Paperwork can be the bane of any job. For Rev. Amy Delong a simple annual report catapulted her into the maelstrom of the United Methodist Church’s debate on accepting LGBT people. DeLong visits Houston’s Bering Memorial United Methodist Church (1440 Harold) on Sunday, Feb. 12 to preach at both the 8:30 and 10:50 service.
In 2009 DeLong was approached by two women who wanted to get married. After conducting premarital counseling with the couple Delong agreed to perform the ceremony. As a clergy person, DeLong was required to report on her activities at the end of the year, including any weddings she had performed. She knew that the Methodist Church did not allow same-sex marriage but thought “I don’t know if anybody even reads these.” Boy, was she wrong!
With-in three days she was hauled into the her boss’s (the bishop) office. DeLong’s relationship with her partner Val was well known to her colleagues. “I’ve never had a bishop or a leader in the church or a pastor who didn’t know that I was gay,” says DeLong. “Everyone knows Val.” But the church was determined now to make an example of her, and DeLon’s relationship would now be an issue.
In 2011 DeLong was tried in the church’s court with violating the Methodist “Book of Discipline” by being in a same-sex relationship and by performing a same-sex wedding. During the trial she refused to answer pointed questions about her and her partner’s sex life. “No heterosexual couples are ever asked if they
still engage in genital contact in their marriages,” says DeLong. That refusal left the court with no evidence against her on the first charge.
She was convicted of performing the wedding and suspended from ministry for 20 days. The court also required DeLong to work with a group of ministers to prepare a statement on how to “help resolve issues that harm the clergy covenant, create an advesarial spirit or lead to future trails.” “This sentence is complicated,” says DeLong. “It doesn’t lend itself well to media soundbites. So a lot of folks have been saying to me ‘I can’t tell, is this penalty good?’” DeLong responds with a resounding “Yes!” Saying that she welcomes the opportunity to write, teach and study on a topic dear to her heart.
DeLong recalls that during that initial meeting in the bishop’s office one of the bishop’s assistants referred to her as a “self-avowed practicing homosexual.” To which she responded “Val and I aren’t practicing any more… we are pretty good at it by now.” The assistant laughed. More than anything that is the impression one gets of DeLong: someone with a lot of humor and aplomb who is unwilling to back down from a fight for justice.
After the jump watch a clip of DeLong talking about her experience.
With a sense of humor so dry, you want to offer her a glass of water, out comedian Tig Notaro knows exactly what to say and how to say it to get a laugh. On her new and aptly named debut comedy disc Good One (Secretly Canadian), she touches on a variety of topics, ranging from Chastity Bono and Taylor Dayne to artificial insemination and babies taking showers.
Meredith Baxter turns 64 on Tuesday. For most of the ’80s, Baxter played Elyse Keaton on Family Ties. She’s mostly been seen in TV films and guest-starring roles. In an interview with Matt Lauer on Today back in 2009, she came out of the closet as lesbian. Her memoir Untied was released this past March.
For the next few months we get a taste of the Uranus-Pluto square that will dominate the next five years. Recent political turmoil has just been the set-up for major crises and changes ahead. Astrologically it looks a lot like 1848, 1939 and the ‘60s. Buckle your seatbelts; it’s gonna get bumpy.
GEMINI May 21-Jun 20
As dystopian as the future looks, you’ll find a way to thrive. Trust your instincts and reconsider the most important lessons you learned from your mother. Talking with siblings can clarify that.
CANCER Jun 21-Jul 22
Frustrations in love and career are too big to solve by yourself. Fortunately you have some very wise and resourceful friends. As odd as their ideas may seem, they will likely help.
LEO Jul 23-Aug 22
It’s easy to worry yourself sick. Arguments make it worse. Focus on your career. Working through sexual issues is healing. Quiet time alone gives you space to think about what you need to do.
VIRGO Aug 23-Sep 22
Sharing your innermost thoughts will open up ideas for creative fun. On the way, you open up some difficult childhood memories. Resolving an ugly past can clear the way for a better future.
LIBRA Sep 23-Oct 22
Your home and partnership are heading for big changes. Be generous and comforting in bed. Family commitments need to change. Be clear on what those are. Be adaptive at work.
SCORPIO Oct 23-Nov 21
Obsessing on details leads to accidents and misunderstandings. Don’t neglect the important details; just keep it all in perspective. Your partner’s advice and practical support will prove helpful.
