Utah Pride 2011 performer who has spoken out about the ineffectiveness of so-called reparative therapy. The group is there to serve as an alternative to the difficult, and occasionally destructive, path that many gay Mormons face, said group organizer Bryan Horn. Although it is not an official chapter of the national Affirmation organization, the first informational gathering brought a dozen attendees and they are looking to grow by leaps and bounds in the coming weeks. “We know that the Salt Lake Affirmation chapter already offers meetings and gatherings, but Utah County has different needs and we’re going to meet them,” Horn said. The group is a confidential outlet for
queers with a Mormon past, provided everyone is respectful of individual beliefs, he said. There will be Mormons who are still very active and some who are not practicing, but through mutual respect, everyone can come together for social and spiritual outlets, Horn said. “I started posting on Craigslist, under the ‘Men for Men’ section and advertised our meetings. The response was overwhelming. So many people want to join a group like this, they just don’t know where to find it,” Horn said. “There was even an email from a married bishop who said he just doesn’t know what to do or where to turn. We want to come together and have everyone help each other.” Horn is relatively new to Affirmation, but assures guests that meetings are not held for Mormon-bashing, and everyone must be respectful. “I know it can be so difficult when you’re first coming out as gay or starting to try and decide how you feel and what you’re going to do with your life,” Horn said. “I think a lot of guys engage in very
Utah Gay Fathers expands services, plans fundraiser
anti-discrimination law — it’s just a matter of time — and I will support it,” Cooke said in a statement. In 2010, a special election was held to fill the seat that former Gov. Jon Huntsman vacated to serve as the U.S. ambassador to China. Herbert won that landslide election by more than 30 percent despite Herbert’s alleged involvement in two separate and potentially devastating controversies. In 2010, Herbert accepted thousands of dollars in campaign donations from Alton Coal Development before granting the company a strip-mining permit. Later that year, after receiving tens of thousands of dollars in contributions from the Provo River Constructors, the company was awarded a construction bid for the Utah County I-15 reconstruction project. The state had to settle a lawsuit with the losing companies for the bid out of court to the tune of $13 million. Q unhealthy habits and activities, and we want to help stop that. We want to offer that alternative so many of us are looking for.” Horn’s first experience with a group for gay Mormons while he was a student at the University of Utah left him unlikely to join another similar gathering. In place of an open dialogue, many of the participants were attending just to voice frustration over their religion and Horn said he wasn’t prepared for that kind of meeting. Avoiding similar gatherings until he began chatting on Facebook with a member of Affirmation, Horn said he saw a need for the group in Utah County. “We’re going to try and really target the younger men and women. There are a lot of returned missionaries in Utah County and a lot of them are gay. People of all ages are welcome to attend, but we’ll be targeting the younger people specifically,” Horn said. “We are particularly excited about meeting with Justin Utley. His music is so powerful and what he has to share about his experiences in the ex-gay therapy is really moving.”
Continued on page 27
The Utah Gay Fathers Association is expanding: having added a second monthly meeting and launching a fundraising dinner on April 14, 4 p.m., at a member’s home in Salt Lake City. The funds raised will help offset organizational costs and pay for participation in the Utah Pride Festival, said Ben Visser, director of the UGFA. With more than 40 attendees at the last meeting, the organization is growing fast and outgrowing the current meeting space, Visser’s apartment. “It is so rewarding and we’re growing much faster than I anticipated,” Visser said. Since 2009, the group has been a valuable resource for gay fathers in Utah and is exploring the possibility of expanding to Northern Utah and expanding services and the location of the Salt Lake City meetings. The group meets on the first Sunday and third Tuesday of each month. There are also quarterly events for Spanish-speaking fathers and group members. The schedule is updated with extra activities, including the fundraiser on April 14, and details of all the activities are posted on utahgayfathers.com. The April fundraiser is titled Spring Fling 2012 and participants are invited to dress in their best cowboy and cowgirl attire. The western-themed dinner and event will include raffle prizes, western inspired tapas, cash bar, a disc jockey, awards recognition and a chance to mingle with the community. Tickets are $20 each or $35 for two. Proceeds will help the organization attend the Utah Pride Festival, where they won an award for being the best new parade entry in 2011. The group is also looking for a volunteer to help launch their Future Fathers program for expecting gay fathers and those who want to have children. The group is expanding into a future where gay adoption and acceptance of gay couples are increasing drastically. The group’s mission is “to celebrate fathers and all gay men through fellowship and support. Our focus is to embrace, affirm, and improve ourselves as gay fathers and men; to socialize and share the unique and universal joys, strengths, and challenges that we face as gay fathers in Utah…. Future Fathers events such as adoption, surrogacy, and IVF information clinics, legal nights where we discuss issues pertaining to various aspects of gay fatherhood, and other social gatherings to uplift and support each other.” Whether looking to adopt or for a social outlet to find support with other gay fathers, go to utahgayfathers.com for more information and to purchase tickets to the Spring Fling 2012.
MARCH 15, 2012
Cheer Salt Lake seeks support
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owing r said. valuh and ing to s and tings. y and e also ng faule isA bill, HJR24, requiring an orientation ng thefor new state lawmakers to be trained on all theUtah’s statistical demographics, and culs.com.tural diversity and sensitivity, was killed in pringa Utah Senate committee on Feb. 28. ted to A separate vote asking to add gender irl at-identity and sexual orientation to the bill eventfailed, but brought questions from the piredpanel. Rep. Casey Anderson, R-Cedar City, s rec-asked what gender identity meant and was h thethe lone Republican sponsoring the bill afr $35ter his question was answered. Those who niza-voted against the bill, Sens. Jenkins, Marwheregaret Dayton, R-Orem, Daniel Thatcher, t newR-West Valley City and Peter C. Knudson, R-Brigham City, were also the same legislanteertors who voted against the statewide nons pro-discrimination bill. those The bill started a few years ago when foroup ismer Sen. Chris Buttars made a comment adop-about a bill he did not like and called it a re in-“black baby.” “From a business perspective, one of the ways we see opportunities are in new te famarkets and new communities,” the bill’s wship ce, af-sponsor Sen. Ross Romero, D-Salt Lake thersCity, said. “I don’t think as a community serving our constituents is any different. nique ... I think understanding who we all reprechalsent as we come forward as a state is helptah…. ful to the process.” ption, The bill would not require any educacs, letion about discrimination in the workplace rtainor housing; instead it would inform lawhood, makers about the demographics of their t and districts. Information about race, ethnicity and other factors would be given to inoutletcoming legislators so they are fully aware go toof who they are representing, Romero said. n and “I hope the committee gets the sense 012. that this is meant to be part of what we are
After more than six months of meeting, tossing and cheering, Cheer Salt Lake, Utah’s queer-inclusive charitable team, is attracting more cheerleaders, and more attention. CSL is launching their first fundraiser to help in paying for uniforms and other operational expenses, said Valina Eckley, one of the team organizers. After jumping through hoops to start raising money, the team is now asking for sponsors and funds; donations up to $100 will reward donors with emails, letters and a T-shirt. More substantial donations will allow businesses to sponsor the team and receive private pep rallies. Donations can be made through indiegogo.com. The funds raised will help the team with initial supplies, uniforms, business and legal fees, etc. CSL is offering a tiered-sponsorship so that anybody can give to our cause.
Utah Senate committee kills sensitive-training bill as a state, who we are as a state and who we’re going to represent,” Romero said. “It is for the betterment of our state that we have to think about this.” The only concern raised by the committee came from Anderson who asked for clearer statements about how long the training would last. Romero said it would be a 20-45 minute training session. Anderson and Sen. Luz Robles, D-Salt Lake City, were the only two who voted for the bill, but none of the committee members who voted against the bill gave any reason for their votes.
and fans,” Eckley said. “Oh and let’s not forget allies. Everyone is welcome.” The San Francisco branch performs reg“We’re starting to grow and we are going ularly in the pride parade and was featured to be taken seriously,” Eckley said. on the NBC TV series America’s Got Talent. With a much younger-based team than “I definitely think it’s something that’s most other pride cheer groups, CSL is needed here more than anywhere. And also planning a bingo fundraiser where if a Pride Cheerleading Association can the cheerleaders will be auctioned off for thrive in Salt Lake, it can thrive anydates. Proceeds from the event will go to where,” Eckley said. “Experience is nice, the Utah AIDS Foundation and CSL. but heart and determination is so much People of all ages, fitness abilities and ex- more important.” perience are invited to join the squad. The CSL is looking forward to performances team also needs managers and marketing this spring for the Utah Blitz, a female footrepresentatives to help with performances ball team, as well as other fundraisers, and and other events. The events will be posted of course, Utah Pride. After gaining steam on cheersaltlake.org and on their Facebook over the next few months, tryouts will be page. A recent YouTube video, titled Cheer held in the summer. It is the first charter of Salt Lake Teaser, showcases the phenomthe PCA in the region and all participants enal talent on the team and has already are volunteers. been viewed hundreds of times. “We want everyone to come and check For more information about the league or to us out. We’ll need performers, managers donate, go to cheersaltlake.org.
sanctity of marriage Kim Kardashian – celeb mom? Just months after ending her extremely brief marriage to NBA star Kris Humphreys, Kim Kardashian is reportedly looking to adopt a child. The socialite and reality TV star has apparently filed all the necessary paperwork in becoming an adoptive parent. In true form of illustrating the so-called sanctity of marriage and families, she will be adopting a child, something a gay couple in Utah still cannot do. Apparently because children will be better off with a
Kardashian than with a loving and committed gay couple.
as Washington, Maine and Maryland face voter referendums on gay marriage, and Proposition Swinging toward equality 8 is likely to move to the U.S. Nearly half of Americans support Supreme Court. laws allowing gay couples to be married while 40 percent oppose Hulk Hogan sex tape shopped such measures with the rest A sex tape with Hulk Hogan undecided, according to a recent and an unidentified woman Wall Street Journal and NBC poll. clearly not his wife or ex-wife is In 2009, support for marriage being shopped around to porn equality was only at 41 percent studios. Currently, no one is takwith 49 percent opposed. In ing the bait. Celebrity sites The just three years, the measured Hollywood Gossip and TMZ are support for gay marriage is sky- reporting they have obtained rocketing. Other recent national a copy of the tape on which polls, including some from CNN, Hogan, with his signature blond Gallup, and The Associated hair and overly tanned muscles, Press, report majority support tells the woman that he “started on the issue. The poll comes to work out again.”
Bill approving MLK commemorative license plate turns to abortion, gay marriage A bill approving a commemorative license plate for Martin Luther King Jr. was thrown into the discussions, earlier in the legislztive session, about abortion and gay marriage when Republican lawmakers voiced concern about the definition of human rights. A portion of the license-plate sales, if passed, would go to a program to help educate young Utahns about human rights. When asked what sort of rights would be discussed, Utah Martin Luther King Human Rights Foundation chairman Roderic Land spoke about food, shelter, security and education. Rep. Brad Daw, R-Orem, said allowing the license plate made him “uncomfortable.” Rep. Jim Nielson, R-Bountiful, said he understands the rights in the Constitution, but is “very challenged” to see feeding the needy a basic function of the government. Daw continued to press Land about the group and asked him his personal
views on social issues. “Do we have a right to have an abortion?” asked Daw. “I believe in choice,” said Land. “Do we have a right to marry who we want?” Daw continued. “It’s a choice,” Land said. The bill eventually cleared the Legislature. Utah has specialty license plates for groups that can have at least 500 people to sign up for them. The specialty plates are $35 a year and the money goes to the individual groups, in this case the Martin Luther King Jr. Civil Rights Support account managed by the Utah Department of Community and Culture. Many other groups have specialty license plates, including hunters, fishers and ATV riders. The money from the plates will be used for minority scholarships and internships as well as a summer civil-rights education
program for students. However, Daw said the bill “leaves ourselves open to things, frankly, I don’t agree with.” The bill passed out of the House Transportation Committee with a 7-3 vote after Rep. Steve Handy, R-Layton, said the debate had gone off track and the foundation had already met the legislative standards for the plates.
MARCH 15, 2012
snaps & slaps
SLAP: Cornhusker coach speaks out against gay equality As the Omaha City Council heard testimony from dozens of people on an anti-discrimination ordinance, the testimony of University of Nebraska Assistant Football Coach Ron Brown stuck out. The hearing was packed with supporters and opposers, and dozens testified for and against the measure. Brown, antigay and a supposed Christian football coach, attacked the bill and said it would lead to the destruction of society. The proposed measure is garnering national attention and anti-gay groups, such as the National Organization for Marriage, are also attacking it as a step toward gay marriage.
SLAP: Gay Chilean beaten, burned and branded
from the editor
Queer issues prove difficult for Democratic hopeful By Seth Bracken
“It’s come to the point where you almost can’t run unless you can cause people to salivate and whip each other with big sticks. You almost have to be a rock star to get the kind of fever you need to
survive in American politics.” —Hunter S. Thompson
he Utah Democrats are at it again. With November getting closer and closer by the minute, the Republicans are duking it out for the presidential nomination, and here at home the governor’s position is up for grabs. The Democrats appear to have hand-selected the textbook candidate for the job, but has he earned the support of the queers? With a few insignificant intraparty challenges, Gov. Gary Herbert is likely to slide to an impressive win in the delegation and land his party’s nomination for his current seat. On the other side of the ticket, the Democrats chose a war veteran with an astonishing record. He owns real estate companies that help provide affordable housing for the impoverished. He’s a faithful husband and father of five children. He’s even white and Mormon, for god’s sake! The man has leadership experience in the Army, he’s been on numerous small business administration boards and you just can’t help but
like the guy. With an enormous smile and an infectious grin, he simply commands attention. On paper, the only thing holding back Peter Cooke from packing his bags for the governor’s mansion is the big ‘D’ that will be next to his name on the ballots. Even amidst multiple scandals, Herbert destroyed Salt Lake County Mayor Peter Corroon in 2010 with more than 70 percent of the vote. Again on paper, the race seemed impossible for Herbert to win; he was embroiled in several political scandals, he’s a college dropout and presents himself to the public about as well as a damp rag. Corroon was the popular mayor of Utah’s largest county. He received a bachelor’s degree from Carnegie-Mellon University and a master’s degree from New York University. Despite the differences, the race was lost well before November and Corroon had no chance. Attending the press conference where Cooke officially announced his candidacy,
the air was electric. With heartfelt speeches and rousing chants, the Democrats nearly instilled faith in one of their biggest skeptics: me. But while trying to uncover Cooke’s stances on allowing gay couples to adopt and protecting queers in the workplace and housing, I was shocked by what I heard. Rather than making an all-inclusive stance concerning gay rights and how he needed the gays and lesbians to help him into office, his spokesperson denied any comment concerning second-parent adoptions. The spokesperson chose instead to tell me that Cooke took his religious affiliation to Mormonism very seriously and would speak only of his support of the nondiscrimination ordinances. He completely refused to comment on all other gay issues. The logic behind skirting the issues is obvious: if he avoids tough subjects and taking, what in Utah may be viewed as extreme stances, he can appeal to more voters. But if he doesn’t stand a chance in November, no chance whatsoever, why does he care? Party insiders have informed me that he is extremely gay friendly and I have read statements made by Cooke in the past where he insinuated support of gay marriage. So, the only conclusion I am left with is that he is convinced that he can win, that there is a possibility that he’ll be selected by Utah voters to lead the state. This only leaves me with one question: Do I want to support a candidate that thinks he can win only by avoiding the issues that are most important to me? Q
A horrific attack on a gay man in Chile left him in a coma after he was beaten, cut, branded and burned. Daniel Zamudio, 24, was found in Parque San Borja on March 3. His attackers struck him with blunt objects, such as baseball bats, cut off part of his ear, carved swastikas into his stomach and burned his body with cigarettes. Zamudio’s mother told local news outlets that her son had gone to work on Friday but was not seen again until Saturday morning. She said neoNazi groups had threatened him before in a popular Santiago nightclub.
