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When Old Friends Turn Ugly

When I came to New York at the end of the ‘80s, the social pattern of life went something like this: Uncle Charlie’s on Greenwich after work; the Spike and the Eagle on the West Side Highway for a naughty late Saturday night; Rounds on East 53rd Street to window shop the rent boys every once in a while; and The Works on Columbus at West 82nd Street for a weeknight drop-by where maybe one would get lucky. Now, all these landmarks are gone, for better or worse, replaced by newer watering holes and newer patrons to populate them Comment

There He Goes Again

Conservative lawmakers are gearing up for a vote on the Marriage Protection Amendment (MPA) in the U.S. Senate this year, an attempt to gain political advantage just before the November elections, according to gay rights groups and allies. Comment

The Beautiful and the Damned

Writer Bruce Benderson is an intellectual dandy devoted to danger, drugs, thugs, and sexual excess. He’s half Jean Genet, half Joan Crawford, and he tries out different points of view like Crawford modeled Adrian couture. Scornful of bourgeois complacency, he writes from the point of view of an outsider who is aware of his privileges yet still longs for the instability and vitality he observes in the lower and criminal classes. Comment

State High Court Voids Council’s Benefits Law

A year and a half after Democrat Christine Quinn won the support of 40 of her 50 City Council colleagues in overriding Republican Mayor Michael Bloomberg’s veto of the Equal Benefits Law, the new speaker stood before reporters Tuesday vowing to keep fighting for the legislation, despite the fact that the measure had been overturned by the state’s highest court. Comment

Sharp Judicial Split on Council Law

Presenting a reverse Valentine to gay and lesbian New Yorkers on February 14, a bare majority of the state’s highest court ruled that the Equal Benefits Law (EBL) passed by the New York City Coun Comment

Sex in the Virtual City

As part of their ongoing efforts to reach young gay and bisexual men, particularly in communities of color, with effective HIV prevention messages, the Gay Men’s Health Crisis and AIDS Project Los Angeles on Tuesday launched a new Internet-based tool, mysexycity.com. Comment

Say Amen!

By Gus Solomons jr. Comment

Outside In on London Stage

First things first. Get your tickets now to “The History Boys,” starting previews at New York’s Broadhurst Theatre on April 14 and running for 20 weeks. The original cast, led by Richard Griffiths and Frances de la Tour, was in top form at the National Theatre in London earlier this month warming up for the American premiere of Alan Bennett’s masterpiece ostensibly about the purpose of education, but touching on no less than the m Comment

New Briefs

NJ Supremes Hear Marriage Case Comment

NEITHER SLEET, NOR SNOW…

It may have been the largest snowfall on record in New York City, but nearly 27 inches didn’t take the snap out of the Rainbow Flag Sunday, at either Christopher Street, east of Bedford, or on West Fourth Street near West 11th. Comment

Making God a Democrat

It may be heresy, but what happens if God has close ties to the Democratic Party? Coretta Scott King’s death was painful because she provided moral leadership after her husband’s death, but it also made me recall that, in the 1960s, the Democrats had numerous ties to religion. Comment

At Long Last, Coretta Scott King Rests in Peace

Two of my partner Bert’s nephews, Jonathan and Patrick, brothers, returned safely this week from Iraq. Jonathan entered the service first, pre-9/11, and some years ago, Bert and I spent a Christmas with Suzie’s family, when he was home on leave after basic training. As Jonathan regaled us all with stories of Army life down in Texas, he began to describe the cadence that his drill sergeant used to motivate the new recruits while marching or running them. Having read of the complaints made privately by Barry Winchell, the Army Pfc. murdered at Fort Campbell, Kentucky, about his drill sergeant’s rhymes, I was braced for what would come next in Jonathan’s story. Comment

Iron John Returns

Desert Wind: What Men Talk About In the Desert Comment

Indulging Cult Film Passions

“FILM COMMENT selects” Comment

Historical Innovations

Carla Accardi and Lucio Fontana Comment

High/Low, Over The Top

Angelo Filomeno Comment

Hawai’i LGBT Youth Win

The American Civil Liberties Union won a big victory for troubled LGBT youth in Hawai’i, with a ruling on February 7 by U.S. District Judge J. Michael Seabright that the Hawai’i Youth Correctional Facility (HYCF) in Kailua appears to be violating the federal constitutional due process rights of kids who are LGBT or perceived as such, and finding that the plaintiffs are entitled to preliminary injunctive relief, the details of which are still to be worked out. Comment