SAGITTARIUS Nov 22-Dec 20
Now’s the time to find a job you enjoy. Channeling your sexual charisma into the job search is helpful, but if you already like your work that charisma can go back to what it does best.
CAPRICORN Dec 21-Jan 19
Trying to manage your family or community will backfire. Focus on having fun. If you’re looking for love, play at being moody, broody and intense; but remember, you’re playing.
AQUARIUS Jan 20-Feb 18
Conversations open up deep psychological insights. Don’t be afraid to ask questions of your family, no matter how odd. Releasing old tensions could have surprising health benefits.
PISCES Feb 19-Mar 19
Reality is challenging your values and your plans, but that’s life. Adaptability and a sense of humor will help you stay true to your core while everything else goes crazy.
ARIES Mar 20-Apr 19
Be very sure that your career is in line with your ambitions. Being unhappy on your job track will get you derailed. Contempt for authority is well-deserved but pick your battles strategically.
TAURUS Apr 20-May 20
“Bad religion” is a subjective experience. Focus on your own personal beliefs; know where you find clarity, support and reassurance. Respect others’ paths while finding your own.
For its lucky 13th, Cowtown’s annual gay and lesbian international film festival, Q Cinema, has love in its heart
NOTICE A COMMON THEME HERE? | Q Cinema is bringing sexy back with its 13th queer film festival, with gay rom-coms like ‘eCupid,’ top, ‘Judas Kiss,’ center, and the lesbian drama ‘Bloomington,’ bottom.
Q Cinema is bringing sexy back.
Its 13th annual festival, which begins on Thursday and runs over next weekend, is flush with sexy, fun and campy films, as well as smattering of dramas (gay, lesbian, trans and bi) through shorts and features. And, for a festival of its size, it manages to attract loads of talent, from stars like Bruce Vilanch and Charlie David to filmmakers like Casper Andreas.
And, in true Cowtown fashion, it finds a way to make it all yee-haw fun, with a bowling party and dishy programs.
Here’s a preview of some of the programs.
Going Down in LA-LA Land
OK, let’s be honest: A lot of gay cinema falls in too-easy pigeonholes and familiar clichés. Twinks getting shirtless. Over-the-top, homo-hating bad guys (who often turn out to be in the closet). Romantic encounters, both cheesy and predictable. Sitcom-y jokes — or else, tortured melodramatic emoting.
But we watch them, and even like them, because they have shirtless twinks. And romantic encounters. And bad guys who turn out to be closet cases.
So sue us. We like our mindless, lightweight fantasies as much as straight folks.
So, when Going Down in LA-LA Land starts with new kid Adam (Matthew Ludwinski) moving to Los Angeles only to be put off by back-stabbing, dating trouble and career misfires, it looks like it’ll be another of its genre: The sappy, silly, easy comedy.
And then something happens: It gets good.
Sure, you can see some of the plot turns easier than at the Texas Motor Speedway, but there’s also a canny, insider quality that adds some heft and authenticity to it all — largely with not-so-subtle references to real Hollywood (including Bruce Vilanch as a Chi Chi LaRue-esque porn director). Writer-director Casper Andreas has crafted a sexy but also funny and wise squinty-eyed look at Tinseltown, from the seductive side to the seedy (often one and the same), from the glamour to the pitfalls.
Andreas gets good performances from Ludwinski and Allison Lane (and himself as a methed-up photographer), but it’s the whole package of nudity, humor and pathos that makes it come together. — Arnold Wayne Jones
Marshall (Houston Rhines) and Gabe (Noah Schuffman) are both cute, young and seven years into their relationship — and, to Marshall at least, it feels as if that’s as long as it has been since they had sex. Hoping to spice up his love life, Marshall downloads an app called eCupid, which promises to match him with the love of his life. But, in traditional genie fashion, you need to be careful what you ask for.
The biggest problem with the film eCupid is that it’s a silly, supernatural romantic fantasy, but Marshall never seems weirded out that his phone seems to be sending text messages on its own, or that everything going wrong could be fixed with a system reboot.
Still, that’s also about the worst thing you can say about this breezy, sexy rom-com, filled with half-naked boys, familiar couples problems and easy-to-digest complications. — A.W.J.
A bad breakup will leave major scars, whether it’s the failure of a band or a couple. In the case of Trigger, it’s both.
