Issue 384

Fur Flee Weekend Reprises in Twin Ports

Great numbers of hirsute and ursine men in the Upper Midwest will be coming out of hibernation for Fur Flee 2010: Bears & Cubs Excellent Adventure, March 4-7, in the Twin Ports of Duluth, Minnesota, and Superior, Wisconsin, a scenic two-hour drive from the Twin Cities. This year, the event has a new host hotel: Barkers Island Inn Resort in Superior. Read the rest of this entry »

Queer As Folks

New Ecofriendly Gift Store Opens in Midtown Global Market

Midtown Global Market is welcoming its newest store, EarthVitality. It sells green products and clothing that reflect the establishment’s commitment to social, economic, and environmental sustainability. Everything sold must meet one or more of strict criteria: made from recycled, biodegradable, organic, and sustainable materials such as cotton, bamboo, or hemp; powered by “green” energy such as solar; and fair-trade, locally, or small-scale produced. The store will offer customers the option of custom embroidery and printing on the merchandise. Midtown Global Market, 920 East Lake Street, Minneapolis, is an internationally themed public market with groceries, food, and unique gifts. Read the rest of this entry »

The Worst Gigolo Ever

Most of my columns are packed with lies, but the story I’m about to tell is absolutely true. Especially the part about me being much more fetching then my friends.

I was sitting poolside at a Las Vegas hotel with my two best friends and my lady friend. We were fully dressed. Well, let me qualify that. Some of us were wearing bathing suits but we had wisely covered up with those clever, flowing pool pajamas that some nice gay boy designer created to disguise middle-aged sag. Read the rest of this entry »

A(nother) Modest Proposal

I hereby propose that an award, analogous to the prestigious Darwin Awards, be created uniquely for egregious politicians. The Darwins, you may remember, are presented annually (usually posthumously) to individuals who have annihilated themselves through acts of monumental stupidity. Read the rest of this entry »

Isn’t Fashion Fun

The final weeks… keeping your fashion sanity when winter gets you down.

The wardrobe experts™ of styledlook® get it. We are all tired of our coats, scarves, and thermal underwear too.

But the calendar still has a ways to go before we get to show off our new spring looks. Read the rest of this entry »

Big Gay News

National News

Obama Renews Vow To Repeal Military Ban on Gays
During his State of the Union Address on January 27, President Barack Obama vowed to work with Congress this year to repeal the nation’s ban on openly gay service members. The pledge is a reiteration of his campaign promise to overturn the ban. Obama said, “This year, I will work with Congress and our military to finally repeal the law that denies gay Americans the right to serve the country they love because of who they are.” He last mentioned his promise during a speech at the Human Rights Campaign National Dinner on October 10. Recent polls suggest that most Americans support repealing the ban.

Report Claims Increase of Gays in Military
A new report estimates that 66,000 gay, lesbian, and bisexual people currently are serving in the US military. It was compiled and published by the Williams Institute, a public policy institute at the UCLA School of Law that studies sexual orientation law. The figure represents a slight increase in the numbers previously reported. The authors used a variety of statistical methods to arrive at the estimate, relying on data from the 2000 Census and the Census Bureau’s 2008 American Community Survey.


World News

British Attitudes More Liberal on Homosexuality
The latest British Social Attitudes survey, conducted in 2008, shows that public attitudes toward gays and lesbians have become more liberal since the survey first was conducted in 1983. According to the 2008 survey, 36 percent thought same-sex relationships were “always” or “mostly wrong,” compared with 62 percent in 1983. The survey measures a variety of attitudes toward social issues, including sexuality, drug use, and political affiliation.
Moscow Mayor Calls Gay Pride March “Satanic”
Moscow Mayor Yuri Luzhkov again called the city’s planned Gay Pride Parade “satanic.” He first referred to the Pride Parade as satanic in 2007. Luzhkov said recently, “A gay parade cannot be called anything but a satanic act.” Organizer Nikolai Alexeyev confirmed plans to hold a parade on May 29. He insisted that a ban would not prevent it from being held. Last year’s parade ended in the public arrests of Alexeyev and others in front of international journalists.

Overturn of Mexico City Gay Marriage Law sought
According to The Washington Post, Mexican federal prosecutors are seeking to overturn Mexico City’s recently passed same-sex marriage legislation. The Attorney General’s Office said in a statement that the law “violates the principle of legality, because it strays from the constitutional principle of protecting the family.” It has filed an appeal to Mexico’s Supreme Court, asking it to void the legislation.

On the Townsend

Filmmakers in Conversation: Ellen Kuras / Feb. 17-20 / Walker Art Center, 1750 Hennepin Ave., Mpls. / (612) 375-7600 / www.walkerart.org

The Walker’s Expanding The Frame: Journeys series continues with cinematographer/filmmaker Ellen Kuras, one of queer cinema’s true luminaries. You can adore her beguiling black-and-white camera work in Swoon, director Tom Kalin’s stunning film about gay kidnappers/child murderers Leopold and Loeb. Admire her gritty realistic color work in another true crime story, I Shot Andy Warhol, directed by Mary Harron, an inquiry into the mind of lesbian Valerie Solanas (Lilli Taylor). In Julian Schnabel’s Lou Reed concert film Berlin, Kuras’s gritty sensibility also shines through. A major Kuras highlight is The Betrayal, the Oscar-nominated 2008 documentary she codirected with Thavisouk Phrasavathan, an intimate look into the covert US war in Laos. The great woman herself will be interviewed live at the Walker during An Evening with Ellen Kuras. See you there!