SNAP: ‘8’ raises millions A staging of former Utahn Dustin Lance Black’s play 8 attracted more than 200,000 online viewers and raised $2 million to continue the fight for marriage equality in California and elsewhere. Play organizers also call the event a success due to the awareness around gayrights issues that were raised. Actors Brad Pitt, George Clooney, Jane Lynch, Martin Sheen and others were featured. A stage reading of the play comes to Utah this summer.
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the straight line Setting the record straight
MARCH 15, 2012
By Bob Henline
n Feb. 29 a new group launched onto the Utah political scene. Human Dignity Utah staged a rally in the Capitol Rotunda, bearing signs and shouting to Utah’s political elite that “enough is enough!” The impetus was the failure, for the fifth consecutive year, of the Utah Legislature to extend simple housing and employment protections to all Utah citizens, regardless of sexual orientation and gender identity. The bill died a lonely death in committee, not even reaching the Senate floor. This year’s bill, SB51, sponsored again by long-time LGBT ally Senator Ben McAdams, was officially tabled in the Senate Government Operations and Political Subdivisions Committee. Sens. Margaret Dayton, Peter Knudson, Daniel Thatcher, and Scott Jenkins voted to table, substituting Sen. Luz Robles’ motion to advance the bill to the Senate floor. The LGBT community rallied for this bill, packing the hearing room beyond capacity. In fact, there were people forced to remain outside the room. That didn’t, of course, prevent Utah’s Eagle Forum President, Gayle Ruzicka, from getting into the room. She was escorted in by Senate staffers, past the spectators outside, and seated on the dais with the elected members of the committee. Utah’s honorary legislator. Over the testimony of several supporters, it was Gayle’s voice heard by the committee. Following that mockery of the political process, Weston Clark engaged Alan Anderson, Megan Risbon and me in an effort to show the Legislature the anger and frustration of this community. We decided to start Human Dignity Utah and to launch it with a rally at the State Capitol. Our initial conversations about this included the obvious anger and frustrationdriven questions about why that one voice was heard when all others were ignored. I answered that question with this thought: Gayle Ruzicka has power in Utah because there is a perception that failure to follow her lead will have consequences at convention and at the polls. She has been able to organize her followers and use that leverage to replace legislators who don’t comply with her wishes. She has been very effective, for a very long time. The key, then, to diminishing her apparent stranglehold on the Utah Legislature is to somehow alter that perception, to demonstrate to our elected officials that there are other players involved that can bring as much, if not more, pressure. Another part
of that, in my opinion, is to open the process and reveal the opposition. And that is what I did. Using super-elite hacker techniques, I typed “Utah Eagle Forum” into my Facebook search bar. It returned a “closed group” page for the Utah Eagle Forum that listed 64 members. Utilizing yet another privacy-invading technique, I moved my cursor to the “See All” link and clicked. Voila, I was inside! I took that list, complete with the already-included links to those members’ pages, and published them on my blog. I included the following commentary: “Take a peek at these people’s pages, send them a note, ask them why they support a hate group like Utah Eagle Forum. Let’s start a discussion that will be as unpleasant to them as it has been for Utah’s LGBTQ community, thanks to them.” My blog post was published on Feb. 8 and the idea behind it is a simple one: remove Gayle’s base of power. She happily serves as a lightning rod, and no amount of negative attention or press seems to bother her. But what about her supporters? Do they really want the public at large knowing they support a group that actively promotes discrimination and bigotry? Since then I’ve received a few less-thanpleasant messages and comments, but I have not backed down. The day before the Human Dignity Rally, I received a call from Rosemary Winters at The Salt Lake Tribune. She asked why I felt it necessary to expose the members of this group, and if I thought it was appropriate to label them as assholes and try to embarrass them. I told Rosemary the following: I didn’t encourage or incite anyone to violence or harassment. If they are embarrassed by their association with this group, why are they associated? I didn’t publish anything that wasn’t already in the public domain. Trying to sit down and talk with these people had failed miserably. What Rosemary decided to print, however, is that Janalee Tobias (Google that one, you’ll get a few chuckles) was scared because her name was out there and that she had asked the South Jordan Police for extra patrols in her neighborhood. “How can you feel good about terrorizing people that you don’t even know?” she was quoted as saying. I’m at a loss as to how my publicizing her as a member of a public group to which she openly belongs constitutes terrorism.
I can’t imagine how this is more “terrorizing” than the bullying that has been dished out to Utah’s LGBT community because of her and others of her ilk. The lack of ironical awareness on both her part and that of Winters is astounding. But that’s the direction the Tribune decided to go. On the day of the rally Tobias showed up with a couple of her pals and confronted me. They expected me to break away from helping stage the rally and distributing signs in order to chat with them. I declined. Moments later, a group of four of them approached me and started shouting me down, with KUTV’s Rod Decker and his film crew right there. KUTV 2 News, in a remarkably shallow bit of reporting, opened the story with the following: “Utah gay people are angry at legislators, and Eagle Forum supporters are angry at one gay person.” They followed up with “Bob Henline published names and addresses of Eagle Forum supporters, and that created some heavy words at the rally.” Along with several others, I’ve posted comments on KUTV’s site informing them of their mistakes, but they’ve yet to make any corrections or retractions. First, although this doesn’t really bug me, I’m not gay; I’m a straight ally. But the real issue is that I didn’t publish any addresses as I’m being accused. I did publish, in a separate post, the address of Utah’s Eagle Forum VP of Operations, Karen Clark, which is readily available on the UEF website. I invited people to knock on her door and inquire about why her organization promotes bigotry. It became more interesting after the rally. We passed out the blue forms and encouraged the attendees to write a note to the senators who voted to table the bill. As one could imagine, with tempers being flared, some notes went beyond the boundaries of what one would call normal civility. One such naughty person even used the ‘F’ word when addressing Dayton. Dayton, being who and what she is, called the Tribune. In comes Lee Davidson to write another pile of one-sided tripe about the rudeness and incivility of the LGBT community. Nowhere in the article did Davidson reference the fact that rally organizer Weston Clark specifically requested that all notes be civil, nor the fact that Utah’s Legislature and people such as Dayton, Jenkins, and honorary Rep. Ruzicka have been using disgusting and degrading terminology when referring to the LGBT community for years. One person called Dayton a “mean fucker,” so she’s crying foul. I wish I could say I’m sorry that Dayton feels insulted by that note, but honestly, she’s earned every bit of ire that’s coming and more. Apparently these people feel that their bullying of Utah’s lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender citizens is perfectly acceptable as long as they wrap it in the cloak of religious freedom and don’t
use swear words. Well, we’re here to say it’s not OK, and enough is enough! Human Dignity Utah will be very active moving forward. Dayton and Jenkins are both up for reelection this year, and they will be hearing more about their poor decisions and unacceptable treatment of their constituents. I know that not everyone approves of “in-your-face” aggressive tactics. There are many for whom I hold a great deal of respect that don’t. But we’ve played nice. We’ve gone through committee hearings and we’ve listened and we’ve negotiated. While 14 municipalities have moved forward, the state government is moving backwards. The only way to make that change is to force these people to the table, to make them negotiate with lawmakers like McAdams and Robles, to sit down with groups like Equality Utah. We need to be loud in order to make them listen. We also need to shine a light on Utah’s hate machine. It’s unlikely we’ll ever change the mind of someone like Gayle Ruzicka or even any of her more rabid followers, but if we keep a light on that group and it starts to wither, so will Gayle’s power. When I published my blog post on Feb. 8, there were 64 members of that Facebook group. When I checked on March 2, there were 58. A good friend of mine said it simply. He said, “Bob, they all want to be bigots but they don’t want their neighbors to know about it. Putting them under the light makes them feel shame.” If shame is what it takes, then that’s the tactic I’ll put to use. There are more of us than them. There are more open-minded, caring people in Utah than there are backward bigots. Change will happen when we make those in office take note of those numbers. Q
MARCH 15, 2012
lambda lore An accidental activist
By Ben Williams
hile I never met Wendy Chandler Weaver, I feel she is truly one of the greatest champions of the gay-rights movement in Utah. She is someone all gay people and allies should know. She calls herself an “accidental activist.” I call her a hero. Wendy was hired in 1980 by the Nebo School District to work at Spanish Fork High School teaching physical education, and psychology. Raised Mormon, Wendy married fellow educator Gary Weaver, and had two kids. As an educator Wendy’s credentials were “impeccable” and as a coach she led the Spanish Fork girls volleyball team to four state, and eight regional, championships; she retained an overall record of 263 wins-78 losses and in 1994 was named Utah’s 4-A “Coach of the Year.” However, in 1997, the school district was looking upon her as a pariah. Early in 1997, Wendy divorced her husband and moved into a new home in Salem, Utah with her lover, Rachael Smith.
