Thursday, February 28, 2013
After her brava performance during this week's episode of RuPaul's Drag Race, Seattle's self-described "premier narcoleptic drag queen," Jinkx Monsoon, has been popping up a lot more on the internet. Case in point: this wonderful mini-documentary/interview with Jinkx, aka Jerick Hoffer, delves into how Jinkx came to be, her influences and her ideas. It also includes a lovely surprise at the end: her amazing singing voice.
Check it out.
Wednesday, February 27, 2013
is looking for your help, and all you have to do is tell them where you like to drink.
The Capital District Health Authority (CDHA)’s public health unit, along with the provincial Department of Health and Wellness, are looking to launch an education campaign related to the ongoing syphilis outbreak among men who have sex with men (MSM) in Halifax.
The campaign’s main target will be online advertising, but posters in various drinking establishments are a key component of the campaign. That's where you come in.
PrideHealth is asking MSM to tell them their top five bars in Halifax. In fact, anywhere alcohol is served -- pubs, clubs, lounges and more.
"We want the campaign to reach as many guys as possible, so we want to know, 'Where do you and your friends go to socialize,'" says Kirk Furlotte, prideHealth's health-promotion intern. Furlotte mentions that they are looking for bars that may not be viewed as strictly gay or queer spaces, such as Menz & Mollyz, Reflections or Seadogs. "We’re already planning to go there," he says. He also points out that individuals who participate don’t need to list five bars. "Even one or two would be helpful."
As for privacy, Furlotte assures that your name and personal responses won't be shared and will be deleted once all the information has been gathered. He notes that not every bar that is suggested will be guaranteed to be a part of this campaign.
Send your results to firstname.lastname@example.org with your top five bars. If you’d like to know the final results, mention that as well.
Tuesday, February 26, 2013
Kudos to Jinkx Monsoon. Boo to the queens who didn't know who Little Edie was.
On the latest episode of RuPaul's Drag Race, the lovely -- and narcoleptic -- Ms Jinkx Monsoon was getting ready with the rest of the queens for this year's edition of the Snatch Game, where each queen dresses up as various celebrities and characters. Well, Ms Monsoon decided to perform her own homage to the kookiest of all high- (and low-) society dames, Little Edie Beale, of the famed Grey Gardens.
Now in my book, if you're a gay man and don't know who Little Edie is, then that is unfortunate. If you're a drag queen who makes it onto RuPaul's Drag Race and you don't know who she is, then you, my child, are -- if I can appropriate a term -- ovah.
When Jinkx announces her character to the rest of the crew, many of them don't know who she is. Some of the younger (read: inexperienced) queens may be given a little slack for not knowing about Beale, her mother, the Bouvier-Kennedy-Onassis connection, the house, the cats and the raccoons. But for queens like Coco? That's just sad.
Monsoon is genius in the game, throwing shade in ways that goes right over some of those ladies' heads.
Gawker has video of the episode, or you can watch the whole thing on OUTtv. And really, you should watch the whole thing.
Tuesday, February 26, 2013
It doesn't matter if you call him Aladdin Sane, Ziggy Stardust or just David Bowie. What matters is that he's back.
Bowie has a new album coming out, entitled The Next Day, due to be released on March 12. Today, however, marks the release of his latest single, "The Stars (Are Out Tonight)." Bowie has teamed up once again with Canadian photographer/director Floria Sigismondi for the video, which features one of the grandest dames of them all (and former Derek Jarman muse), Tilda Swinton.
Check out the video below.
Monday, February 25, 2013
This edition of The Reading List is all about sexual health.
- If you haven't had the chance, check out Xtra's recent coverage on sexual health issues. Nancy Irwin wrote a great piece on the rise of syphilis amongst men who have sex with men.
- Andrea Houston reports on the rise of STI infections in large urban centres in Ontario.
