‘Little Shop of Horrors’ plays tonight at WaterTower

Green thumbs beware

When a good idea turns into a blood-craving monster plant — well, lives get turned around. WaterTower Theatre premieres the fun and frantic Little Shop of Horrors, where Seymour, a lowly florist, tries to turn his fortune around and ends up with a big mess. Alan Menken and Howard Ashman’s songs only add to the wacky flair of it all.

DEETS: WTT, 15650 Addison Road, Addison. Through July 31. $30. WaterTowerTheatre.org.

—  Rich Lopez

Immigrant Punk & SuZanne Kimbrell perform at Pizza Lounge

No Palin/Trump slice tonight

Local lesbian rockers Immigrant Punk, pictured, and SuZanne Kimbrell turn up the volume on dinner tonight. They perform a double bill in Exposition Park tonight. It’s a tough call between them and the Mavs, but a win-win either way.

DEETS: Pizza Lounge, 841 Exposition Ave. 8 p.m. Facebook.com/ImmigrantPunk

—  Rich Lopez

Starvoice • 05.27.11

By Jack Fertig


Heidi Klum turns 38 on Wednesday. The model turned TV host and producer changed the way we look at the fashion world with her very popular Project Runway. Because of the show, some gay designers have gone to be stars of their own like Austin Scarlett, Santino Rice and season four winner Christian Siriano. A Runway all-stars is apparently in the works.



Mercury squaring Neptune in Pisces while entering Gemini inflates wonderfully imaginative notions. Jupiter entering Taurus could ground them and find profitable applications. Jupiter in Taurus for the next year should_ be good for the economy. It will be good for bankers at least.


GEMINI May 21-Jun 20
Get creative. You have big challenges in the next year. Your intuition is now unusually sharp to see how you can turn those into opportunities. Spiritual guidance can be especially helpful now.

CANCER Jun 21-Jul 22
Dreams lure you too easily into never-never-lands of fantasy and escape. Sharing some of those phantasmagorical reveries with friends can help you find some practical outlet for them.

LEO Jul 23-Aug 22
Remember the difference between dreams and goals. Friends encouraging you to chase after your dreams offer helpful inspiration, but don’t let them distract you from practical aims.

VIRGO Aug 23-Sep 22
Your brain is buzzing with schemes for success. Your partner encourages all your wildest ideas. Not. You need a leveler head with a bit of critical distance to give you pragmatic advice.

LIBRA Sep 23-Oct 22
Expansive, fortunate Jupiter is starting a year in your house of sex. The deeper you go the greater the rewards. Don’t be shy. Neither is without risks, but Jupiter is good to have on your side.

SCORPIO Oct 23-Nov 21
You and your sweetie are due for some frolic. That could open up some questions and confusion. Keeping communications clear is a small challenge. The rewards are well worth it.

Job opportunities open up for you. Have faith in yourself. If familial encouragement is unrealistic, don’t worry about letting them down for what’s in the real world. If you’re happy, they are too.

CAPRICORN Dec 21-Jan 19
You’re way too open to distractions and thus, accidents. Mediation, poetry, music or art will get you back in balance. Take classes in any of those . You need new ways of seeing the world.

AQUARIUS Jan 20-Feb 18
Struggle between your deepest desires and economic necessity feels brutal. A light, playful conversation with your partner  can help you find a way to afford your dreams, or find reconciliation.

PISCES Feb 19-Mar 19
Whatever you have to offer, make it heard and known. Your family will back you up in your endeavors, but you really need to be very clear on who you are and what it is you’ve got.
ARIES  Mar 20-Apr 19
Your recent lucky spree will focus more on financial fortune. Mad dreams and inspirations offer some clues. Talk out your crazy notions with friends and find a way to bring them to the bank.

TAURUS Apr 20-May 20
Recent hard times turn around. Cash in on your good fortune. Turn your friends’ suggestions into practical ideas. Inspirations now point the way to future fulfillment of your dreams.

Jack Fertig can be reached at 415-864-8302 or Starjack.com

This article appeared in the Dallas Voice print edition May 27, 2011.

—  Kevin Thomas

WATCH: A little eye-candy for a drab Friday

I know that Abercrombie & Fitch clothes are designed, ideally, for younger men than myself (next week I turn 39 — again! A new record!), but I find myself pawing through their racks nonetheless, grabbing the occasional muscle shirt. And here’s why: With ads like these, you can only imagine your own body looks as good this way. I know it does not. But that’s how advertising works.

—  Arnold Wayne Jones

The Corporate View, Part 4: Your Turn to Ask Questions

I hope what I’ve posted before has been useful or at least informative.

If you’ve ever been to an Out & Equal Workplace Summit (and I encourage you to think about attending), you know how content-rich this topic is — and the tactical ways of achieving workplace equality are as varied as is our community.

Taken from a decidedly business-oriented approach, however, certain broad themes do start to emerge:

  • The business case is there for LGBT equality in the workplace.
  • LGBT visibility plays a critical part in making LGBT inclusion happen.
  • Straight allies are one of our most valuable resources.
  • Behavior shapes attitudes — pinpoint and shape specific behaviors and shifts in people’s attitudes will follow.
  • Deliberate planning is fundamental for lasting success.
  • Achieving an LGBT-inclusive workplace is a process, not an end-point (at least for the foreseeable future).

So, before posting any more information about the CEI or efforts to achieve inclusive work environments, I thought now would be a good time to pause and take questions. I’ll do my best to respond over the week-end.

And (once again) for the record, I am not a plant or employee of HRC. I am a cisgender, gay, middle-aged, white male. I’m currently the co-Chair of Out & Equal Houston, and formerly the President of Chevron’s global PRIDE Employee Network — where (during my tenure) I helped get the company to implement trans-inclusive non-discrimination policies, authored the company’s transgender guidebook, and garner Chevron’s endorsement of a fully inclusive ENDA.

The views in these diaries are entirely my own and the materials and data I will be sharing come from my own files over the last 15 years and public records — as well as data from HRC, various Out & Equal Workplace Summit workshops and resources garnered from networking.

The floor is yours! (And PHB TOS are still in effect.)

Pam’s House Blend – Front Page

—  admin

Video: Huckabee in Iowa, applauds dangerous decision to turn retention process into discriminatory smoke signal

This man wants to be your next president of this supposedly church/state-separated nation, a job that will most certainly come with a few U.S. Supreme Court picks:

[Retention vote] wasn’t personal. It was just business. It was the business of protecting marriage the family. It was the business of believing that there really is a God to whom we are ultimately responsible and accountable, and that we are not merely answering to political governments set up by men, but we ultimately will answer to all things to a holy God who will ask whether or not we held not to a human standard but rather to an eternal standard that supersedes all the of the human standards that can be voted in or voted out. And when we stand by those things it is not personal, it’s business.

Full justice-chilling breadth:

[YT: iowanews1]


*Our many posts on the gay-focused Iowa retention vote and why it was so wrongheaded/dangerous (regardless of one’s personal view of the judges’ careers, btw): Iowa For Freedom Archive [G-A-Y]

Good As You

—  admin

When Officials Turn a Blind Eye To Bullied Gays Adults

Dutch gays are used to taking abuse from American military leaders, but for one gay couple the abuse came from some neighborhood youths in Utrecht, southeast of Amsterdam (where the couple moved). In a lawsuit seeking 40,000 euros in damages, the couple claims police there did little to investigate the "material and immaterial damage" the harassment caused. The couple also wants Utrecht officials to be forced to prosecute the teens, though Mayor Aleid Wolfsen says without any witnesses there's nothing authorities can do. And in other news out of the Netherlands, The Gays there are organizing a protest against American rap group Jedi Mind Tricks performing there, since they have lyrics like, "Beat a faggot till he ain't fuckin’ gay no more."

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—  admin

Sherman, Turn On The Wayback Machine For The Obama Administration’s LGBT Legislative Agenda

Thumbnail Link: Sherman, Mr. Peabody, And The Wayback MachineFor those of you old enough to remember Sherman and Mister Peabody, those two were in a “middle” cartoon for the Rocky And Bullwinkle Show. They used the Wayback Machine to go an look back at improbable history.

Here’s some improbable history for you: The Office Of Personal Management’s (OPM’s) John Berry, with the echo of the Family Research Council’s (FRC’s) Tony Perkins, predicting the path of lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) community history’s future path, in the video OPM Director John Berry Outlines Obama Administration’s Gay Agenda:

Many of us are noting how the Employment Non-Discrimination Act (ENDA) has seemed to have fallen off the national discourse of LGBT issues, and in the 111th Congress, with strong Democratic Party majorities, we’re didn’t see any vote on ENDA — and it’s unlikely we’ll see a vote on ENDA in the 111th Congress’s lame duck session.

The Wayback Machine is a strange device, giving us a view into the past, with its impact on the present — and the future.

I’m believing more and more what Representative Jackie Speier stated last June regarding ENDA might even be an optimistic assessment at this point, and her take on DADT being passed into law by the end of this year appears to me to be a very unlikely outcome to come out of our 111th Congress.

Congresswoman Jackie Speier put a damper on hopes for swift House passage of the Employment Non-Discrimination Act, telling the Bay Area Reporter over the weekend that she doesn’t see the LGBT workplace protections becoming law anytime soon.

Addressing the crowd of gay and straight political and community leaders at Sunday’s Alice B. Toklas LGBT Democratic Club Pride breakfast, Speier said, “Speaker [Nancy] Pelosi is doing all she can to ensure a majority for next year so we can pass ENDA.”

Asked later in a brief interview if that meant the House would not vote on ENDA this year, Speier told the B.A.R., “The rest of the year is in question.”

“There’s no question ‘Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell’ will be history this year,” she said. “ENDA, we will have that law for sure within the next five years.”

Who knew that John Berry and Tony Perkins would be on the same page on expectations for the Obama Administration. That said, it appears to me that we’re not on the page to actually make the goals of that LGBT legislative agenda turn into actual laws.



* HRC Backstory (September 17, 2009): OPM Head Berry Says Prioritize ENDA; Take Action at passENDAnow.org
Pam’s House Blend – Front Page

—  admin

House Republican Leaders Want to Turn the Clock Back with “Pledge to America”

Today, House Republican leaders released their “Pledge to America,” outlining how they would govern should they win back control of the House in November.  While the document focuses heavily on economic issues, its “pledge” also includes hostility to LGBT equality, promising support for “traditional marriage” and, in a thinly-veiled attack on LGBT advances through legislation and the courts, criticizing actions that “thwart the will of the people and overturn their votes and their values.”  While the document itself doesn’t tell as much more about how these Republicans would treat our community, the lengthy record of anti-LGBT efforts during a decade of Republican control of Congress speaks volumes.  LGBT people should see this “Pledge” for what it really is – a promise to try and turn back the clock on the LGBT equality on Capitol Hill.   

When anti-equality forces controlled Congress for a decade (1994-2005), they stymied any progress on LGBT issues, instead making attacks on our community part of their governing agenda.  Among these were:

  • Attempting twice to amend the U.S. Constitution to deny marriage equality to same-sex couples nationwide
  • Trying to strip federal courts of the authority to hear marriage equality cases
  • Blocking the District of Columbia’s local efforts to provide domestic partnership benefits to its employees and to fight astronomical rates of HIV infection through proven needle exchange programs
  • Cutting funding for HIV prevention, research and treatment despite a growing epidemic, while pouring federal dollars into disproven abstinence-only programs that exclude or even denigrate LGBT youth
  • Standing in the way of the appointment of openly-LGBT administration officials, like openly-gay Ambassador to Luxembourg James Hormel

A Congress controlled by anti-equality Republican leaders could very well return to this playbook, and even go further by:

  • Cutting Justice Department funds for enforcement of the Matthew Shepard and James Byrd, Jr. Hate Crimes Prevention Act
  • Trying to roll back Obama administration advances for LGBT people, like benefits for the partners of Foreign Service officers or hospital visitation protections, by threatening appropriations dollars for federal agencies
  • Standing in the way of the nomination of pro-equality federal judges

Under a Republican Congress, key positions that control the fate of pro-LGBT legislation would be held by notorious anti-equality legislators.   In such a world, for example:

  • The House and Senate could both be led by a group of legislators who, at best, rated a 20 on HRC’s Congressional Scorecard for the 110th Congress.  In fact, potential House leaders Reps. John Boehner, Eric Cantor and Mike Pence have consistently scored a perfect zero since they came to Congress.  The highest any potential Senate leaders – including Senators McConnell, Kyl, Thune and Cornyn – could muster on our Scorecard is a 20.     
  • Arizona Senator John McCain, the notorious opponent of repealing the discriminatory “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” law, could become Chairman of the Senate Armed Services Committee
  • The Senate Judiciary Committee could be led not by Vermont Senator Patrick Leahy, a supporter of marriage equality, but by Senator Jeff Sessions of Alabama, who attacked then-Supreme Court nominee Elena Kagan for opposing “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” as Dean of Harvard Law, arguing that in doing so she “punished the military, and demeaned our soldiers as they were courageously fighting for our country in two wars overseas”  
  • House Judiciary Committee Chairman John Conyers (D-MI), a champion of the hate crimes law, could be replaced by Rep. Lamar Smith of Texas, who said expanding hate crimes protections “undermines one of the most basic principles of our criminal justice system — ‘equal justice for all.’”
  • The House Education and Labor Committee, where the Employment Non-Discrimination Act is considered, could be led by Rep. John Kline of Minnesota, who called ENDA “a significant departure from longstanding civil rights law” that could “lead to an explosion in litigation “
  • Instead of Rep. Henry Waxman (D-CA), a longstanding leader on LGBT issues and HIV/AIDS as Chairman of the House Energy and Commerce Committee, we could have Rep. Joe Barton of Texas, who recently opposed a bill that would collect health data on LGBT people in an effort to address health disparities, saying, “for the life of me I do not see any reason at all to do this bill.” 

Human Rights Campaign | HRC Back Story

—  John Wright