ROCKER CHICKS | In ‘Trigger,’ Vic (Tracey Wright, left) and Kat (Molly Parker) recall themselves in their prime, before life took a turn a decade later.
Kat (Molly Parker) and Vic (Tracy Wright) reunite over dinner 10 years after their girl band Trigger suffered an onstage blowout. Vic is harder edged, battling her demons, while Kat has moved on to a glossier, pretentious life in Los Angeles. Both are different people; the tough part for them is figuring out if they are better people.
The movie is mostly a series of conversational vignettes between the two but director Bruce McDonald treats the scenes carefully, so as not to turn them into a gimmick. We learn about their backgrounds apart and relationships with each other: They were bandmates, they were lovers, they both got fucked up by drugs and alcohol.
Parker gets the flashier role as the bitchy but loveable Kat, but this is Wright’s show. As Vic, she delivers depths of frustration and hope while still eking out flashes of exhilaration. Her voice is heartbreaking and genuine. (The role was her last — Wright died of cancer shortly after filming.)
McDonald and screenwriter Daniel McIvor have churned out a very feminine film without pandering to clichés. There is no unnecessary delicacy added here. Minus some kitschy touches that missed
the mark (an after-party at a high school?), Trigger ends up being a surprising reality check that isn’t about a rock ‘n’ roll band, but how getting older is inevitable. — Rich Lopez
Bloomington Bloomington is about a student-teacher lesbian relationship, which falls under the still-lingering taboo of May-December romance with a strong sense of sexual exploitation. Jackie (Sarah Stouffer) is a 22-year-old college student; Prof. Catherine Stark (Allison McAtee) bears an almost creepy resemblance to Jackie’s mother, who was virtually absent during her daughter’s teen years.
Jackie spent those years as an actress in a TV series, Neptune 26, which ended four years earlier. Now Jackie’s in college, and although her fellow students are awed by her celebrity, her problems fitting in stem more from her own standoffishness. She hears rumors about the notorious Prof. Stark, who beds her female students, only to have them disappear. So when the two meet at a student-faculty mixer, they waste no time hooking up. The power dynamics change when Jackie is asked to reprise her role in a feature version of Neptune 26 and it becomes Catherine’s turn to worry about being discarded.
Perhaps out of fear of the creep factor, none of the displays of affection between the women even approach soft-core porn. They kiss a lot but when they take their clothes off, Brazilian-born writer-director Fernanda Cardoso gets coy about camera placement. Even Jackie’s bathtub scene has her well covered in bubbles.
Cardoso has supplied a lot of surprisingly intelligent dialogue about psychology, show business and academia, to shore up a plot that’s purely emotional. The ending may not be what you expect, but
ACTION! | An aspiring actor (Matthew Ludwinski) gets talked into making a film with a notorious porn director (Bruce Vilanch) in Q Cinema’s opening night film ‘Going Down in LA-LA Land.’
it’s in line with Cardoso’s constant clash between intellect and emotion. A couple of Ani DiFranco songs are well used to boost the film’s lez appeal, but your overall reaction will depend on whether you buy the central relationship. I didn’t. — Steve Warren
It’s been fun to watch Charlie David mature as both an actor and a producer. He first shot to prominence in the supernatural gay soap Dante’s Cove, where being hot and naked were the primary criteria. He parlayed that gig into hosting duties for the Logo travelog Bump! and the gay romance Mulligans.
Now, in Judas Kiss, David gets to show off his strongest acting chops yet. He plays Zach Wells, a once-promising filmmaker who pissed away his potential on drugs and bad decisions. When he returns to his alma mater for a film festival, Zach meets his younger self, and gets the chance to fix the errors of his youth.
The supernatural element is more subtle here than Dante’s, which allows the idea behind it to come through: How difficult it is to be someone you aren’t, no matter how much information you have.
The production values are as slick and sophisticated as gay cinema gets, and there’s a deliberative, smart style to it. — A.W.J.
All programs at the Rose Marine Theater, 1440 Main St., Fort Worth, except as noted
Going Down in LA-LA Land.
A gay newcomer find his way in Los Angeles, from porn to closeted movie stars. Filmmaker/stars in attendance.
Preceded by the short On the Bus. June 2 at 7:30 p.m.
Going Down in Cowtown Opening Night Party At the T&P Tavern, June 2 at 9:30 p.m.
Our Shorts Are Showing 1.