Gone to the Dogs

Bridge and Tunnel Comment

Gay Marriage a Valentine’s Focus

The Valentine’s Day sun had yet not worked its way to the front door of the Municipal Building at One Centre Street. People stood in line, some with bouquets of colorful flowers, others dressed smartly and crisply waiting for their chance to make it inside to the Marriage Bureau so they could sign the paperwork to be married. Comment

Frieden Posture Draws AIDS Groups’ Fire

A number of AIDS groups are opposing proposals by the city’s health commissioner that would end written consent for HIV testing and allow the health department to monitor the treatment of New Yorkers with AIDS and HIV. Comment

Episodic Fantasia

“I was here last night, too!” “Really? I’m definitely coming back tomorrow!” Comment

Double Click for Love

When winter approached and I found my sheets too cold, I set out to find a nice lesbian to help warm them up. If modern love is a commodity, I reasoned, what better place to shop than online? Comment

Deserving Diva

Long-time opera fanatics feel about Verdi’s “La traviata” the way foodies do about coq au vin—it’s absolutely a classic, it should be fairly simple to do, but you’re disappointed almost every time you try it. Well, the perfect coq au vin may remain elusive, but the Metropolitan Opera has found the recipe for a “Traviata” that is very palatable indeed. The secret ingredient is a soprano named Angela Gheorghiu. Comment

Dean’s Kiss and Make-Up

Amidst several weeks of controversy in the LGBT press about a reorganization of the Democratic National Committee that eliminated the “gay desk” or liaison position there, Dr. Howard Dean, the party chairman and former Vermont governor and presidential candidate, was in New York Monday to meet with community leaders. Comment

Blizzard of Pride

Volume 5, Number 7 | February 16-22, 2006 Comment

Anti-Marriage Rally Smaller

Whether the heat has gone out of the issue in New York or everyone is just waiting to see what the courts do, actions for and against same-sex marriage were more modest this year. The 50 people Marriage Equality New York turned out was up a bit from last year, but nowhere near the hundreds that rallied in 2004. And the City Action Coalition (CAC), that brought 300 ministers to City Hall last year, had a lower key assemblage of about 25 on the steps of the building this Valentine’s Day. Comment

Another Day in Paradise

BATTLE IN HEAVEN Comment

7 Days and 7 Nights

Bi Women Photo Show Comment

Albany Court Rules Against Gay Marriage

Volume 5, Number 7 | February 16-22, 2006 Comment

Why Sean Maloney Runs

“The stuff that goes on in Albany every day would make Jack Abramoff blush,” said Sean Maloney, who talks a lot about corruption in New York’s capital city these day. He does so because that issue is central to his candidacy for the Democratic nomination for state attorney general. And in pushing the issue of “fixing” Albany, as he describes his mission, the gay Murray Hill attorney, who will turn 40 this spring, lays claim to the mantle as Eliot Spitzer’s logical heir. Comment

WeHo Gay Murder Verdict Upheld

A California appeals court dealt a setback to convicted murderer Jeffrey Alsborg in his quest for a new trial regarding his culpability in the 1998 death of his lover, Alexander Campbell. Ruling unanimously in an unpublished opinion announced on January 20, the 2nd District Court of Appeal found no error in Los Angeles County Superior Court Judge Bob Bowers’ rejection of Alsborg’s request that new medical experts be appointed to assist his court-appointed lawyer in preparing a new trial motion. Comment

Visiting Herman

It could be worse, I say to myself, as I buy my Trailways ticket, he could be on death row. He could be dying in a prison infirmary; he could be getting beaten up by racist gangs. Instead, Herman Bell is doing 25 years to life at a prison outside New York City, where we can take the bus to visit him and make sure he’s OK. Comment

TWO WOMEN FIGHT FOR DIVERSE SOUTH BRONX

Maria del Carmen Arroyo, elected the City Councilwoman for Bronx District 17 a year ago, acknowledged, in a Gay City News interview at her district office, the importance of LGBT community issues in her overall agenda. Comment

True Calling

During the past few years, Steven Fales toured the country with his unassuming one-boy show, “Confessions of a Mormon Boy,” playing to packed, enthusiastic houses. But one question bedeviled him wherever he went, “Is the story fact or fiction?” Comment

Transsexual and Stuck in Iran

The latest testimony from a victim of the Islamic Republic of Iran’s lethal anti-gay pogrom comes from inside Mashad, the ultra-conservative city under strict religious control where two teenage gay boys were hanged for their homosexuality in July of last year. Comment

Swimming Upstream

“Huck and Holden,” the new play down at the Cherry Lane Studio, is not going to set the world on fire. Yet it is an engaging play enlivened by an absolutely charming and talented cast that delivers a fun evening. Rajiv Joseph’s five-character play about two young people at college and the spirits that visit them is a quasi-absurdist exploration of the desire to define oneself as part of the wider culture. Comment

Sex Snitch Rule Win

BY ARTHUR S. LEONARD  Comment

Rauschenberg Is Gay

Robert Rauschenberg, a student of Joseph Albers—the “Homage to a Square” guy—took Bauhaus concepts of collage-making based in the view that everything is potential art material and married it to Abstract Expressionism. To paraphrase Jasper Johns, a combine is a painting taking a stroll in sculpture drag. Comment

New York City’s War on Marijuana

New Yorkers believe their city is indeed New Amsterdam in its blasé attitude toward marijuana. In fact, New York City pursues a proactive drug policy that might make it the world capital of marijuana arrests. Comment

New Tales of the South Bronx

Recently hyped across the New York City press as the new real estate investment hotspot, the South Bronx section now dubbed SoBro has already turned into solid gay territory. The Bruck-ner Bar & Grill on Bruckner Boulevard, a new gay-managed spot, has begun to attract a growing local, mixed clientele of artists and students, who use it day and night as their kitchen, living room, and lounge. Comment

News Briefs

The funeral of civil rights giant Coretta Scott King, 78, was presided over by anti-gay activists Reverend Bernice King, her daughter and caretaker, and Bishop Eddie Long, pastor of the New Birth Missionary Baptist megachurch where the service took place. Reverend King and Bishop Long did not use the occasion to contradict Mrs. King’s longtime support for LGBT rights—including same-sex marriage—and other speakers did note her strong solidarity with gay folks. Comment

Moving Targets

Stretching over a month to accommodate a bumper supply, MoMA’s newly double-length “Documentary Fortnight” may soon want to reconsider its tag, with no sign of the documentary tide abating. Comment

Looking For Love

“A Year without Love,” based on the published diaries of Pablo Pérez, is an astonishing and riveting drama about an HIV-positive young man involved in the S/M scene in Buenos Aires. What makes co-writer/director Anahí Berneri’s film so compelling—and so moving—is the absolute humanity of the main character. He is the gay everyman—someone looking for love and acceptance, but also insecure and stubborn. Comment

Letters to the Editor

February 7, 2006 Comment

At Long Last, Coretta Scott King Rests in Peace

Two of my partner Bert’s nephews, Jonathan and Patrick, brothers, returned safely this week from Iraq. Jonathan entered the service first, pre-9/11, and some years ago, Bert and I spent a Christmas with Suzie’s family, when he was home on leave after basic training. As Jonathan regaled us all with stories of Army life down in Texas, he began to describe the cadence that his drill sergeant used to motivate the new recruits while marching or running them. Having read of the complaints made privately by Barry Winchell, the Army Pfc. murdered at Fort Campbell, Kentucky, about his drill sergeant’s rhymes, I was braced for what would come next in Jonathan’s story. Comment

January On The Vocal Scene

David Daniels was to make his Philadelphia debut in a recital a few years back and was felled by the flu. The City of Brotherly Love finally got to hear the openly gay countertenor superstar in a program with the Philadelphia Orchestra last month. Heard January 12, Daniels was in fine form, dispensing beautiful tone and masterful legato despite the dullish efforts of Bernard Labadie to make a subset of the orchestra’s excellent players sound appropriate to this music. Comment

Rare Musical Treats

Benjamin Britten’s only comic opera, “Albert Herring,” is having its first New York performance in over 30 years at Henry Street Settlement’s Harry De Jur Playhouse, through February 18. It’s being presented by Gotham Chamber Opera, which artistic director/conductor Neil Goren founded in 2001. Comment

Frieden Pushes HIV Law Overhaul

The city health department has embarked on a campaign to change the state laws that govern HIV testing and the department’s ability to share medical information about people with AIDS with doctors and other healthcare providers. Comment

Female Body’s Emanicpation

Legend has it that the shade of Peter Stuyvesant patrols St. Mark’s Church in-the-Bowery, home of Danspace Project. If so, Pete might have been startled to come upon spectral intruders one night when two hazy apparitions suddenly loomed across the sanctuary’s wall. But what appeared to be a haunting was only a video projection of dancers Jenni Hong and Mariangela Lopez flitting through the air. Comment

Far More then an Echo

BY GUS SOLOMONS JR. Comment

Ending Cyber Apartheid

They gathered in unity. The undead and the night elves. The gnomes and the trolls. Mounted on dragon-like “raptors” and on foot, they gathered, all together, 70 to 100 of them, last June at the “Crossroads,” a popular gathering place—and sometime battleground—deep in the immensely popular World of Warcraft online role playing game. The gathering surely was a unique event — cyberspace’s first gay pride march. Comment

Double or Nothing

As Sara Juli waxes hyperactive about personal problems, she cycles through movement phrases, releasing her thoughts through dance. It’s partly planned, partly improvised, and superbly played for maximum comic impact; Juli works the text and audience thoroughly, literally pushing her weight around, testing the limits. Her aesthetic is a fine interplay of words and expressive movement—lunging, looping, aggressive gestures—using repetition, halting verbal variations and rhythms, and the unpredictability of interpersonal improvisation. Comment

Born at the Right Time

Chance operations have led Anita Cheng’s life inevitably toward a symbiosis of art and digital media. “I was born at the right time,” she said—born into the first generation of choreographers to grow up using a computer. Comment

A Joyful Return to Color

Recent polychrome wood relief panels by Barbara Schwartz convey a quietly magisterial beauty by means of playful colors and shapes. They refer, simultaneously, to Elizabeth Murray’s cartoonish side, Sonia Delaunay’s prismatic fracturing of light, and Henri Matisse’s cut paper works. This exhibition features two distinctly different yet related series of abstract paintings that Schwartz undertook from 2003-2005. They signal the artist’s return to her joy in color, after working exclusively in black and white for two years after 9/11. Comment

7 Days of readings

Recently Noted. Comment

7 Days in cinema

BALLETS RUSSES This documentary usefully renovates a neglected eminence, chronicling the company’s history 1909 as the inspiration of Sergei Diaghilev, the polymath Russian expatriate, who drew Matisse, Picasso, and Stravinsky into orbit around the nucleus of choreographers Mikhail Fokine, Léonide Massine, and dancer Vaslav Nijinksy. The highly wrought script manages the feat of compressing an 80-year history into exactly two vacuum-packed hours. Yet, it would have been more valuable still had it accurately conveyed the company’s uniquely progressive queer reality. IFC Center. (Ioannis Mookas) Comment

7 Days and 7 Nights

WilliamsWorks, the new dance company under the artistic direction of former New York City Ballet and Stephen Petronio Company dancer Todd Williams, kicks off the 92nd Street Y Harkness Dance Festival in its first solo evening in New York. Two world premieres — “Exquisite Corpse,” a duet for Williams and guest collaborator Glen Rumsey, and “Value Intensity” for 14 dancers — and the sextet “108” inspired by the sacred geometry of Hindu mandalas make up the program. Live music accompanies the performances. The Ailey Theater, 405 W. 55th St. at Ninth Ave. $20, $15 students and seniors at 212-415-5500 or 92y.org/HarknessFestival. Through Sat. at 8 p.m., Sun. at 2 p.m. and 7 p.m. Comment

7 Days in dance

Volume 5, Number 6 | February 9 - 15, 2006 Comment

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