Weaver’s ex-husband, who also worked for the school district, confided in colleagues and administrators. The fact that Wendy was living with another woman, who was also a divorcee, immediately became the subject of conversation in both the school and community. When a parent saw Wendy and Rachael walking arm-in-arm at a community softball game, word of her “new sexual orientation” spread like wildfire throughout Salem and Spanish Fork. However, Wendy’s real troubles began when she telephoned a student about attending a summer volleyball camp. The girl asked Wendy directly if she was a lesbian. Wendy, true to her integrity, answered yes. The girl quit the team, saying that she “didn’t want to be exposed to it [homosexuality],” and told her parents. After the district learned of Wendy’s “marital-like” relationship with another woman, they began to make her life hell. In July 1997, the Spanish Fork High School principal wrote to Wendy, “I have
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determined that it will be in the best interest of the students, the school and the district if I assign someone else to the task” of coaching the volleyball team, despite the fact that she had led the team to four state championships. The next day she received a memo from the Nebo District Director of Human Resources forbidding her to discuss her “homosexual orientation or lifestyle” on or off campus. It warned Wendy not to discuss her sexual orientation with students, staff, or student’s parents, and even at home, or she would be terminated. In the fall, the school district went as far as to place a gag order not only on Wendy but also her ex-husband. They were prohibited from discussing her sexual orientation or lifestyle. The 40-year-old Wendy was finally fed up with the school officials heavy-handedness. She approached the Utah’s chapter of the America Civil Liberty Union believing that the district’s demands violated her constitutional rights. The ACLU agreed and so did the Utah State Office of Education which said that state policies “do not extend to private life, unless the conduct would affect a teacher’s work role.” Wendy filed suit in U.S. District Court for Utah, “alleging that the school district is violating her rights of free speech, privacy and equal protection under the U.S. Constitution.” The story of Wendy’s suit went out on The Associated Press national wire. The Utah chapter of the American Civil Liberties Union was then “deluged” with telephone calls from around the country interested in the story. However, in Utah County, after Wendy filed her lawsuit, Spanish Fork parents complained to the Nebo School District and 3,000 residents signed a petition for her removal. In late November, a meeting of the Nebo County Board of Education was packed with supporters and those demanding her resignation. The board chose to pass off the resolution of Wendy’s fate to the courts. A month later Utah County’s Eagle Forum, incensed that she still held a job as a teacher, found Matt Hilton, a right-wing attorney to challenge her in court. On Dec. 23, 1997, Hilton, representing the “Citizens of Nebo School District for Moral and Legal Values,” filed a suit accusing Wendy of behavior “unbecoming of a teacher.” One of the charges was that “Defendant Weaver engages in sodomy as defined under Utah criminal law.” Hilton alleged that Weaver was guilty of a whole “laundry list of illegal activities ranging from child abuse and sodomy to unprofessional conduct as a teacher.” They even accused her of practicing psychology without a license. They charged that Wendy “directed and encouraged a network of physically affectionate female volleyball
players.” The suit also named the State Board of Education as a defendant for not revoking Weaver’s teaching certification. Wendy said the most painful thing about the suit was the implication she did not lead a moral life. “I’ve taught 17 years and all of a sudden I’ve become this terrible, horrible, immoral thing? The way I honestly and truly feel is that I am more moral being when I am with Rachel than in all the years I was with my husband.” Nearly a year after Wendy filed suit against the school district, Judge Bruce Jenkins of the federal 10th District court ordered the school district to pay Wendy the $1,500 in back pay she had requested; to remove the administrative gag orders from her personnel files, and to reinstate her as women’s volleyball coach at Spanish Fork High, which she declined. The bid to silence Wendy cost the district $61,910 when the judge ordered them to pay Wendy’s attorney fees and legal expenses in her year-long legal battle. School officials decided not to file an appeal of Jenkins’ ruling. Even with this victory, Wendy was still facing the suit filed against her by Hilton’s Eagle Forum backers. By spring 1999, the lawsuit was dismissed, all but two complaints that claimed Wendy violated the religious and personal rights of some of her students. The plaintiffs claimed that Wendy criticized the LDS Church in class and that her access to the girl’s locker room violated one student’s religious rights because of her beliefs. However, even these were dismissed to clear the way for an appeal of the case to the Utah Supreme Court. Finally four years later, in April 2003, the suit filed by Hilton finally reached the Utah Supreme Court. The justices ruled that the hiring and firing of teachers should be left and a to education officials and that Wendy’s op-ented ponents “lack a legally protective interest Som in this controversy.” isn’t a Wendy, finally freed from the encum- I th brances of the legal system, said of her ad-stems versaries, “I believe that they’re scared toisn’t i have their kids see someone who is gay buttracte is happy and they like. That doesn’t go with On their perception that gay people are evil orgende the bo unhealthy.” In June 2003 the U.S. Supreme Court For struck down state laws which made sod-memb omy a crime. This was the last weapon con-or les of the servatives could legitimately use against On gay people. Now it was over. On this ocevent casion Utah Gay Rights activist Michael lesbia Mitchell commented that the threat ofthink going through an ordeal like Wendy did is Alo gone. “It means that the heart of our livesare of can no longer be made a crime and thus, For there is no excuse for treating us as any-slut. A thing other than full partners in our greatmost democracy.” Q Plu
State or not tion. about d not s and rible, honmoral all the
MARCH 15, 2012
creep of the week Kirk Cameron By D’Anne Witkowski
n March 2, Kirk Cameron, for some reason, was on CNN’s Piers Morgan Tonight. To many viewers d suit it must have come as quite a shock Bruce that he was still alive (that was Corey court Haim, folks). But if you want to get people Wendy talking about you again, your best bet is ested; to go on TV and say something crazy. And rdersthat’s just what Cameron did. nstate Now, Cameron’s extreme-right beliefs Span-are no secret. He’s a pin-up boy for zealous . TheChristianity these days. But usually the strictstuff that comes out of his mouth falls on a themlimited audience. Not so this time. legal During the interview, Morgan asked attle.Cameron about gay marriage. Cameron n ap-responded, “I believe that marriage was defined by God a long time ago. Marriage s still lton’s 9, the comd the me of d that class room ts bethese an apBy H. Rachelle Graham Court. isexuals are sometimes left be3, the hind in the world of lesbian, gay and Utah transgender. Many feel they don’t at the have a solid place in the community be left and are often ridiculed for not being oriy’s op-ented one way or the other. terest Some may even argue that bisexuality
is almost as old as dirt and it was defined in the garden between Adam and Eve, one man one woman for life, ’til death do you part. So I would never attempt to redefine marriage and I don’t think anyone else should either. So do I support the idea of gay marriage? No, I don’t.” Now, someone who believes in evolution obviously wouldn’t be making the argument that marriage was older than dirt. Certainly if we turn to science we would find otherwise. But facts are for the godless. I think it’s also important to point out that the Bible says a lot of stuff about marriage, and it isn’t all “one man, one woman for life.” Some crazy shit happens in the Bible, people. Morgan then asks if homosexuality is a
sin. “I think that it’s unnatural,” Cameron said. “I think that it’s detrimental and ultimately destructive to so many of the foundations of our civilization.” How does Cameron know what will “ultimately” be “destructive to so many of the foundations of our civilization,” you ask? Well, because he’s seen the future. He starred in the low budget movie based on Tim LaHaye’s Left Behind series, a zany Armegeddon-Rapture rom-com. He’s no doubt read the whole series. He knows the Truth. But what if one of Cameron’s six kids is gay? “I’d sit down and I’d have a heart-toheart with them,” Cameron said. “Just like you would with your kids.” Morgan interrupted: “But if one of my sons said that, I’d say, ‘That’s great son, as long as you’re happy.’ What would you say?” “Well, I wouldn’t say ‘that’s great son as long as you’re happy,’” Cameron responded. “I’m gonna say there’s all sorts of issues that we need to wrestle through in our life and just because you feel one way doesn’t mean
we should act on everything that we feel.” Oh boy! Here’s hoping that none of the Cameron kids are gay. And here’s hoping that if they are, they’re also strong enough to break away from Daddy’s homophobic stronghold and misguided sense of morality. Cameron’s comments caused quite a stir, needless to say. Morgan even said that Cameron was “brave” for saying these things. I don’t think “brave” is the right word. “Tone deaf” or “ignorant” feels more accurate to me. And that’s the Truth. Q
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isn’t a sexual identity. cum- I think the refusal to take bi seriously er ad-stems from an element of jealousy. I mean red toisn’t it the greatest that people can be atay buttracted to both genders. o with One of the problems with loving both evil orgenders is it creates confusion all across the board. Court For example, a bisexual who dates a e sod-member of the same sex is considered gay n con-or lesbian. While a bi who dates a member of the opposite sex is considered straight. gainst On the other hand, a true bisexual won’t is oceventually pick a team and become gay or chael lesbian. Despite what Dan Savage might eat ofthink. did is Along with inaccurate beliefs, bisexuals r livesare often mislabeled. thus, For instance, a bi is not automatically a s any-slut. A few bisexuals have threesomes, but greatmost don’t. So quit asking. Plus it is often assumed a bi will cheat
because they tire of the gender they’re dating. This is rare and far from the truth. Bisexuals are no more likely to cheat than gays and lesbians. Also, bisexuals often dislike being put into a box with a word like “bisexual.” Many prefer to think in terms of a spectrum when it comes to who they love and want to be intimate with. Some people who claim their lesbian and gay are really bisexual. They likely do this to avoid any type of stigma. To love a bisexual you have to listen to them and believe they are not a mythical creature. Take stock in the fact they are not going to change to your liking. Listen to them and realize it’s hard to be attracted to both genders, especially when it goes unrecognized. But, bisexuals exist and are not Disney characters. I know first-hand that bisexuality is a real thing and is not something the rest of the rainbow created for humorous effect. In fact, its is not easy to be any label on the rainbow of sexuality. We need to be friends and treat each other with equal respect and humanity. If we don’t respect each other, who will? Q
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thinking out loud
slob, I’m told, which led to the accidental discovery of penicillin. It’s the cumulative effect of of our choices that moves us along. Everything counts. A donation to the losing side, or a momentary decision to turn left, not right. L ast month in Maryland, Republican delegate Wade Kach, an opponent of same-sex marriage, found himself seated next to a number of same-sex couples testifying at a committee hearing: “I saw so much love,” he said. “When this hearing was over, I was a changed person in regard to this issue.” He voted for progress the next week. Q
type that can resolve fairly quickly, usually within a couple weeks. Though it may lead to extreme gastrointestinal illness, it is rarely life threatening. It’s commonly spread through “fecal/oral contact.” This essentially means that the virus is present in the feces and when people do not properly wash their hands after using the bathroom, the virus is present on their hands. By Lynn Beltran When an infected person then touches s hepatitis an STD? The answer is compli- another object such as food, or a surface cated. My official response is yes and no. where food is prepared, or even any utenWhat people do not often realize is sils, essentially that food becomes contamthat there are several hepatitides; some are transmitted through sexual contact and some are transmitted through other behaviors or routes of exposure. Regardless of transmission, hepatitis is defined as a viral infection that causes an inflammation of the liver that, over a period of time, may lead to impaired liver function. As our body’s filtration system, the liver is regarded as a vital organ. Chronic liver disease or impaired liver function can lead to an impaired quality of life and/or a premature death. The most common strains of hepatitis inated. Anyone who ends up eating the inare types A, B and C, and all are consid- fected food is then infected through fecal/ ered to be blood-borne pathogens. Each oral contamination. Hepatitis A can also be type is unique in its presentation and in transmitted indirectly through rectal sex, its disease course. Some cases of hepati- as fecal oral contamination is more likely tis resolve quickly, whereas others become to occur during rimming. chronic. The good news is that vaccines The symptoms of hepatitis A are mostly are available to protect against hepatitis A related to gastrointestinal illness and inand hepatitis B. There is no known vaccine clude such things as diarrhea, vomiting, to protect against hepatitis C. As a result, stomach cramping and flu-like symptoms. hepatitis C is one of the most common in- Since the infection involves the liver, it may fectious diseases. Men who have sex with also lead to jaundice or a yellowing of the men are considered to be high risk for ac- eyes. Since hepatitis A is spread through quiring hepatitis B and C, due to the nature both casual and intimate contact, in order of their sexual activity. The consequences to best control the spread, anyone who is of hepatitis can be exaggerated in some- thought to be infected should seek medical one with another chronic infection such care. Treatment such as immunoglobulin as HIV. is available to help reduce the length and Hepatitis A: This is the one that we severity of the illness. Vaccine for hepatitis usually associate with a restaurant. It’s a A is recommended for men who have sex
with men and for anyone who works in the food-service industry. Hepatitis B: It is most commonly spread during sexual activity or through sharing needles during intravenous drug use with someone who is infected. The most common route of transmission is through sexual contact. Hepatitis B is considered to be a chronic infection where symptoms do not begin to manifest for many years. Some subtle symptoms may appear early on and require diagnostic testing of the liver to be appropriately diagnosed. As it progresses, symptoms include chronic fatigue, flu-like symptoms, chronic gastrointestinal illness and jaundice. Over time, hepatitis B impairs the liver. Some people who are exposed to hepatitis B may clear the virus on their own, others are not so lucky. The vaccine available against hepatitis B requires a series of shots. Vaccine is recommended for men who have sex with men and for anyone who has a history of intravenous drug use. Hepatitis C: It is one of the most common infections out there, particularly among those with a history of drug use. It is most commonly spread through sharing needles during intravenous drug use, although it is estimated that up to 10 percent of cases are spread through sex. Transmission during sexual contact has risen in recent years mostly among those who have sexual partners with a history of injection drug use. It is most commonly a chronic infection and acts much the same way that hepatitis B does. Symptoms are very similar and it requires diagnostic blood testing to identify infection and the stage of the disease. There is currently no known vaccine to protect against hepatitis C. Q
Why waiting for LGBT equality is a waste of time
on the other hand, have a big stake in the outcome. Any cultural progress we’ve made has been hard won, and most definitely not a steady climb. A few people made a choice one way instead of another and we moved forward — or nearly as often, back. Think of the 1896 Supreme Court decision in Plessy v. Ferguson that kept Jim Crow alive for 60 more years. Or the millions lost in the Holocaust — we’ll never know what they would have given the world had they lived. And then there are those chance moments that changed everything: Alexander Flemming was a
Time heals no wounds By Abby Dees
hile my home state of California is still wrestling with whether allowing gay marriage will send us floating out into the Pacific, other states have seen the light and are moving into the 21st century. If voter initiatives don’t ruin it, Maryland and Washington are set to be the seventh and eighth states to recognize same-sex marriage. Thus, it appears we are generally moving forward however hard the fearmongers are trying to stop us. This seems right, of course, and how things often evolve: in a gentle, steady climb, punctuated by a few setbacks, but thankfully more victories in the end. Sooner or later, fairness will prevail. It just takes time. Yeah, right. The idea that positive change will always happen “in time” might be the most self-destructive idea. It’s a ubiquitous American history trope, and how I learned (or failed to learn) history in high school: The past was mired in myth and darkness, but we evolved steadily in an upward journey toward enlightenment. Cultural progress is a foregone conclusion. When we imagine that 30 years from now we’ll all be wondering what the big deal was, way back when, about LGBT rights, we are invoking this same idea. It’s sort of like asking, “Can you believe we once had segregation?” Sometimes, remembering our ancestors’ ignorance can make us feel good about ourselves now. For example, and with all due respect to the amazing actresses in The Help, I felt like that film was supposed to make me feel good about not being a racist without me actually having to do anything. That’s all right to an extent — such tales about our past can remind us of our shared values. The problem with this kind of thinking, though, is that Time is suddenly the main character in our story and the primary agent of social change. All the choices our forebears made, to be brave or cowardly, to be generous or mercenary, to take action or to indulge complacency, don’t seem to matter much when progress is inevitable either way. And we still get to feel good about the future. The reason I’m bringing this up is that I’ve been struggling lately to understand why people I care about support candidates who have crappy civil-rights records. I haven’t understood how someone could look me in the eye and declare her support for Santorum or (insert your favorite homophobe here) because she’s
worried about taxes, or socialized GodzillaCare, or whatever. I finally understood last week, when my partner reminded me how perplexed her parents were by the fact that we donated a big chunk of money to defeat Prop 8 — cash that we could have eaten for all the good it did. Why do we always have to push so hard, they wondered, when things will get better in time? They might, but not because of time. Time doesn’t care if we spend eternity throwing mud clods at each other. People,
Sooner or later, fairness will prevail. It just takes time. Yeah, right.
Q health Is hepatitis an STD?
Hepatitis C is one of the most common infections out there.
To find out more about vaccinations for hepatitis A or hepatitis B, contact your health care provider or you may call the Salt Lake Valley Health Department at 385-468-4242.
MARCH 15, 2012
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MARCH 15, 2012
Qsaltlake wedding giveaway by Seth Bracken
ocated in beautiful Memorial Grove Park in Salt Lake City, a gorgeous and quaint reception center is nestled into the side of the hill. The Memorial House was constructed in 1890 as a stable and equipment shed. In 1926, the Service Star Legion leased the building from the city and hired architects to design a new façade. The brick building was covered with stucco, six rounded dormers were added to the roof and the east-facing windows were turned into French doors. Past uses of the house are still present, and the absolute history and beauty of the solid construction, vaulted ceilings and charming character allow the center to be small and intimate while still accommodating hundreds of wedding guests. Over the decades, the Memorial House has served as a wonderful reminder of love and commitment to so many Utah couples. Wedding vows have been exchanged and new lives have been started in the cozy location across the way from the bubbling Memorial Grove brook. Two more couples joined the ranks of those who will forever remember the House as much more than a building. Owen Cluff and Russell Snider, and Segna Batty and Elecia Hardy, the two QSaltLake wedding-winning couples, held their ceremonies and receptions at the historic building. The symbolism was stark and mesmerizing. As the same-sex couples exchanged vows on their respective wedding days, the state and federal governments paid no mind. There were no papers signed, no legal documents exchanged and their names are not registered with the government as an officially sanctioned couple. But they certainly didn’t care. The love and appreciation for one another was almost palpable. When Cluff and Snider simply said “I love you,” the words meant just as much as any other reminder or document. When the rings were exchanged, and with the first dance, the gender of the couple was secondary to the obvious love and affection for one another. While the two beautiful women had their photos taken around the Memorial House, the couple’s breathtaking smiles and devotion mirrored the past century of ceremonies and gatherings held in the same location. Just as heterosexual couples embraced and shared their first kiss as a married couple, Batty and Hardy took the next step in their relationship. Gay or straight, bisexual or transgender, the Memorial House is the perfect allegory for a companion and a reminder that absolute love is the purpose of exchanging vows and declaring devotion to one another. As rights are being secured in legal and legislative battles around the nation, these two couples, quietly and without reservation, were married. Q
Gay weddings serve as a reminder
Photos by Sasha Polak, Pumps & Pants Photography, and David Daniels, Dav.d Wedding Photography More photos available at QSaltLake.com
Ut ah Gay & Lesbian WEDDING EXPO
QSALTLAKE CORDIALLY INVITES YOU TO THE FIRST ANNUAL
Sunday, March 25 Noon–4pm Hotel Monaco • • • •
FASHION SHOW GAMES ENTERTAINMENT EXHIBITORS SEEKING YOUR BUSINESS • EVERYTHING YOU NEED FOR YOUR BIG DAY
MARCH 15, 2012
Qsaltlake wedding giveaway
It took a village
Giving away two weddings is a daunting task and couldn’t be done without the support from the community. The following vendors donated time, product and services to support the QSaltLake wedding couples and to show their support for the gay community.
Le Croissant Catering For nearly two decades, Le Croissant Catering has been a Utah staple. More than just fantastic food with only the freshest of ingredients and a fantastic presentation, the company focuses on outstanding customer service, said owner and manager Kelly Lake. “Our first and most important priority is to give our clients an event that they can be proud of,” Lake said. “We want them to be excited about the event even years after it happens.” Le Croissant again provided their services for the QSaltLake same-sex weddings. But Le Croissant does much more than weddings. The company has provided catering services to more than 1,000 different events. “We pretty much do it all,” Lake said. “From the smallest gatherings to large corporate parties, we have experience in all kinds of events. And we put just as much love into box lunches as we do into our large parties.” The company offers their services all along the Wasatch Front, Utah County and Park City. No matter the size of the gathering, Le Croissant can help plan and serve visually pleasing and stomach-pleasing food. “We focus on a few factors,” Lake said. “Happy clients, fabulous ingredients and outstanding presentation.” To schedule an event or for more info go to lecroissantcatering.com or call 801-466-2537.
Just Girl Stuff Specializing in prom and wedding dresses, Just Girl Stuff, has more than 600 dresses in stock and available for fitting. From bridesmaids to flower girls, this beautiful and queer-friendly store in Riverdale, Utah, is a must-visit for anyone, gay or straight, planning a wedding or any other special event. “Here at Just Girl Stuff we make your special occasion our number one priority.” Just Girl Stuff donated the wedding dresses for the QSaltLake Wedding Giveaway. For more information, go to justgirlstuff.com or call 801-334-0636.
wedding officiant positive change consultant leesamyers.com
Most photographers learn to take photos and then editing them is somewhat of an afterthought. While editing is important to some photographers, it definitely takes a back seat to the art of taking the photo. For David Daniels, his photography emerges from his extensive background in photo editing and design. “When I take a photo, I am always thinking about how people could use it,” Daniels said. He was a photographer for the QSaltLake same-sex weddings. “When I see a great photo opportunity, I always think of the practical application.” His background in design gives him an understanding what a designer might look for in a photo. Also, he has a degree in psychology from BYU, and he said it helps give him an interesting perspective in taking photos. It gives
him a unique approach to photography. Daniels has been involved in photography since he first discovered Photoshop in 1995. “I sort of worked backward,” Daniels said. “I started out editing the photos and realized I would be able to start taking my own photos. I knew exactly how I would want photos to be edited, so I started to take some of my own photos.” Daniels has experience photographing everything from the most basic portrait shots, to full wedding albums. He also has photographed same-sex weddings, commitment ceremonies and many other gay-themed events. “As a gay man, I feel I need to be true to myself and my friends around me,” Daniels said. To see examples of his lifestyle and journalistic photography, go to his website, daviddanielsphotography.com. For examples of his work with weddings and same-sex ceremonies, go to davidweddingphotography.com.
Ganached By Jake Ganached By Jake specializes in wedding cakes, cupcakes, pastries and much more. Owned and operated by Jake Blaine, Ganached is a shining testimony of creativity and skill. Blaine has always had a passion for baking and he decided to turn his love into a career. He graduated from Scottsdale Culinary Institute and began dazzling wedding guests, birthday party-goers and event planners with his fantastic and whimsical cakes and pastries. “Everything is made from scratch and designed to fit the personality and desires of the customer,” Blaine said. “You can count on quality and customization.” Blaine donated the wedding cakes for the QSaltLake weddings. For more info, go to ganachedbyjake.com or call 801‑556‑5971.
The Ritz Tuxedos With more than 20 tuxedo styles and more than 50 vest colors and patterns, The Ritz Tuxedos is perfect for weddings and other formal events. With same-day service and pick-up the evening before the event, the service is unbeatable. No tuxedo is more than $46. The Ritz Tuxedos donated the tuxedos to the QSaltLake Wedding Giveaway. For more information, go to theritztuxedos.com or call 801-265-0288.
The Art Floral For that last minute need, special request, custom design just that extra-special human touch, The Art Floral just can’t be beat. The Salt Lake City floral company is fullservice with same-day deliveries. For weddings, birthdays, special occasions or just to have that extra pizzazz, The Art Floral is a queer-friendly and inclusive shop to help say, “Thanks,” “I love you,” or “I’m sorry.” Go to theartfloral.com or call 801-363-0565.
(801) 521-7969 www.memorialhouse-utah.com Operated by
MEMORIAL HOUSE in Memory Grove Park
MARCH 15, 2012
Pumps & Pants Photography The engagement photos, which were also used inr the invitations, were taken by the fabulous Pumps & Pants owner Sasha Polak. Serving the queer and allied community, Pumps & Pants offers a photo studio and traveling services for all the diverse photography needs. From family portraits to wedding and commitment ceremonies, Polak is an experienced and creative photographer who caters to a queer clientele. Gays and lesbians can rest assured walking into the studio knowing they’re in the capable and friendly hands of a true “family” member. “There is nothing more rewarding than being able to communicate in a way that all people can understand. We have worked as professional photographers for many years, shooting portrait, family and fine art photography,” Polak said. “We specialize in creating a comfortable and safe photographic experience for those who may not find that with any other photographer. And in giving our community the respect and equal opportunity that should be afforded without thought by others, we have grown to appreciate all people, regardless their stories.” Go to pumpsandpants.com or call 801-520-7297.
Memorial House www.pumpsandpants.com 801.520.7297
Nestled in the beautiful and serene backdrop of Memory Grove Park, the Memorial House is the perfect location for any special day. The
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historic charm of Memorial House, coupled with the amazing elegance and beauty of Memory Grove Park make this an ideal year-round choice for weddings and other ceremonies. Memorial House provides the perfect ambiance for an elegant dinner or reception. Guests will feel right at home with the warm wood floors, large fireplace and open layout. During the summer months, the charming French doors open to the patio, where guests are invited to take in the sweeping views of the park and to relax under the shade of large umbrellas. In the colder months, the fireplace provides guests with a cozy atmosphere on your perfect winter night. Go to memorialhouse-utah.com or call 801‑521-7969.
Specialty Linens & Chair Covers With more than 50,000 pieces of linen available in 60 different colors, Specialty Linens & Chair Covers has one of Utah’s largest selections available for rent. From weddings to small family gatherings, Specialty Linens has a wide array colors and sizes. “We really try to match the needs of the customers with our large supply of linens,” said Bruce Bevan, owner and manager. “While we don’t have a limitless supply, we usually find a way to help out with last-minute orders.” To browse all the selections and availability, go to specialtylinens.us. And while it’s advisable to reserve orders a few months in advance, even last-minute orders are accepted.
MARCH 15, 2012
d with ory hoice A newcomer to the wedding and disc jockey orial scene, Roger Cox got his business off the ground n ele- in December of 2011. With an education in ght at Spanish and music, Cox has used his talents place hosting a program on KCPW, but has wanted to take his work directly to the community. hs, “Everything in my life has to do with music,” io, Cox said. “It is so important to me.” eping His new company, Soundwrite LLC, is just hade starting and he offers DJ and other emcee and he firehosting services for weddings, events, parties ere and dances. While music is his passion, being involved with the community is also very important, he said. “I want to help make your event the best it can be,” Cox said. “Whether it’s a corporate gathering, a same-sex ceremony or just a family ilgathering, let me help you.” s& He can be reached at email@example.com or at ctions 801-609-4332. family ay
The Window Box Floral & Interior
said With cutting edge designs that can fit any budget, The Window Box Floral & Interior is worth we nd a the drive up north. Located in Layton, Utah, the chic and sexy floral company is a one-stop shop for weddings, special occasions or just the gift y, go ble to for that special someone. Whether looking for en a complete wedding design with a thousanddollar budget, or a more modest $100 wedding,
The Window Box has just the design. “Our designers are fantastic and are so great at what they do,” said Jeff Weaver. “We have so many different options for everyone. Whatever your budget might be, we’ll find something to make it special.” With complete floral service for every occasion, featuring the designs of Tracy Barlow, Davis County’s only AIFD accredited designer, they look forward to an opportunity to be of service. For more information, go to thewindowbox.com or call 801-546-3649.
Salt Lick Printing QSaltLake has branched out into short-run printing, as well as printing programs for arts organizations and other events. Of course we had to take care of the invitations for our lucky couples. We specialize in shorter runs, saving money for people and businesses that need less than 1,000 prints. Rather than go to the expense of plates and ink, our digital press prints each page as an original, a process that is better on the environment as well as the pocketbook. The next time you need invitations, business cards, postcards, flyers, posters, etc., consider using friends you know — us! Q For more information, go to saltlickprinting.com or call 801-649-6663.
Thank you to all of our wedding contributors!
The Ritz Tuxedos Ivy Place Shopping Village 4700 S. 900 E. Salt Lake City
MARCH 15, 2012
New business to provide one-stop gay weddings
• Wedding Cakes • Cupcakes • Cookies • Pastries
When you work with Ganached by Jake, you’ll be working one-on-one with Chef Jake to custom create a wedding cake tailored to your tastes and personal style.
DJ • EMCEE • P.A. • VOICEOVER • ENGLISH/ESPAÑOL •
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top me if you’ve heard this one. A caterer, a photographer, a wedding-bag sales representative and a wedding officiant start an online one-stop, gay wedding shop in Utah. Chances are you haven’t heard it, because their idea is pretty damn original. While they’re hardly the first people to seek out gay dollars, the group is building utahgayweddings.com, a comprehensive one-stop shopping guide to gay weddings in Utah. From caterers to photographers and wedding reception centers to florists, the site will have it all. Le Croissant Catering, Pumps and Pants Photography, Leesa Myers, a wedding officiant, and Susan Passino, a wedding-bag representative, are joining forces to make shopping for gay weddings that much easier. “We want to provide that service for Utah’s gays and lesbians. We want them to know they can come to us and feel totally comfortable,” Myers said. “You won’t ever have to wonder how your caterer will react when you explain that there are two grooms. You won’t have to worry about a photographer turning you down because he or she doesn’t feel comfortable taking photos of two women wearing dresses.” In addition to peace of mind in knowing the
wedding service providers are queer-friendly, discounts will be offered for using more than one of the services on the site. Each discount will depend on the amount of service used and how many services required, but the savings will be substantial. In addition to the current four companies signed on for group discounts, deals will be struck with different reception and wedding centers to ensure the most effective use of money and help make planning the big day that much easier, Myers said. Serving the queer community is more than just a business decision, Myers said. But offering to help work with gay and lesbian couples is a personal decision to make Utah a more welcoming place, she said. “I love working with gay couples. It is absolutely my passion,” she said. “Even when it’s going to possibly affect my sales, I always advertize that I work with gay couples. I want them to know that they can feel comfortable with me.” While the website is not yet launched, those interested can email firstname.lastname@example.org. They will also be featured at the Utah Gay and Lesbian Wedding Expo on March 25, at noon, at the Hotel Monaco, 15 W. 200 South, Salt Lake City. Q
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MARCH 15, 2012
24 ARTS & ENTERTAINMENT
ARTS & ENTERTAINMENT
See Mar. 17
The boob tube, and more By Tony Hobday
There’s plenty of fabulous community arts and social events to check out, as well as two upcoming programs on the boob tube. And on that nipply note, I want to say “Sayonara Deseret Industries, I’m a gonna shoppin’ of falling rice; “What You Leave Behind” is tuesday — Australia’s “woven in the lives of others;” and, by the late at J.C. Penny!” Kudos to the big retailer (where I once most-loved circus, “KangaSusan McLain, RDT will perform “Karyo.” roos on Ice” ... tehehe! Actuworked for five years) on their new television ad camally, Circus Oz, is renowned 7:30pm, through Saturday, Black Box Theatre, Rose paign featuring that so-called abomination, the smashWagner Center, 138 W. Broadway. Tickets $30, 801for its collective mayhem 355-ARTS or arttix.org. ing Ellen DeGeneres. I think the ads are great and fa- from the moment the band strikes up until vorably use DeGeneres’ classic dry humor. You go girl! the last curtain call. The powerful acrobats friday — Don’t miss
friday — Dark Horse Company Theatre presents
Ring of Fire, a musical tribute and story loosely based on the life of country singer Johnny Cash, told through 39 of his songs, and with multimedia and spoken word. Although Cash isn’t a character in the show, it tells of a young man growing up in rural Arkansas, aspiring to be a singer; and it uses themes such as a poor economic upbringing, love and loss, family ties, adversity, and faith and compassion for those down on their luck. Cast members include Chris Glade, Austin Archer and Ginger Bess. Times vary, through March 25, Egyptian Theatre, 328 Main St., Park City. Tickets $20–30, 435-649-9371 or parkcityshows.com.
UPCOMING EVENTS Mar. 31 Amy Ray The State Room
Apr. 19 Ingrid Michaelson In The Venue
Jun. 22 kd lang Peppermill Concert Hall, Wendover
Jul. 5 Foster The People Saltair
Aug. 4-5 “8” The Play (a reading) Rose Wagner Center
QQ The documentary short film A Family Portrait follows a gay couple, John and Alen, as they discover, while raising their young boys, the meaning of love, social expectations and what it is to be a family in 21st century America. The documentary, a multiple award-winner on the festival circuit, shows the couple’s will to overcome societal challenges through the power of timeless family values. Check it out on the Discovery Channel, a 24-hour network exclusively devoted to documentary films and the independent documentary filmmaker. 8:30pm, Discovery Channel. Run time: 16 minutes.
saturDAY — Top o’ the mornin’ to you wee little dollops of Irish Creme. Today go green ... conserve water, drink more beer (but for the love of Darby O’Gill, do it responsibly). Anyhoo, just like the wee leprechaun, you too can be devilish, if you so choose, at the Saints & Sinners Ball. Those naughty, yet nice, Parkites are calling all altruists and misanthropes, gangsters and do-gooders, angels and devils, martyrs and gluttons ... to groom their slopes ... I’m uncomfortable with that comment. The merriment will begin with a cocktail hour, followed by a signature dinner and a “not-to-be-missed” live auction. Guests are encouraged to dress as their favorite saint or sinner, but it’s not required. 6pm, St. Regis Deer Valley, 2300 Deer Valley Dr. East, Park City. Tickets $150, 435-655-8252 or ecclescenter.org.
QQ Wig-wearing, boa-draped, glitter-covered fans from near and far traveled to Athens, Ga., to celebrate The B-52s’ 34th anniversary at Athens’ Classic Center. Now you can catch this milestone live concert on television. The B-52s With the Wild Crowd! Live in Athens, GA concert is “filled with all the excitement, fervor and energy of a classic B-52s dance party, a showcase for the non-stop, high-octane force of a group that hasn’t lost its youthful and dynamic energy.” 8:30pm, KUED Channel 7. Run time: 56 minutes.
defy gravity; graceful aerial artists will win your heart; knock-about comedy will blow you away; and live musicians will have you on your feet at the final note.
7:30pm, through Wednesday, Kingsbury Hall, 1395 E. Presidents Circle, UofU. Tickets $19.50–34.50, 801581-7100 or kingtix.com.
QQ She is a global superstar and the first American Idol ... well, Carrot Top was really the first. She is the incomparable Kelly Clarkson, and she will be in town tonight. The chart-topping songstress will surely amaze the audience with such hits as “Mr. Know It All” and “Because of You.” I still groove on her even though she likes Ron Paul and sported a Rachael Berry hairdo for her Super Bowl performance. 7:30pm, Maverik Center, 3200 S. Decker Lake Dr. Tickets $39.50–69.50, 800-745-3000, ticketmaster.com.
QQ Broadway’s smash-hit musical, Beauty and the Beast, aka Tony Hobday and Michael Aaron, is upon us in this spectacular touring production based on the Disney hit film. It’s the classic love story of Belle, a young woman in a provincial town, and the Beast, who is really a young prince under a spell cast by an enchantress. If the Beast can learn to love and be loved, the curse will be lifted and he’ll be transformed to his former self. Times vary, through March 25, Capitol Theatre, 50 W. 200 South. Tickets $47.50–77.50, 801-355-ARTS or arttix.org.
thursday — Four
unique dance pieces by exciting choreographers make up Repertory Dance Theatre’s sensuous movement journey — a Passage through haunted memories to the ever-changing present. “Songs I Want to Sing (to you)” explores loneliness, nostalgia, desire, and the joy and difficulty in truly being with other people; In “Ghost Ship,” marooned dancers, haunted by an ever-present past and caught in the limbo of memory, perform with a volcanic energy under a torrent of 120 pounds
Pioneer Theatre Company’s outgoing Artisitic Director, Charles Morey’s hilarious and affectionate look at the world of theater in the decade-old hit Laughing Stock. When The Playhouse, a rustic New England summer theater, schedules a repertory season of Dracula, Hamlet and Charley’s Aunt, comic mayhem ensues. I’d like to give my best wishes to Charles in his future endeavors.
7:30pm, through April 7, Pioneer Theatre, 300 S. 1400 East, UofU. Tickets $25–49, 801-581-6961 or pioneertheatre.org.
saturday — The Queens, Kings, and Androgynes are back ... are you ready for the return of the TINT Drag Show? The Utah Pride Center’s youth activity center (TINT) will be ripping the fashion runway with their fierce and unique performers. These youngsters are “queering up Utah one lip-sync at a time.” 7–9pm, Sugar Space, 616 E. Wilmington Ave. Free, but canned/frozen food donations are encouraged, utahpridecenter.org.
monday — The Westminster Concert Series presents Salt Lake City pianist Kimi Kawashima performing a Tribute to John Cage, the late, great, gay American composer. Cage was a pioneer in musical composition and was instrumental in the development of modern dance, mostly through his association with choreographer, and romantic partner, Merce Cunningham. Kawashima will do Sonatas and Interludes, a collection of 20 musical pieces for a “prepared piano” (a piano with its sound altered by objects placed between or on its strings or hammers). 7:30pm, Vieve Gore Concert Hall, Westminster College, 1840 S. 1300 East. Tickets $15, 801-832-2457 or westminstercollege.edu/concertseries.
MARCH 15, 2012
Young the Giant growing in popularity By Seth Bracken
ne year after the release of their first studio album, Young the Giant are headlining their own tour with indie-darlings Grouplove. Fresh off of performances at the MTV Video Music Awards and headlining both Lollapalooza and the Austin City Limits Music Festival, YTG is one of the fastest-rising stars in the indie-rock genre. is With accolades building, such as landing a spot he late on the Amazon.com Best Rock Albums of 2011 ” list, and being named Spin’s “Breaking Out” , Rose band and the USA Today “On the Verge” band, , 801YTG is quickly becoming a household name. Their single, “Cough Syrup” was featured in a recent and controversial episode of Glee where ny’s a student attempts suicide after being bullied because of his sexuality. or, s and To preview their upcoming concert, guitarist world Jacob Tilley chatted with QSaltLake about how far they’ve come in the past year and what to expect ing from them in the future. ew With venue after venue selling out weeks in peradvance, their stop in Salt Lake City on April 3, ley’s 6:30 p.m., at In The Venue, is likely to be sold out soon. Tickets are available at smithstix.com. ure
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You’ve just kicked off the tour. How is it going so far? The tour has been great so far. It’s been really fun and very smooth; just really great. We just spent a couple of nights in San Francisco, which was really terrific and we’re so excited because a lot of our shows are selling out. We love having all the energy. What are the biggest differences between touring with bands like Minus the Bear and Incubus and headlining? How did you prep for the tour? We’ve had other heralding tours, but nothing to this scale; nothing this large. But overall, we really didn’t change much at all. I think that’s the way it should be. We’ll be doing a lot of the same stuff for our fans. From the release of your first studio album to now, it’s only been about a year, but you’re really starting to get a lot of attention. How has the last year been? It’s definitely been interesting. It feels like there are all these extremes — like how much work goes into it and how much we enjoy doing it. It’s been fun, though. And it’s what we’ve always wanted to do. We’re very happy to be where we are now. From Lollapalooza to the VMAs, you’ve been hitting some big stages. How has that influenced your performances? What can we expect to see at your upcoming show? Our shows are relatively similar — we go out and put on an energetic live show — just your basic no-frills rock. I think the biggest change is that we’re better at playing the songs. We’re way more comfortable and confident. I think we’ve really become more
Department of Theatre
THE WORLD PREMIERE OF BRIGHDE MULLINS’S
comfortable with our music and we can really own it now.
I also love Miles Davies. I don’t have a set genre because normally I get bored and have to move on.
One of my favorite songs on your album is “Guns Out,” I was wondering if you could talk a little bit about that song and your writing process in general. How did you guys write the album? Was it a collaborative effort? That’s one of my favorite songs as well. Usually, we all get together and jam. That particular song just evolved from there. When we recorded that song we were pretty confident about it. And it’s one of those songs that I absolutely identify with it. I can honestly say it really grew on me — and now it’s one my favorites too. But that’s generally how we write, that’s usually how our process works.
Your live recording of “I Got” on the Salt Flats here in Utah is just terrific and showcases the raw musical talent of the group. How did you end up recording out there? We were driving to Seattle and we ended up playing wherever we were. We stopped and went out with our videographer and had a real great session right there in the desert. It was such a blast.
Who are some of your inspirations? Who’s on your iPod right now? Right now I am into TV on the radio. I am a huge fan and they are a huge inspiration to me. They are such gifted musicians. I love how compiled their guitars are. But normally, I am all over the place; show tunes, I love classical — especially Debussy and
What was it like performing in Utah? I love Utah. I’ve got a friend who lives there and we just hang out. I’ve never had too many adventures in Salt Lake, but I always have a good time. Last time we were there we played at a great little venue; I think it’s called Kilby Court. It was just awesome. I love that space. What can we expect to see from Young the Giant in the future? Well, we’ve got the tour that’s really going to be awesome. We’re excited to see all our fans. And then we’re going to start recording again. Q
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BABCOCK THEATRE, March 9–18
A special event to raise funds for student scholarships. www.KingsburyHall.org | 801-581-7100 | www.theatre.utah.edu
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MARCH 15, 2012
26 ARTS & ENTERTAINMENT
Idina Menzel Defies… Everything Theater icon talks queer crushes, hubby’s gay tendency and her green dreams By Chris Azzopardi
PHOTO: ROBIN WONG
dina Menzel doesn’t do anything halfway, even when she’s deciding on her gay faves. “It’s so silly,” says the homo-hearted theater queen while surfing Google for “hot gay male celebrities.” Her assistant even gets involved. “This is very important stuff,” Menzel giggles, fully immersed in her search to name her current gay crush. Neil Patrick Harris? Too typical. George Michael? Maybe 20 years ago. “Oh, I could do a woman” she realizes, before catching the unintentional humor in that: “I mean, not do a woman.” And on she goes, scouring the Web relentlessly. Again, she laughs. “(My assistant) just went onto a gay porn site. That’s helpful!” Ten minutes later, she’s got it: Jane Lynch, Wanda Sykes and Anderson Cooper, because “that makes me sound really smart.” Not that she has to sound anything but
beautiful, and that she already does — as demonstrated in her 20 years on stage, from Rent to Wicked (originating the roles of Maureen and Elphaba, respectively), and as a cradle-robbing club leader on Glee. Now the ever-sweet Broadway diva has a new live album, Idina Menzel Live: Barefoot at the Symphony, and plans to hit the road this summer for a series of tour dates. Menzel caught up with us recently to talk toes, hubby Taye Diggs’ gay tendency and learning the real definition of “white party.” Barefoot at the Symphony is the name of the new album, do you have nice feet? They’re all right. My toes are pretty in proportion to each other. No weird toes. Is the toe next to the big toe longer than the big toe? No, they’re actually nice like that. It’s just that from working out and stuff my heels are always dry. But the toes are nice!
MARCH 15, 2012
Will your tour be a lot like this album? The album is a culmination of 18 months of touring and playing with these amazing symphonies. So, this summer when I go on tour, I obviously need to retain some of the songs that I know people would shoot me for if I didn’t sing them, but I am going to clean the slate and freshen up the show and explore some brand new material.
Do people expect you to fly when you do eams“Defying Gravity”? No, I don’t think they do. (Laughs) But I’m sure they expect me to hit very dem- high notes, which isn’t always an easy thing to do.
nt How did it go over when you covered “Poker and Face” with the symphony? It’s funny: The bing audience was everyone from theater people to symphony people to just your regular crowd a new coming to see some entertainment. But “Poker Face” was great. I did it because I knew people he um- would like to see something from Glee and I ht up thought the juxtaposition of the song with the ggs’ orchestra could be really cool, but I didn’t realize on of it would become a comic piece for me. The first couple of times I did it, I remembered these stories and I stopped the full-on symphony the in the middle of the song, which you never do, to re all tell people the story behind it. Then it just started ch becoming this little creature that I used every night as a way of singing that song but also having fun the with the audience and being spontaneous. It’s On the album you recall a crush you had on a els are gay professor during your freshman year in college. What was it about him that you were so into? Well, first, I didn’t realize he was gay until later in life, but he was just so intense. He was the kind of teacher you trusted and respected so much, and that also could make you cry in a second, because he saw right through you and challenged you and expected the most of you. For me, when I got in front of class and felt like I was disappointing a teacher, I would just get so demoralized. That feeling never goes away. Whether you’re standing up in front of 10 people in a class or 5,000 people in an audience, the idea of opening your soul and making yourself vulnerable is terrifying and sometimes, if you’re not prepared, you get really thrown. Since you have a history of falling for gay men, did Taye have to pass some kind of test? No! Please. He went to the School of the Arts in Rochester and majored in theater in Syracuse,
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and so many of his friends were gay before we even met. Oh, Idina, these are all red flags. (Laughs) Yeah, he’ll even engage in “runway” at parties at the house. If we pull out the carpet and it’s late at night, Taye will even do runway ... if you give him enough alcohol. Who has the bigger gay following? I think I do! (Laughs) You know, you take everything from the gays: Taye Diggs. Kissing Puck on Glee. Waking up with Patrick Dempsey in Enchanted. What do you have to say for yourself? That’s some good stuff, huh? In my defense, I’m a mom of a 2-yearold and ... like, right now I’m in the ugliest outfit, practically pjs, and my hair hasn’t been washed in two days; if I didn’t have those opportunities, I’d never feel like a woman again. What was your recent gay cruise experience on Atlantis’ Allure of the Seas like? I learned the white party doesn’t necessarily mean you wear white suits; it means you wear as little as possible and maybe some white Hanes underwear and angel wings. (Laughs) I learned that I will never go on a cruise ship again unless it’s a gay cruise because I am now ruined forever. The creativity and the passion and the fun will be unmatched. The best audiences of my life. It was just a blast. There are a bunch of sides to yourself, but it’s nice to just let ’er rip ... and sing some duets with drag queens! What would you tell your son, Walker, if he came out to you? Hopefully by then I wouldn’t have to say much. Hopefully he’ll grow up in an environment where he won’t think much of it and it will be very commonplace, and yet, if for some reason that discussion did arise, Taye and I would say, if we were to have a son or daughter who was gay, he or she wouldn’t meet any resistance with us. We always take five steps forward and two steps back, but in our house, in our family and with our friends, he is already in the company of, and loved by, all sorts of people. (Taye and I) have very supportive parents, and so it’s more the outside world that tends to put stigma on it, even in this day and age. I’d probably say Taye has more responsibility to African-American people, not feeling like he’s let them down in some way. I think it’s just about raising a son that’s going to be mixed race and
Queer Prom utahpridecenter.org
Salt Lake Men’s Choir Summer Concert
Holi, Festival of Colors
Bill of Rights Celebration
UVU Spectrum Masquerade Prom tinyurl.com/spectrumball April 20
Day of Silence
how to tackle that and what that means — even religiously and spirituality, we have a lot of stuff ahead of us. I want to be really clear and defined so that it’s not confusing. Is your character on Glee, Shelby, done for? I don’t know. They’re saying I’m coming back, but you never know. Maybe they’ll go with another storyline. But I love being there. I love the energy on set, and I certainly enjoyed being hot-forteacher and having the 17-year-old man with the mohawk to kiss on. But they keep things really close to the vest, so it’s hard to say. Are you looking at being a part of a musical again? Yeah, but nothing that I really can speak about yet. I’m trying to give people their space to create and do their thing, but that’s my goal. I’m putting my energy toward trying to get back to New York City in an original piece, just because that’s where I’ve had the most success and where I feel the most fulfilled. That process of standing at the piano with a composer and a writer as they’re creating from scratch and using you as inspiration — there’s nothing like that. Any word on a Wicked movie? No. I just always hear that if it came about Kristin (Chenoweth) and I would probably be too old, which is really annoying considering all the CGI you can do these days. I called them and told them, “What about Avatar?!” You never know, but I kind of don’t hold my breath on that one. And I feel lucky enough that I got to do the Rent movie 10 years after I originated the role. So we’ll see about Wicked. So much has happened in your career since playing Maureen in Rent. Is that still a part of you? Yes, because I put it in my show all the time in some capacity, so it actually forces me to stay in touch with that time in my life and what it represented and how I’ve grown since then. What about Wicked? Do you have nightmares about going green? Yes! I actually have those recurring theater nightmares. It’s not always just Wicked, it could be Rent, and they just desperately need me. The girl playing the role at the time can’t get in and there’s no one around. They call me and I’m like, “Of course I remember how to do it!” and I get on a dark and dreary stage that looks nothing like any set I’ve ever been on before and I can’t remember a single line and I don’t know how to put the green makeup on and I start having a meltdown. Q July 13–15
Damn These Heels Film Festival
Utah County Affirmation Continued from page 8
Meetings will be held twice a month with one gathering focusing on more social aspects and the other being a spiritual discussion. Politics and vitriol are left at the door and all participants can feel comfortable, Horn said. “I really wanted to help people avoid the same loneliness and frustration that I had when I first started to explore,” Horn said. Affirmation was organized in Salt Lake City on June 11, 1977 by Stephan Zakharias and a group of other ex-Mormon gay and lesbians. There are now chapters around the country and a national conference is held annually. Q Meetings are held in Horn’s home and for more information about the Utah County group, go to utcoaffirmation.org or tinyurl. com/utcaffirmation. Group events and details will be posted on the website and the Facebook page.
Capitol Hill Rally Continued from page 6
identity. This year’s defeat in committee stung particularly hard because of recent polling that indicates more than 70 percent of Utahns support the measure. Also, other major organizations and corporations, including the Salt Lake Chamber, came out in public support of the measure and said the lawmaker’s inaction is impacting their business. Queer-rights activists are concerned about other areas where the Legislature failed to act to protect the citizen’s collective best interest. A bill that would have allowed gay couples and other unmarried partners to co-adopt a child was never even brought before a committee hearing. Currently, adoptive parents must be married in order for both adults to be the legal guardians. Also, a bill that would allow schools to opt-out entirely of teaching sex education courses cleared both the House and Senate. The bill also bans teachers from teaching about condoms unless asked. Q
Pride Center Golf Classic
TransAction Gender Conference
Pink Dot Utah
HRC Gala Dinner
World AIDS Day
Gay Day at Hogle Zoo
Utah Arts Festival
Salt Lake Men’s Choir
RCGSE Coronation XXXVII
Journey to Magical Peru
Utah Pride Festival
Pionude Day Campout
Park City Arts Festival
QSaltLake Lagoon Day
SAGE Garden Party
Women’s Redrock Music Fest
EU Allies Dinner
Gay Days Anaheim
Natl Coming Out Day
MARCH 15, 2012
28 ARTS & ENTERTAINMENT
what should we do this weekend?
Photo book challenges stereotypes
i dunno. where should we look?
By Seth Bracken
oh, oh, oh! there’s that new gaysaltlake.com!
gaysaltlake.com bar events, arts, restaurants, salt lake scene, fun pics BROUGHT TO YOU BY Q
xposing false stereotypes and challenging readers to take a second look, What I Thought I Saw, is a coffeetable book any Utahn could proudly display. Compiled and written by Utahns Sasha Polak, Peta Owens-Liston, Amy Albo and Zoe Rodriguez, each page tells the story of a different person whose outward appearance may be misleading. From gender identity to race and religion, the topics explored represent a true cross-blending of marginalized and stereotyped groups. The large portraits on the left-hand side of the pages accompany a background story and description of the not-so-apparent truths of each person. The opening story of a former Playboy model who shares the heart-wrenching and devastating account of her own rape as a child grabs demands attention, pushing the reader through the book. What appears to be a casual jaunt through some very attractive photos immediately becomes much, much more. Followed by a story of a corporate lawyer whose body is covered entirely in tattoos and a paralyzed skier, the book commands attention and the layout of the book allows for browsing, as well as a more intensive study. The description of the book explains that the four women who compiled it realized their own
struggles with stereotypes and the difficulty of dropping preconceived notions. Finding the notion of expelling stereotypes and challenging readers to take a second look at life enthralled the four women. “We have tried our best to present slices of these individuals’ lives free of our beliefs and attitudes,” the introduction states. “We hope this book spurs readers to open their eyes to the possibility of those ‘what I thought I saw’ moments all around us.” The book also delves into gender identity, including a man who buys women’s clothes while traveling on business and a former candidate for the Utah Senate who transitioned from male to female. “For my whole life, I’ve been holding my breath, fighting the urge to give in to who I really am,” the book quotes Jessica, the former senate candidate. “How long can you hold your breath?” Truly a stunning work, the book will challenge not just how we view the world, but how we view ourselves.
The coffee-table companion is available online at thewhatithoughtisawbook.com and at King’s English Bookshop, 1511 S. 1500 East, Salt Lake City.
Thank you for being a friend. Facebook.com/ QSaltLake
MARCH 15, 2012
ARTS & ENTERTAINMENT
Logo moves away from gay programming By Seth Bracken
Scandalicious reimagines the classic countdown show with attitude featuring commentary from comedians, experts and tastemakers with strong opinions on topics that are frivolous, but addicting. You will not walk away any smarter from an episode, but you’ll definitely walk away thoroughly entertained.
Design my Dog From the producers of America’s Next Top Model, Design My Dog is a studio-based, reality-competition show that tests the creative talents of dog owners and their canine companions. Each week the show challenges four dog owners, each paired with a fashion designer, to create the latest looks in canine couture and compete to win a cash prize and a dog-calendar contract.
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Television’s most fabulous makeover show is back for a “draggier” than ever third season. Expect more drag queens, more diva transformations and more real-life fashion, hair and makeup tips for the everyday woman.
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RuPaul’s Drag U
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The word means excessive, morally shocking or extraordinary and unconventional. This series shines a spotlight on topics from serious to titillating that meet one or more of these criteria and have ignited a curiosity in pop culture. From topics like gay Republicans to Kim Kardashian’s wedding, Outrageous will bring viewers a revealing, uncompromising look at the most intriguing stories in pop culture.
Cryptogram: Now when people call me scum, I can just say: ‘But I was the nanny for the president of the United States!’
Anagram: young the giant
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Love Lockdown highlights a unique style of “no B.S.” relationship therapy — a 24hour intensive therapy session designed to make couples “blank” or get-off-thepot. The couples will enter therapy at a critical moment in their relationship and agree to follow the therapist’s hardcore advice for 24 hours.
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From DiGa’s Tony DiSanto and Liz Gateley, the veteran television producers and MTV executives behind such hits as Teen Mom, 16 and Pregnant and Made, comes a unique look at childbirth
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What family does not have their issues? For Michel Verdi, the issues are complicated. Her mafioso father was busted and sent to prison. She and her husband, Jay, moved to Los Angeles and opened three successful bars and restaurants along with Michel’s brother. Her mother remarried, her brother came out and then her ex-con father was released from jail. They are now under one roof and all working in the new family business.
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Six-year-old Eden Wood rocked the pageant world when she announced she would be retiring from the competition circuit after six grueling years of dominating her rivals. With over 300 crowns and a legion of adoring fans worldwide, Eden, her mom, her Midwest talent manager and her fabulous New York City publicist want to take her career to the next level. Eden is now pursuing her dreams to become an actress/singer/model/entertainment superstar, but the path to stardom is never easy, especially with so much at stake.
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and adoption. This new series chronicles the unique process of open adoption and the real ‘modern family’ that is formed. The program will feature all types of new parents including straight and gay couples, and single parents.
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eminiscent of the major program restructuring of MTV from music in the ’90s, Logo is phasing out gay programming. In fact, the next season’s lineup does not include a single show that has queer characters in leading roles. The station is opting instead for Bravo-like knockoffs of Toddlers & Tiaras and Mob Wives. Logo executives released a statement saying the shift was made to help the station reflect the modernization of the gay movement and provide entertainment that looks a little more mainstream. “Culturally, we’re past the tipping point. For gays and lesbians, it’s part of who they are, but they don’t lead with it, because many are leading fully integrated, mainstream lives,” said Lisa Sherman, executive vice president of Logo. “Our goal at Logo has always been to honestly reflect our viewers’ lives. We’re now reinforcing our commitment to them with programming that truly mirrors how many of them are living and want to be entertained today.” Logo executives site a new study the channel conducted that shows how lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender people live today. For example, the study shows that 53 percent conveyed that gays don’t hide being gay, but that for them it’s not a priority to showcase it. And 30 percent indicated that they preferred living and socializing in exclusively gay and lesbian communities. However, this study has not yet been released and no data about how the channel is used and viewed in Utah was released. “The gay community continues to evolve in size, influence and identity,” said Esther Franklin, a representative of the polling company. Along with endless reruns of Buffy the Vampire Slayer, Logo’s new season includes:
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30 ARTS & ENTERTAINMENT
44 Beat poet 47 One under Sgt. Across Matlovich 1 Ingrid’s Casablanca 48 Far out, when cruising role 49 Ben Hur novelist 5 Eva Gabor’s Green ___ Wallace 10 Balls 51 To date, but not to go 14 What an adjective out with modifies 53 Eligible for Soc. Sec. 15 Lorna of literature 54 River of Gay Paree 16 From the top 56 Restaurateur Toots 17 Actor interviewed in 57 Stuff in a closet Heat about “manscap- 59 Cold shoulder ing” 60 Track tipper 20 Hairy member of the 61 Actress MacDowell Addams family 62 The African Queen 21 The guy you’re seeing? author 22 The Crimson Tide’s st. 63 French I verb 23 Soft leather 64 Kind of question 25 Author whose poems 65 Cold War rival of the inspired Cats USA 27 “God loves everyDown body,” to Jane Spahr 1 Bring to trial 28 Puts stitches in 2 Cannot bear 29 Straight, in a bar 32 ‘N Sync member Lance 3 South Beach souvenir 4 Darth, as a boy 34 Glide on snow 5 Ike’s opponent 36 Cutting light 38 It kept 65-Across from 6 Woes of toes 7 Yellow-brick way shooting off missiles 41 Long of If These Walls 8 Come as far as 9 Groups that make a Could Talk 2 sound like lovemak42 Emcee’s opening ing? 43 McKellen of The Da Vince Code 10 Queer in Quebec
11 Disgruntled fan’s cry 12 Kitchen coating 13 Enjoys a good hard workout 18 Be a ham in “Hamlet”? 19 Yorkshire city 24 Domestic 26 Bitch role of ’50s television 30 Garment with a flared bottom 31 Reddish-orange fruit 32 Composer Leonard 33 Hit the decks 34 Album item 35 With 37-Down, movie in which 17-Across plays 43-Across 37 Fellows may receive them 39 See 35-Down 40 Wide-eyed ones 45 D.C. summer hrs. 46 U. degrees 47 Oh! Calcutta! group of actors? 50 Painter Max 52 Collectible illustrator 55 Hairy twin 57 One-night-stand partner, crudely 58 Keanu in The Matrix PUZZLE SOLUTIONS ARE ON PAGE 29
anagram An anagram is a word or phrase that can be made using the letters from another word or phrase. Rearrange the letters below to answer:
jacob tilley is a guitarist for which indie-rock band
eating hung toy
MARCH 15, 2012
she culture Return to the motherland
By Annalisa Millo
he following is a tale of two girls’ adventure in Portland, Ore. This story starts with my very young self when I lived in Seattle, initially establishing a love for the Pacific Northwest. For my girlfriend’s birthday, we decided to visit a new city to the both of us for a week, the City Of Roses: Portland. On our first night there, we set out in search of Mexican food at a popular spot in the eclectic Hawthorne district, ¿Por Qué No?, to find ourselves overwhelmed at the very minimal room to even stand, and instead headed across the street to another restaurant and tequila bar called Dingo’s. Apparently this was a matter of fate, as we were not the only lesbian couple there. Our bartender had fantastic style: fitted shirt, fitted pants, relaxed and unbuttoned cardigan, Macbeth kicks, complete with a shaven head that she sported very confidently and very well. One non-Utah margarita, a heavenly signature concoction with grapefruit juice, was enough for us to strike up a conversation with the bartender about other girl bars around. Our conversation went something like this: “Hey, could you give us the scoop on the girl bars in town? We’re not from here.” “I know.” “Huh?” “I haven’t seen you two around.” I thought, “Great, we’re on their radar already and we’ve only been in this city for a few hours.” I couldn’t decide whether that was a good thing or not. But she was helpful at listing which bars to visit on each day we were in town. Interestingly, I hear from out-of-towners about Salt Lake City’s more close-knit queer community than most cities, but an exchange like that leads me to reconsider, with more similarities than differences in comparison to other cities. The first few days we spent downtown, in the Hawthorne district and on 23rd Avenue, observing. There was absolutely more diversity in every way one could imagine, among both the queers and the non-queers. People seemed more open and comfortable about walking down the street holding hands with their partners than most are here in Salt Lake City. But then again, the overall vibe of Portland seemed much less quick to judge than in Utah. The queers “blended in” more in Portland than here in Utah. That was something I’d been considering plenty since our trip. While more shades of gray with the different characters occurred in Portland, there’s something to be said about the lack thereof in Utah. My theory is that because of the staunch opposition we face with mainstream culture in Utah, there are many, many more of us here who are not merely a shade of gray, but who stand out from the crowd, and intentionally. Maybe not so much while walking down the