Drama A Comedy Or: Apocalypse Tuesday / Through Feb. 21 / Sabes Jewish Community Center, 4330 Cedar Lake Rd., St. Louis Park / (612) 396-2025 / www.urbansamurai.org

In his latest, Aaron Christopher, local playwriting’s King of Mean, looks into, as he puts it, “a destructive mental cycle I like to call spiraling. We fixate on one issue, or a possible issue, and then, we expand our worries into worse and worse scenarios fed by fear and informed by ignorance until we’re incapable of functioning as rational people. For instance, say your partner is late coming home, and you can’t get a hold of them, so you start to worry that maybe they ran out of gas, their phone is dead, and they’re stranded. Then, ‘What if they got carjacked?’ And then, ‘What if they got in an accident?’; ‘What if they’ve been kidnapped by some crazed serial killer’; ‘What if they’re cheating on me?’ So, you sit there, letting your mind’s gears grind on themselves until you are almost hysterical. And then, your partner comes in the door, and you explode at them.”

Christopher’s new farce portrays a range of possible horrific scenarios: being asphyxiated from a gas leak; being robbed, raped, killed by illegal immigrants; and being assaulted by international terrorists—perfectly suitable for our current culture of fear.

The Homecoming / Through Feb. 21 / Gremlin Theatre, 2400 University Ave. W., St. Paul / (651) 228-7008 / www.gremlin-theatre.org / Mojo / Through Feb. 27 / Red Eye Theatre, 15 W. 14th St., Mpls. / (612) 375-0300 / www.walkingshadowcompany.org

The ghost of Nobel Laureate Harold Pinter is hovering around the Cities this winter. Gremlin is reviving his 1967 Best Play Tony-winner The Homecoming in St. Paul. Director Matt Sciple’s ensemble delves into power struggles involving five men related to one another and one of their wives. Sticky sexual tension galore.

In Minneapolis, catch Walking Shadow’s Mojo, the play that won the 1996 Olivier—UK’s equivalent of the Tony—for Best New Comedy. It penetrates London’s 1958 rock ’n’ roll scene.

Playwright Jez Butterworth has shared that Pinter had “a ginormous influence on me.”

Just because five men but no women inhabit this play doesn’t mean a lack of comparable tension, as director Amy Rummenie notes: “There is a fair amount of speculation about the motives and sexuality of each other—usually using the questioning of sexual motives as a way to get a dig in at someone. It’s full of the posturing and preening of these young guys thrown against the frustration of being cooped up with each other. Their camaraderie breaks down, and a lot of ugly truths come floating to the surface.”


Expecting Isabel / Through Feb. 28 / Lowry Lab Theater, 350 St. Peter St., St. Paul / (612) 721-1186 / www.theatreunbound.com

Infertility is the subject of Lisa Loomer’s acclaimed comedy. Christine Winkler Johnson and Eric Knutson play Miranda and Nick, a hetero couple not getting any younger, and feeling frustrated in their efforts to reproduce.

Director Rebecca Rizzio says the play reveals cynical Miranda’s “discovery of the capacity that she has within herself to truly love a child. Loomer forces us to ask the question: How far do we push science to have our own biological children? And, can we not love the same way a child that is not of our bodies?”

Of course, that’s a question many gay and lesbian couples also are wrestling with nowadays. Loomer, being in sync with the times, includes a gay couple——portrayed by David Schlosser and Dwight Gunderson —in the play’s “adoption support group.”

Theatre Unbound, a first-rate feminist theater now in its 10th season, is known for its comic flair. Knutson tied with the late great Charles Nolte for this column’s Best Actor 2008.

On the Record

Animal
Ke$ha

The first thing you hear on this album is Ke$ha singing the opening lines of “Your Love is My Drug” with completely untreated vocals. It’s such a rarity these days on a pop record that I was stopped in my tracks. Perhaps here was a vocalist with enough confidence in her own skills really to let us hear them. Alas, the electronic effects kicked in during the chorus, then with annoying regularity throughout Animal. It’s all a shame, as the singer actually could bring the vocal goods if she just gave herself the chance. Otherwise, the album is pretty much pop-by-the-numbers, mixing songs with humping beats (first hit single “Tik Tok”) and ballads quickly exploding with epic sweep perfect for slow dancing at the junior prom. Signs of some real life (“Party at Some Rich Kid’s House”) are here, but for the most part, this is—frighteningly enough—Lady Gaga light. Read the rest of this entry »

Universal Windows Direct

Most homeowners wait until spring to begin their next home improvement project. While the hesitation to remodel when temperatures are below freezing makes perfect sense, it ultimately may not be the best decision. The problem is simple economics: Everyone else in the Twin Cities wants their windows, doors, or siding replaced in the spring and summer as well, so prices go up. Moreover, start that project in the peak of the busy season, and depending on which company you work with, you may not rate very high on its priority list. Read the rest of this entry »

Dixie’s Tupperware Party

Dixie’s Tupperware Party, which has been taking the nation by storm, was nominated for the coveted Drama Desk Award for Outstanding Solo Performance. How many drag turns can lay claim to that? When you catch Dixie Longate (get the clever phallic play on words?) at Hennepin Stages, you can purchase some of her plastic wares from her Tupper Fairies. Though Kris Andersson is the man beneath the wig, he channels Dixie when interviewed. This one-woman tour-de-force who played Off-Broadway not only is on a hit North American tour, but also has broken records for tupperware sales. Read the rest of this entry »

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