- Over at The Atlantic, Alice Dreger, a professor of clinical medical humanities and bioethics at Northwestern University's Feinberg School of Medicine, looks at a recent report by the United Nations looking to repeal health practices such as "genital normalizing therapies" for individuals born with genitals that are sexually atypical. Read it.
- And if you're interested in healthcare practices and issues, prideHealth is holding a Trans* Community Forum next week. In partnership with the Canadian Professional Association for Transgender Health (CPATH), prideHealth is hosting a discussion on ways to expand access to healthcare for the trans community. The event happens March 6 in the Parker Reception Room at the IWK. For more information, contact prideHealth at 902-473-1433 or email@example.com.
Tuesday, February 19, 2013
A group in Portland, Oregon, is looking to do some good in a most unusual -- but highly effective -- way.
With the program In a Bind,
Portland's TransActive has created a community education and donation program whereby they collect funds for binders for individuals who cannot afford them, as well as previously and gently used binders to redistribute amongst the community.
This is a great idea, one which would be lovely to see happen in a place like Atlantic Canada.
Monday, February 18, 2013
When I was 14, I had a friend who played me what was, at that point, the craziest record I had ever heard.
It was called "Touch Me," a single by Yoko Ono and The Plastic Ono Band. Jangly guitars and syncopated beats rang out of the speaker, and Yoko's voice soared over them, a screaming thing unlike anything I had ever heard before.
I giggled, a little. I didn't know how else to react.
But I didn't laugh for long. The more I listened to her, the more I started to feel like here was someone who did things her own way and who wanted to say things in a way that was true to her. I bought albums like Season of Glass and Fly. And when I would meet people who liked her, it was like sharing a secret. A secret that we knew the goods about, that other people just didn't get.
Ono's career has followed many interesting waves. A tribute album to her came out in the mid-'80s, and the early 2000s saw a large interest in her recordings as remixes and collaborations of her old records were released by such artists as The Pet Shop Boys and Peaches.
In 2004, Ono even rereleased her song "Every Man Has a Woman Who Loves Him" as "Every Man Has a Man Who Loves Him" and "Every Woman Has a Woman Who Loves Her" in support of same-sex marriage.
And so today, on her 80th birthday, Down East would like to wish Yoko Ono a happy birthday and to extend thanks to her for doing what she does best: being open and honest in being herself.
Thursday, February 14, 2013
Recently, Halifax's Spring Garden Library was host to a discussion about Pink Triangle Day.
The talk, which was presented by Robin Metcalfe and organized by NSRAP, took place on Tuesday, Feb 12. Metcalfe was instrumental in the recognition of this day, and his talk presented not only the history of Pink Triangle Day -- and its Haligonian connection -- but also about the history of the use of the symbol.
For those of you who were unable to attend the talk, local queer website Gay Halifax recently posted Metcalfe's talk on their website. You can listen to it here.
Thursday, February 14, 2013
If you thought 2012 was a good year for bounce MC Big Freedia, you ain't seen nothin' yet.
After a big North American tour, including stops in Toronto and Montreal (but no Halifax, womp womp), Freedia was recently featured in a documentary on Pitchfork called The Queen Diva, and bounce music was recently featured in a great piece in The Atlantic. The mini-documentary discusses the large queer bent found in bounce.
After pulling out tracks like "Excuse" and "Y'all Get Back Now," Freedia is back with "Feelin' Myself," a barrage on the dancefloor.
Take a gander.
Wednesday, February 13, 2013
Halifax Public Library's Spring Garden Road branch has been making a joyful and gay noise all month.
The library is playing host to an exhibit detailing the history of Halifax Pride all month long. It was commissioned as a "look back" at how a protest march in 1988 became a festival over a quarter century.
This Friday at noon, exhibit designer and GLBTQ activist Chris Aucoin will be presenting a guided talk about the exhibit.
For more info, check out the Facebook event page.
Errata: The original version of this post noted that the discussion would take place today, Thursday the 14th. Down East regrets this error.