street, but in our places of work and school and in our social groups, and I think there are more members of our queer community who act as activists in their daily lives by being out, and open, armed with well thought-out opinions on equality instead of taking a backseat, wallflower position and hesitating to speak up when the situation calls for it. Yet another reason to love my city. The Egyptian was the girl bar to not overlook, as everyone recommended prior to the trip. Upon arrival, we discovered that it had unfortunately closed its doors for good. When the weekend came we enlisted the help of our three fabulous local guides of the night, Bryan Swasey, Joel Schatzman, both originally from Utah, and Aldo Perez, who works at Crush, a chic wine bar and another gay hangout in Portland. We ran the night that Friday, our first stop at The Saucebox in downtown Portland, a swanky bar with a restaurant attached. It was ultra-contemporary. Very clean lines in the design, my kind of design bliss. Near the front entrance was a female disc jockey, lesbionic, it turned out. She was scheduled to DJ the next night at Blow Pony, one of the best queer dance nights in Portland. One of the more interesting and daring design features of The Saucebox was giant block Helvetica type across the 50-foot wall that stated, “HEAVYSUGAR,” no space, no punctuation, clean, white, bold letters on an earthy brown wall. The cocktail menu was lavish, the food menu was a very local/organic focused, adventurous, artisan creation, but the vibe was not something I’m often fond of. With one step into the place, there was a noticeable air of slightly pretentious energy — it wouldn’t have surprised me if somebody had mentioned that my socks totally clash with my outfit, or something similarly frivolous. From The Saucebox we abounded toward one of Portland’s oldest gay bars, C.C. Slaughters, and its attached Rainbow Room Lounge in Chinatown, northeast downtown Portland. From what experts were suggesting, C.C.’s was the queer club to visit in Portland. The Rainbow Room was the side of C.C.’s to have a seat, enjoy a signature martini and engage in good conversation in a posh environment: casual vibe, smiling staff and beautiful décor. The alternate side was C.C.’s club, supposedly the climax for our nightlife adventure in Portland. Put frankly, I was more impressed with the Rainbow Room. C.C.’s was fine, but not much more than that. It was like Club Sound had transplanted to Portland, but without familiar faces and with less enjoyable music — techno remixes of Top 40 songs, not the most fun to dance to. However, I did appreciate their coat check, which needs to happen at more bars and clubs in Utah. It was much smaller than Club Sound; if I had to guess, it was about a third or a fourth
the size. Even at that size, while the dance floor itself was packed, it seemed like a less than stunning turn out, as the surrounding areas of the club were relatively spacious, even on a weekend night at midnight. Nevertheless, the crowd seemed to be having a good time and we definitely enjoyed ourselves, but shortly after, we called it a night. We did our best to “keep Portland weird,”
and I came close to collapsing into a fish and chips coma during our stay. In the end, I decided that while there was no lack of things to enjoy in Portland that Salt Lake City doesn’t offer, the trip also served as a good reminder that there is also a lot to be proud of in our growing City of Salty Lakes. So keep it up Salt Lakers, you’ve made one columnist more than proud of her city this month! Q
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MARCH 15, 2012
By Seth Bracken
morphed into something much bigger. SaltyGossip’s reputation as a place to find out what is going on this weekend and what happened last weekend is often superseded by its (undeserved?) reputation as a bitch-fest and is considered by many as a destructive tool to the community. But founder Salty Gossip doesn’t see it that way. “There are a lot of sites like SaltyGossip that have come along, but they are even crueler than we are,” Salty Gossip said. “But I can sleep at night because I know I am trying my best and that I am trying to be a little more socially responsible than other sites. We also post a lot of really great information. We’ve got charity information, HIV-testing information, drug information, a lot of different resources.” “People come for the gossip, especially young people, and end up finding a lot of other information,” Salty Jesus added. The site has gone through many bloggers but the posts are somehow able to attract the young gay demographic. With photos and dirt-dishing and comments, the site is the time-absorber before starting a shift at work or while on a lunch break, Salty Jesus said. Although the site has only been in operation for a few years, it has changed drastically since its inception. “I can honestly say I realized that what I post can affect people. What you say and what other people say can affect them,” Salty Gossip said. “I never do anything to intentionally hurt people. But sometimes a single comment that we miss is posted and it can really hurt someone. We kind of realized we had to start to be really careful with what we said and what we posted.” SaltyGossip has always had the standard that when people ask to have their photo or
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Theme: A quote by the former transgender nanny to a young Barack Obama in the 1970s.
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the space and it was always packed.
SaltyGossip: The past, present and future of Salt Lake’s gossip queens rom twink-offs to club news and scathing commentaries on go-go dancers to local gay celebs and even a dash of charity work, there’s usually a love-hate relationship with SaltyGossip.com and its followers; either they love the site or love to hate it. SaltyGossip launched in 2009 and has been the undisputed “TMZ” of Utah’s gay scene, outlasting other gay blogs and socialite sites. Think Perez Hilton, with a Utah spin. Despite their undisputed reign of control over the gay club scene, the contributors behind the site, Salty Gossip and Salty Jesus, have managed to fly under the radar. Leading many other traditional media outlets with various stories, SaltyGossip is on the frontline of true guerilla warfare in gay blogging. Yet, no matter how many party photos they post, or how many club feuds they became embroiled in, the identities of Salty Gossip and Salty Jesus elude most Utah gays. However, in a rare, exclusive interview with QSaltLake, Salty Gossip and Salty Jesus shared tidbits to their true identities and backgrounds. From their reasons for starting the blog to their favorite drinks and bars, the bloggers dished all the dirt on themselves (except their real names). “A lot of people who want to know who we are, are able to find out,” Salty Gossip said. “Our friends know and the people that don’t like us know. It’s out there and some people know, but I don’t want to be a public figure. I have so much going on in my life, and I don’t want to make the site into a bigger deal than it already is.” The speculation behind the identities of the bloggers has turned the characters into almost mythological creatures, Salty Jesus said. Many of the readers don’t even want to know who is behind the blog posts, he said. The site, which started as a simple hobby for Salty Gossip has
‘___ _ ___ ___
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a mention about them removed from a post, even through a simple email, it is automatically removed, no matter the reason. However, even that policy is no consolation for one local junior high school math teacher. While he enjoys going to local clubs, bars and parties, the idea of being found out via the site is an honest concern. “I always make sure to check the blog after every weekend, just to make sure I’m not a featured item of the week,” the teacher, who preferred not to share his name, said. And while the removal policy is some solace for the teacher, the damage could still be done before he catches it or before the administrators of the site have time to remove it, he said. “When word started getting out about who we were, I started to see the affects it had on others,” said Salty Jesus. “I remember one post where we mentioned someone and drugs and I later found out he was being drug tested at work. I could see how something I posted will actually impact others.” While no benchmarks have been established the tone of the site has morphed to be more socially conscientious, Salty Gossip said. The life-blood of the site, gossip and photos, is still posted, but charity events, concerts and other information are also featured and readers will most likely laugh more and gasp less than they used to. “I know that we’ve done some things in the past that we’re not all that particularly proud of. But we’ve grown a lot and we’re going to keep growing,” Salty Gossip said. “I love the gay community. I am an open book. Anyone can talk to me. I am nicer in life than I am on the website. I really do have a heart of gold and I’d love to help anyone that needs a friend to talk with.” “We realize what we post will impact others and that can be in a positive or negative way. But we’re not malicious, we’re not trying to hurt, we’re trying to make some laughs and we are such a different blog than when we first started,” Salty Jesus said. “We’re the unofficial voice of the gay community because we don’t have to be as careful about what we say. Because this website is a hobby for us, we’re not brought down by financial or social reasons.” To help provide background on the true identities of the queens of Salt Lake gossip, QSaltLake posed some questions about some of the standings of Salty Gossip and Salty Jesus. QSaltLake: What’s your favorite bar or club that has ever been opened in Utah? Salty Gossip: PÜRE, in its early days, because it was the only 18-and-older venue and it was where everyone met everyone else. Salty Jesus: Babylon, in its early days. I loved
Who is your favorite Salt Lake City drag queen? SG: Nova Starr: She is fierce and knows how to entertain. SJ: Vega Starr Who are your favorite club promoters in Salt Lake City? SG: Paul Sanchez SJ: Rob and Tim What’s your go-to drink? SG: Gin and tonic SJ: Raspberry Long Island How many times a week do you go out to the bars and clubs? SG: Just once or twice. SJ: Once a week — usually to Fusion. Lady Gaga or Madonna? SG: Lady Gaga SJ: Lady Gaga Favorite local DJ? SG: Craig Robin SJ: DJ Lishus: He’s new but he’s so damn sexy. What are your favorite places to visit for food and recreation in Salt Lake? SG: I love the Thai Lotus, Bombay House, Café Trang. I love hiking around in the hills during the summer. Oh, and I eat Chipotle like every day. SJ: I know it’s so cliché, but I love the Coffee Garden. Where do you shop for clothes? SG: Best Deal, Fashion Place Mall, Abercrombie and Fitch, Zumiez and Nordstrom. SJ: Nordstrom and Buckle. Your favorite gay movie? SG: I am so glad you asked this question! My favorite gay movie is definitely Ma Vie En Rose — it’s a foreign film. SJ: The Birdcage Your guilty pleasure music? SG: I wouldn’t tell anyone this, but my guilty pleasure is definitely Paris Hilton. SJ: Kelly Osbourne — I have her albums and I’ll plug it in all the time, “shut up, when I’m talking to you!” Chinese or Italian? SG: Oh are you kidding me? Chinese. SJ: Thai Favorite Mexican restaurant? SG: Frida Bistro SJ: Garcia’s, in Layton. Who’s on your iPod right now? SG: House and trans; Tiesto, Skrillex, Stevie Aoki and Armin Van Buruen. SJ: Mine is a bit more eclectic. I’ve been obsessed with Rene Fleming, Paul Van Dyk, Cascade and the soundtrack to Chitty Chitty Bang Bang. If you could change one thing about Utah’s club scene, what would it be? SG: I wish there was a bigger venue with more sophistication. We need a bigger, classy venue. I want to see the nightlife expand. SJ: I’d love to see a nice club east of State Street. Q
MARCH 15, 2012
cocktail chatter The Salty Dog
By Ed Sikov
t was with a toxic mix of boredom, curiosity, invigoration and the pathetic devilishness particular to the elderly that I called Kyle and asked him what he was doing Friday night. “The usual,” he said, as though I’d stalked him and knew his routine. (OK, there was a brief period when I had stalked him, but let’s put that aside.) “What’s that?” I asked. “Get home around 7, shower, change, meet Robbie for drinks and dinner, and then see what develops. Wanna join us?” In more ways than one, I thought lecherously, but answered, “Sure.” Dan was in Duluth — in February! — at an Alzheimer’s conference. “Don’t forget to come home!” I cried after he shut the door on the way out, knowing he wouldn’t deign to unlock the door to reprimand me for my bad taste. I was in the mood to hang out with youth because I’d picked up a copy of GQ and was shocked to find that I’d heard of none of the people whose handsome faces and superb bodies graced its pages; I knew nothing of the products being touted and advertised; and the recommended hot spots in New York City were as foreign to me as the best places to get grilled yak in Ulan Bator. Where once were my favorite blocks of sleazy sex clubs now stand the showrooms of Stella McCartney and Alexander McQueen. (That particular neighborhood’s name, the Meatpacking District, has remained relevant, however. First it was Manhattan’s slaughterhouse neighborhood, then a place where men inserted themselves into other men, and now it’s where oversized rich women go to squeeze into clothes one size too small.) Kyle told me to meet him at Naval, a relatively new bar in the far west Hell’s Kitchen. I remembered the block as a wasteland of bus parking lots; now it’s ablaze with soaring rental apartment buildings, thriving restaurants and showy bars, including Naval, with its double theme of
sailors and treasure trails, all depicted in giant close-up murals on the walls. By the time Robbie got there it was almost 9 p.m. — I was yawning. “Here,” said Kyle. “Drink this.” He handed me something he’d gotten from the bartender. I looked at the can. “What’s a Blue Ox?” “It’s an energy drink,” Robbie shouted. I took a mouthful and, because it tasted like artificially-sweetened crankcase oil pretending to be cola, promptly spat it out on the floor, much to the consternation of the idiot next to me who was wearing shorts and flip flops on a frigid February night and ended up with spat-out Blue Ox all over his shins and feet. “Asshole!” he squealed. I tend to get belligerent when I’m not drunk, so I shoved his shoulders back with both hands and said, “No, you’re the asshole for dressing like you’re in Barbados when in fact you’re in New Friggin’ York in February. Now go poof or I’ll beat the crap out of you, you asinine little twink.” He spun around and ran away. Kyle and Robbie stood in silent amazement for a moment then broke into applause. “Butch!” said Kyle admiringly. “Take me home, Daddy,” Robbie mewed. “Just buy me a drink,” I replied. “A real one. How about a Salty Dog? You think Louise here knows how to make one?” He didn’t. I instructed him. Commanded is a better word.
He wouldn’t deign to unlock the door to reprimand me for my bad taste
The Salty Dog 3 oz. grapefruit juice 3 oz. Absolut vodka Cut lemon Salt Ice, cubed or crushed Rub the cut edge of the lemon on the rim of a glass, then dip the glass in flaked salt. Put ice in the glass, add the juice and vodka and stir gently, so as not to disturb the salt on the rim. If the drink is too strong for you, cut it back with more grapefruit juice. Q
G E T YO U R V I Q C A R D AT
FOOD & DRINK
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Q2012 salt lake
Vote for Utah’s most fabulous People, Places and Things! Fill out at least 10 categories of the most fabulous local restaurants, bars, services and others to qualify your ballot.
Most Fabulous Bars
Best Gay Bar
Best Leader of a Queer Organization
������������������������������������������������ Best Straight Bar
������������������������������������������������ Best Local Politician
������������������������������������������������ Best Karaoke ������������������������������������������������ Best Place to Catch the Game ������������������������������������������������ Best Dance Club ������������������������������������������������ Best Afternoon Crowd ������������������������������������������������ Best Micro-Brewery ������������������������������������������������ Best Friday Night
������������������������������������������������ Cheapest Drinks
Lightest on Your Wallet
������������������������������������������������ Best Sandwich
������������������������������������������������ Best Weekly Bar Event
������������������������������������������������ Best Pizza
������������������������������������������������ Best Monthly Bar Event
������������������������������������������������ Best Pastries
������������������������������������������������ Best Contemporary Restaurant ������������������������������������������������ Best in Park City
������������������������������������������������ Best Salads
������������������������������������������������ Best in Ogden
������������������������������������������������ Best Sushi
������������������������������������������������ Best Asian Cuisine
������������������������������������������������ Best Sunday Brunch
������������������������������������������������ Best Thai Cuisine ������������������������������������������������ Best South of the Border Cuisine ������������������������������������������������ Best Mediterranean Cuisine ������������������������������������������������ Best Sushi ������������������������������������������������ Best Steak House ������������������������������������������������ Best Local Coffee House ������������������������������������������������ Best Wine and Beer Selection ������������������������������������������������
Most Fabulous Shopping Best Local Shop for Budget Fashion
������������������������������������������������ Best Local Shop for Shoes
������������������������������������������������ Best Martini
������������������������������������������������ Best Seafood Selection
������������������������������������������������ Best Sunday Night
������������������������������������������������ Best PETA-Approved
������������������������������������������������ Best Local DJ
������������������������������������������������ Best Local Shop for High-End Fashion
Most Fabulous Food
������������������������������������������������ Best Local Restaurant for Breakfast
������������������������������������������������ Best Bartender
������������������������������������������������ Best Saturday Night
Most Fabulous Restaurants ������������������������������������������������ Best After-Hours Cravings
������������������������������������������������ Best Local Actor or Actress
Most Fabulous Services Best Gym ������������������������������������������������ Best Ski Resort ������������������������������������������������ Best Hair Salon ������������������������������������������������ Best to get Waxed
������������������������������������������������ Best Local Shop for Drag Attire ������������������������������������������������ Best Local Book Store ������������������������������������������������ Best Consignment Store for Furniture/Home Décor ������������������������������������������������ Best Underwear Selection ������������������������������������������������ Best Antique Store ������������������������������������������������ Best Flower Shop ������������������������������������������������ Best Local Jewelry Store ������������������������������������������������ Best Gift Store
������������������������������������������������ Best Tattoo/Piercing Parlor
������������������������������������������������ Best Adult Toy Store
Best Local Theatre Company
������������������������������������������������ Best Counseling Service
������������������������������������������������ Best Art Gallery or Museum
������������������������������������������������ Best Pet Groomer
������������������������������������������������ Best Local Visual Artist
������������������������������������������������ Best Real Estate Agent
������������������������������������������������ Best Local Play or Musical of 2011
������������������������������������������������ Best Massage
������������������������������������������������ Best Local Dance Company
������������������������������������������������ Best Attorney
Most Fabulous Art
������������������������������������������������ Best Local Musician/Band ������������������������������������������������
DID YOU VOTE FOR AT LEAST 10? ONE VOTE PER PERSON. FLOODING IS EASY TO SEE, SO DON’T DO IT AS IT WILL DISQUALIFY WHO YOU ARE VOTING FOR.
������������������������������������������������ Best Hotel ������������������������������������������������ Best Photographer/Studio
Fabulous Groups Best Social Group ������������������������������������������������ Best Political Group ������������������������������������������������ Best Health/Resources Group ������������������������������������������������ Best Religious Organization ������������������������������������������������ Best Sports Organization ������������������������������������������������
Other Best Radio Station
Best QSaltLake Columnist
������������������������������������������������ Best QSaltLake Story of the Year
������������������������������������������������ Best Local Radio Personality
������������������������������������������������ Best QSaltLake Event of 2011
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MARCH 15, 2012
FOOD & DRINK
restaurant review Cucina Vanina adds old-world Italian charm to Cottonwood
March 22-24, 2012 | 7:30 pm Saturday Matinee 2:00 pm
By Chef Drew Ellsworth
anina Meystre Pirollo is owner and chef of Cucina Vanina in the Cottonwood Heights area of Salt Lake City. If you’ve ever gone to the Cottonwood Wine Store near the intersection of of beef and a thin slice of proscuitto and wraps Highland Drive and Ft. Union Boulevard, Cucina them around a filling of mozarella. She serve Vanina is across the street. this with a side salad and oven roasted potato There are not a lot of frills; the restaurant is wedges — it was very unique and truly like a housed at the end of a strip mall and is airy and trip to Italy — my only comment would be that I open with mixed blond furnishings and a large would have loved some marinara sauce drizzled counter. I went on a Wednesday night and there over the roll-ups, since they were a little dry, but was a nice, casual crowd and I was met, grathat probably would be authentic! ciously by Vanina herself. This eating establishBefore going to Cucina Vanina I stopped in to ment revolves around the soul of her small and see my old digs, the newly remodeled wine store sparkling figure. Her eyes twinkle and flash as she in Cottonwood Heights. I bought a bottle of a talks to you about the food and about Spanish Rosé made from tempranillo Napoli where she grew up. Vanina Cucina Vanina grapes. It had a beautiful, rich color came to Utah because her husband Deli & Café and a very full body for a rosé but I is a scientist at the University of Utah, 1844 Fort Union Blvd thought it had an odd sweetness in and you can tell she’s one of those M–F 11a–2p, 5:30–9p the finish and that tanic “bite” that restaurateurs who is in it for the fun Sat 11a–2p, 5:30–9:30p I often get from tempranillo. Vanina and for the love of Italian cuisine. (It’s 801-938-9706 tasted the wine and said she quite really the only way to make it in that cucinavanina.com liked it. business — if you do it to become rich Drew’s Score: 91 For dessert Vanina brought me a — it’s like show business — you have sampler plate of a rich and gooey about a thousand-to-one shot of really making it!) chocolate panna cotta which is set in a small Vanina has a tall, young waiter who shares her amount of gelatin. The plate was painted with enthusiasm and spends a lot of time with each cream and chocolate syrup and there was also customer. These aspects of customer service are a sliver of her house-made tiramisu. The panna what make a visit to Cucina Vanina memorable, cotta was sprinkled with a thinly sliced chocolate and I really enjoyed myself. Let me tell you about cookie made from animal cracker crumbs and the food. chocolate chips — they were beautiful and also As a starter, Vanina brought out a small, an authentic recipe from the chef’s childhood. sectioned platter that had imported olive oil in If you haven’t been to Cucina Vanina, you one section, very delicious Balsamic vinegar in need to go, if for only one reason, to meet the another and a sort of Italian relish in another. chef. She possesses that indefinable, European The relish had an eggplant-ratatouille quality to charm that so captivates Americans. The food is it, and this came with a very generous basket of excellent and the prices, very affordable. I rate warm, soft focaccia bread. The bread was houseCucina Vanina a well-deserved 91 points. Q made, dusted with flour and very delicious. Soon thereafter, the good-looking chef appeared again with a delicious salad surrounded by a thinly sliced Italian meat called Brescala. The meat was tasty and crisp and the rocket greens were dressed with Meyer lemon vinaigrette and ample slices of Romano cheese. My next course was a Napolitan pasta al frutti di mare — or Try our wild coconut, curried wild rice seafood pasta. It was very beautiful, tasty and authentic. Large chunks of succulent salmon, big prawns, spaghetti, sauteed tomatoes and capres were all flanked by freshly cooked mussels — this was my favorite dish of the night. I also tried a small plate of bow tie pasta with thin slices of salmon in a creamy saffron sauce topped with chopped herbs. Then Vanina said she was making a special dish from her home 2148 Highland Drive town which I was more that delighted to try. This dish reminded me of the German Rolladen or the www.omarsrawtopia.com French Paupiettes. Vanina takes very thin slices
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MARCH 15, 2012
You’ll go far, Leo! by Jack Fertig
Pluto in Capricorn, Mars in Virgo and Venus conjoining Jupiter in Taurus are making a “grand trine,” offering vast creative power and the ability to make deep changes or just wallow in your comfort zone and indulge in wild hedonistic pleasures. With careful planning you could do both.
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take on hard work and challenge is your strong suit. Work in some modesty and you’ll go far!
VIRGO (August 23–September 22) Erotic explorations may have less than thrilling results but most experiments offer the benefit of experience if not perceptible success. The next few weeks are for rethinking your relationships, but beware of hasty changes.
LIBRA (September 23–October 22) Easy answers to spiritual questions shouldn’t be trusted. It’s too easy to fall into dogmas, especially if they reflect or react against family teachings. Keep digging to see where and how those feelings got so deeply entrenched.
SCORPIO (October 23–November 21) Smoothing out arguments with friends does not mean putting them under a pavement! Be mature enough to keep principals above interpersonal tiffs and your own bruised ego… er… feelings. Being nice might be work, but it will pay off.
ARIES (March 20–April 19) Take a critical look at your work habits and start a process of making revisions; be helpful to others, but remember to get your own work done first. Reconsider your long-range goals. A radical shift may offer better, more lucrative opportunities TAURUS (April 20–May 20) If you can act free of resentment, fear and anger you can do almost anything and the big risks will pay off for you. If those three problems are in the way, challenge yourself to understand why and to let go.
GEMINI (May 21–June 20) Your brain is going on strike so rely instead on your heart. Take time out to connect with the people you love, and especially with yourself. An adult is someone who takes responsibility and has stopped blaming his or her parents.
CANCER (June 21–July 22) You can’t un-say what’s been said, but apologies and some critical reflection can do wonders for your relationships, personal and social. You don’t need to beat yourself up. We all have room for improvement.
LEO (July 23–August 22) Being super sexy is a distraction from more durable opportunities. Redirect your irresistible seductive charms to making important career connections. Your willingness to
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SAGITTARIUS (November 22–Dec 20) Beating the boss in a battle could cost you the war. With a little self-effacing modesty and a lot of hard work you could win him or her over and gain a powerful ally.
CAPRICORN (December 21–January 19) It feels like you can barely keep up with the treadmill, but you got the power! Still, what to do with it? Your best clue Ask your 9-year-old self what you really want to be when you grow up.
AQUARIUS (January 20–February 18) Bureaucratic snafus can get expensive. Make sure your papers are in order! A bad case of foot-in-mouth is headed your way. Not only is quiet mediation a safe retreat, but it should offer profound, transformative insights.
PISCES (February 19–March 19) No relationship is perfect and it’s too easy to find fault. Being or finding a partner is all about trying to be a better person. When discussing problems be gentle on yourself and your darling.
Jack Fertig, a professional astrologer since 1977, is available in person, at 415-864-8302, starjack.com and QScopes@qsaltlake.com.
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MARCH 15, 2012
38 ARTS & ENTERTAINMENT
the dating diet Williams So-no-oh-oh-ma by Anthony Paull
y friend Josh has a dilemma. Single for two years, he’s graduated to making love to kitchen utensils. It won’t do anymore. It’s Black Friday. His love is on clearance, but there are no buyers and he won’t settle. Sex with closet cases who hate flamboyant gay men isn’t enough. He wants a nice guy who won’t be embarrassed to be seen with him at the grocery store. “Then go stand in the organic fruit aisle and cry vegan,” I say. “You’ll have a man in no time.” “It’s no joke,” he states. “I hate waking up without a boyfriend. You know, my ex, the woodpecker. His penis was my alarm clock. His drill, the promise of a new day.” I roll my eyes. “Can you be more dramatic?” “It’s true.” Frowning, he kicks at the floor. “How am I supposed to find someone? Where do I meet new people? I’m done with searching for a man on a phone app.” “What’s the problem?” I ask. “You have a referral source. What about getting set up by a friend?”
“Good idea,” he replies. “Can you? Please. Please. Please.” “No.” “Why?” I recall a drunk text, in which Josh confessed to having an intimate experience with a spatula. I’m not sure what he did but he had a hard time wiping his ass that week. All he’d say is that his bad behavior would make a rolling pin blush. “I know too much about your kitchen tools,” I explain. “That was one night,” he defends. “One lonely night.” “You wouldn’t like my friends,” I state. “They’re too superficial for you. You want a traditional guy.” His lips curl with the thought. “Right. A traditional guy.” The next day he takes to his cell phone, making the rounds. He calls seven of his friends but no one is willing to hook him up. They all make excuses, stating their friends are coupled or too critical. Only one friend, Seth, is able to provide a lead. “His name is Rudy,” Seth says. “But you have to go slow.
He was just in a relationship. He’s sensitive. Don’t try sleeping with him. He’s better than that.” Josh agrees, leaping at the chance to meet a guy who wants more than sex. The good news: the date is a success, filled with academic conversation, romance, and hints of intrigue. The bad news: Rudy reveals that he used to date Seth, and Seth has a jealous streak. You see, even though Seth introduced the two, he isn’t willing to give up what he had. Is that common for gay men? Are we territorial even if we have no rights? For Seth, it makes no difference that he’s merely Rudy’s friend; he still owns the property. Rudy is on lease. So what if he wants to join Josh and Rudy on dates? Between boyfriends, Seth doesn’t like being alone. “Dude, you can’t come out with us every night,” Josh tells him. “Why not?” Seth asks. “I saw him first.” “Huh?” “I introduced you to Rudy. Remember?” “Yeah, and we’re dating now. So we need space to get to know each other.” Seth smiles in agreement but doesn’t take to the idea well. This new relationship is cutting into his ‘friend’ time. So he begins texting Rudy to win him back. Soon, the texts take a sexual turn, entering the realm of ‘what if.’ Do
you think we still have something? I miss you in my arms. But Seth doesn’t want Rudy. He just wants to know Rudy’s there. On his birthday, Josh breaks it off when Rudy delays their plans to spend a day at the beach with Seth. “So much for meeting a man through friends,” Josh says, calling me. “I’m back to ground zero.” “Hey, you took a chance,” I later say, cheering him up over dinner. “There are a lot of guys out there.” “Yeah, but they have friends. So even if they’re single, they’re not really single.” I wonder if he’s right, if we’ve become a society without boundaries, traveling in packs in fear of being of alone. Friends or lovers, it seems we may have lost touch with the notion of deleting someone, feeling guilty for it. Even if the ex-flame, the ex-friend, is no longer in your life, they’re still looming on Facebook, waiting, watching. I like to think I’m not like that, that I draw a clear, visible line when in it comes to friendship. So we eat dinner and I give Josh time to spend alone. As a friend, I know he’ll need it to go shopping. For his birthday, I got him a Williams Sonoma gift card. Friend or not, I have no intention of asking what he buys with it. Q
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MARCH 15, 2012
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