Program includes: The Colonel’s Outing, Nothing Happened, Freak, Slip Away, I was a Teenage Werebear,
plus a sneak peek at the new project from Israel Luna and Toni Miller, The Zombie Project. June 3 at 6:30 p.m.
An app takes over the romantic life of a 30-year-old gay man suffering from the seven- year itch. Filmmaker/stars in attendance. Preceded by the short Waiting for Goliath. June 3 at 8:45 p.m.
There’s an App for That Party. At The Usual, June 3 at 10 p.m.
Our Shorts Are Showing 2.
Program includes: Amen, Tools 4 Fools, Stay, The Defenders, Under Pressure, Bedfellows, and It’s Just a Community Place.
June 4 at noon.
The Cost of Love.
A gay escort craves genuine love. June 4 a 2 p.m.
Former lovers from a girl band reunite after a decade. Preceded by the short Allison My Love. June 4 at 4 p.m.
2 Frogs in the West.
A French-Canadian hitchhiker finds herself attracted to a man and a woman at the same time. Preceded by the short Refuge. June 4 at 6 p.m.
An Evening with Bruce Vilanch.
The LA-LA Land co-star dishes (followed by a bowling after-party with Vilanch at Lucky Strike). June 4 at 8 p.m.
We Were Here.
Documentary about the early days of the AIDS crisis in San Francisco. Preceded by the short Fucked. June 5 at noon.
AIDS at 30: Panel Discussion. June 5 at 2 p.m.
A college professor engages in a romance with her female student, a child star. June 5 a 3 p.m.
Gun Hill Road.
A Latino man, newly out of prison, discovers his son is now transgender. Preceded by the short Professor Godoy. June 4 at 4 p.m.
Charlie David stars as a time-traveling filmmaker given a second chance. Filmmaker/stars in attendance. Preceded by the video Like It Rough. June 4 at 6 p.m.
The Q Awards/Closing Night Party
June 4 at 9 p.m.
This article appeared in the Dallas Voice print edition May 27, 2011.
What’s the American Family Association’s big takeaway from Captain Owen Honors’ video controversy? That once Don’t Ask Don’t Tell repeal is all said and the done, the right of religious people to use “Saturday Night Live type” anti-gay, anti-woman slurs might be compromised:
Church revivals might conjure up suppressed memories, but we think that won’t be a problem here. WIth Leslie Jordan’s Church Revival, the Emmy-winning actor makes church time funtime with his Southern boy wit and humor. Sister Helen Holy will be your guest hostess. And likely the two will keep you from speaking in tongues.
Just laughing in them.
Sia grabbed most people’s attention with “Breathe Me,” that unforgettable song from the final episode of Six Feet Under. The lesbian singer released her fifth album, We Are Born, this year and premiered her newest video just last week. It’s a bit on the slow side so it may not rev your Monday up as you’d like. But she does that dreamy, melancholy sound so well. Watch it below.
Meanwhile, Fred Schneider from The B-52′s went with his side project band The Superions for the holidays. The trio released the awful album Destination…Christmas! The album should have been funnier, but instead was just song after song of idiocy. A couple of songs did stand out and one was Santa Je T’aime. The video isn’t hardcore but is probably NSFW. Men in drag with big fake breasts might just throw off your boss or snooping IT person. It’s also ridiculous (as have all their videos been for the album) and loses the humor of the song. I just want to take Schneider and shake him for releasing such bad work. How could this be when he’s so much fun with The B-52′s? It’s distressing, but I am kinda loving their T-shirt for sale which is also a title of one of their songs:
It's not often you'll see an actor disagree with his director in public. Even Zach Galifianakis was cautious to bash The Hangover 2's temporary decision to give Mel Gibson a cameo. But that's not why Vince Vaughn is agreeing with The Dilemma's Ron Howard about keeping the "electric cars are gay" joke in the film. It's because Vaughn is just the type of guy you'd expect to be completely at ease with bullying.
Okay. A couple of days ago, I posted a blog here about 10-year-old Will Phillips of Arkansas who has refused to stand up in class and recite the Pledge of Allegiance until there truly is — as it promises — liberty and justice for all, and that includes equal rights for LGBT people.
Will told CNN in an interview that because of his stand, his classmates have made the assumption he is gay and have been making fun of him and calling him “gaywad.”
Now Jon Stewart has arranged some protection for Will: