Wednesday, April 30, 2014

Kickstarter Project: Do I Sound Gay?


I saw this over on Andrew Sullivan's site today.

I think this caught my attention because I've always been self-conscious about my own speaking voice. Doing a radio show for over two years helped me grow accustomed to hearing my voice, but watching the pitch video for this project, I'm aware of many of the same dynamics explored in the film project regarding gay men and our voices.

From the Kickstarter project page:

Confession: I’ve always been self-conscious about "sounding gay." It’s one of the main things that “gives me away” as gay. Three years ago, I decided I’d had enough. I knew that my anxiety came from my internalized homophobia telling me: Gay = bad, so sounding gay = bad. So, I decided to make DO I SOUND GAY?

In the tradition of funny-but-serious first-person movies like Supersize Me, Roger and Me and Good Hair, you’ll follow me as I encounter a colorful cast of linguists, historians, voice coaches, speech therapists, friends, family, and total strangers on the street, gay and non-gay, who share their wisdom and touching, funny stories about the “gay voice.”

You'll also hear intimate confessions and hilarious anecdotes from LGBT icons - Margaret Cho, Tim Gunn, Don Lemon, Dan Savage, David Sedaris and George Takei - as they open up about the "gay voice." Thanks to all the incredible people I met, I was able to embrace my authentic voice.

Click here for more info or to contribute.



Family Feud: Which of the 7 dwarfs describes your wife in bed?


There is ONE answer that either men could have taken... But the clip is funny, no matter.



Syfy orders Sharknado 3 for 2015

Ian Ziering in the upcoming "Sharknado: The Second One"
Syfy is feeling very good about the upcoming Sharknado sequel.

The network has ordered Sharknado 3, before the second installment in the franchise even airs. The threequel will air in summer 2015.

The first Sharknado film turned Beverly Hills 90210 hunk Ian Ziering into a full-fledged chainsaw wielding action hero.  He returns in the sequel, along with Tara Reid, Vivica A. Fox, Andy Dick and Mark McGrath.

The original Sharknado, which premiered on Syfy in 2013 about a freak "man-eating-shark-laced hurricane" hitting Los Angeles, was a pop culture phenomenon.  The Twitterverse practically exploded the night the film originally aired.  Subsequent re-airings gave way to even higher ratings.

Sharknado: The Second One, which was filmed in New York City, will premiere on July 30.

(source)

80s Aerobic Dance Battle


I'm not sure how exactly this "sells" a Ford Mustang.

I will say my favorite part of the whole video is the crowd and judges. The bopping of heads, the waving in unison... Good times.



(h/t JMG)

Tom Hardy undresses for you

Hottie hunk Tom Hardy undresses to shirtless for you
Via Boy Culture
Regular readers may have noticed I've developed a new celeb "crush."

Handsome, woofy, and talented.

Tom's latest movie, Locke, has just been released in the US.

In reviewing the film, Variety called it "An exceptional one-man show for Tom Hardy, this ingeniously executed study in cinematic minimalism has depth, beauty and poise."

And now, back to Tom undressing for us...

GQ Magazine upsets the tea people


The tea-baggers think this means GQ is calling them racists.

Let's think on that, shall we?  Who watches Fox News?

There.  That wasn't hard.

Bravo, GQ.

Obamacare beneficiary who resisted signing up now says it "probably saved my life"

Dean Angstadt, left, with Bob Leinhauser (Photo courtesy of Bob Leinhauser)
What happens when you ONLY watch FOX News?

Dean Angstadt needed life-saving heart valve surgery but didn't have insurance. He refused to sign up for Obamacare because, since he only watched FOX News he'd only heard bad things about the policy.

Finally a friend pulled an intervention and forced him to sign up for a health insurance policy - a Silver Blue Cross PPO policy that costs him $26.11 a month. The policy took effect just before he had heart surgery.

From the Washington Post:

But what accounts for Angstadt’s resistance to Obamacare in the first place? He says that he “leans” Republican and essentially listened to what the GOP had to say about Obamacare, and not so much to what the Democrats had to say. As for his media diet, Anstadt says he goes online for some of his news, but when it comes to television, “Fox News, of course, and that’s basically what I watch on TV,” in addition to local news, he says. “I like some of those radicals” on Fox News, he says. “I like O’Reilly.”

Asked if Fox News had molded his view of Obamacare, Angstadt responded, “Yeah, yeah — they get people fired up. You know what, I really do have a different outlook on it. It’s really wrong that people are making it into a political thing. To me, it is a life-and-death thing.” Of Obamacare’s namesake, Angstadt says, “I didn’t care for Obama. I can’t say nothing bad about him now because it was his plan that probably saved my life.”

There you have it folks. You can watch FOX News and prepare to die, as Dean Angstadt did, or you can look around and listen to other folks. It just might save your life.

Christians angry over Sarah Palin's "water-boarding/baptizing" comments


In a speech Saturday to the National Rifle Association, former half-term governor of Alaska, Sarah Palin, said that "if I were in charge, they would know that water-boarding is how we baptize terrorists."

Now, Faithful America, a large online community of Christians, has launched an effort to publicly denounce former Republican vice presidential nominee Sarah Palin after she mocked one of the religion’s most important rituals by comparing it to waterboarding:

For Christians, torture is not a joke or a political punchline, but a ghastly reminder of the suffering of Jesus upon the cross. By equating it with Holy Baptism -- the act by which we are united with Christ in his death and resurrection -- Sarah Palin is blasphemously twisting our faith into a weapon of hatred and violence. No media outlet should cover her remarks without reporting on how sincere Christians of all theological and political persuasions are appalled.

You can check out the petition here.  The original goal was 15,000 signatures.  It's now exceeded 42,000.

Faithful America isn't the only Christian group to speak out.

“Gov. Palin was attempting to appeal to the basest political populism (nothing in her remarks could be construed as genuinely conservative) by claiming that current U.S. counterterrorism policy is overly-tolerant and empathetic toward our enemies,” Joe Carter of The Gospel Coalition wrote. “Unfortunately, what Palin is proposing is a mixture of pagan ethics and civil deistic religion.”

Read more at Raw Story.


David Geffen interested in buying LA Clippers

Entertainment mogul David Geffen may buy the  L.A. Clippers if NBA Commissioner Adam Silver forces a sale of the team, the L.A. Times reports:

"If the Clippers become available he would be interested in buying the franchise," his office said via email, adding that Geffen was not available to elaborate.

Geffen, with a net worth that Forbes estimates at $6.2 billion, reportedly tried to buy at least a controlling stake in the Clippers in 2010 but was rebuffed by owner Donald Sterling.

Silver fined owner Donald Sterling $2.5 million today and banned him from the NBA for life over racist remarks that surfaced over the weekend.

Tennessee wedding venue changes policy to be truly inclusive


I recently reported about a couple of US veterans who were told they could not have their commitment ceremony at Tennessee's Mint Springs Farm. After originally booking the ceremony, Mint Springs Farm told the couple that it was against state law to host a same-sex ceremony.

Apparently the venue has rethought their policy. Via press release:

As the owners of Mint Springs Farm, we have had time to regroup and reflect. We have reached out to the community and started a dialogue with Tennessee Equality Project. The Executive Director, Chris Sanders, was able to meet with us.

In order to move forward, we have decided to change our policy. We will offer commitment ceremonies for any future couples that have a legal license from other states or countries. We also want to broaden this offer to include couples who simply want a commitment ceremony with no intention of obtaining a legal marriage license. This will be our policy moving forward, and it will remain true to all future prospective clients.

Tuesday, April 29, 2014

Baby elephant figures out how to get off a log


Apparently the baby elephant was stuck on the log for about five minutes. This daring move happened in the last thirty seconds.

Uber-cute.


Stories you might have missed - April 29, 2014

From documentary "Club King"

Stories you might have missed...

• Filmmaker Jon Bush's Club King, a documentary on nightlife impresario Mario Diaz, will premiere at the Miami Gay and Lesbian Film Festival on May 8.

• Marriage equality could bring $15 million to Utah's economy

• Dolly Parton thinks gays should be able to marry and "suffer like the rest of us" if they want to

• Oscar winner/legend Shirley MacLaine sings Janis Joplin with Darren Criss on GLEE

Boy Culture heads to an autograph convention with some of your favorite actors from bygone days. Check out how they look today - Costas Mandylor, Shirley Jones, Cloris Leachman, Andrew Stevens, Sean Patrick Flanery and more...

• Uber Driver fired for refusing ride to gay people

Glenn Beck: "Hillary Clinton will be having sex with a woman on the White House Desk"


Glenn Beck says that Hillary Clinton will announce she is a lesbian if she thinks it will help her get elected.

Says Beck: “I’m telling you, I’m telling you, Hillary Clinton will be having sex with a woman on the, on the White House desk if it becomes popular. She will be. She’ll be like, ‘Look, the arc of history wasn’t ready for a president to be a lesbian and have sex on the desk.’”


US Department of Education says Title IX protects transgender students from discrimination


The U.S. Department of Education today issued new guidance that makes it clear that Title IX law protects transgender students from discrimination.

An excerpt:
Title IX’s sex discrimination prohibition extends to claims of discrimination based on gender identity or failure to conform to stereotypical notions of masculinity or femininity and OCR accepts such complaints for investigation.

Similarly, the actual or perceived sexual orientation or gender identity of the parties does not change a school’s obligations. Indeed, lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) youth report high rates of sexual harassment and sexual violence.

A school should investigate and resolve allegations of sexual violence regarding LGBT students using the same procedures and standards that it uses in all complaints involving sexual violence.

The fact that incidents of sexual violence may be accompanied by anti-gay comments or be partly based on a student’s actual or perceived sexual orientation does not relieve a school of its obligation under Title IX to investigate and remedy those instances of sexual violence.

The ACLU issued this statement:

"This guidance is crystal clear and leaves no room for uncertainty on the part of schools regarding their legal obligation to protect transgender students from discrimination," said Ian Thompson, ACLU legislative representative.

"The Office for Civil Rights must now take the next step and issue comprehensive guidance on Title IX and transgender students."

The guidance released today builds on numerous court decisions and a landmark ruling from the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission establishing that transgender people are protected under existing prohibitions on sex discrimination.

Nearly 80 percent of transgender students report experiencing harassment as a result of their gender identity at school, according to the National Gay and Lesbian Task Force.

(source)

One minute video: Underwater Dogs


I would TOTALLY have a seal for a pet. If I could...

Turns out they are not only friendly, but they like a good belly rub.





(via Towleroad)

New Music: Coldplay "A Sky Full of Stars"


The second single from Coldplay's upcoming album Ghost Stories, out 19 May 2014. 

Pre-order the album now from iTunes at http://smarturl.it/ghoststories.


LA Clippers owner Donald Sterling banned for life from NBA

Posted on the LA Clippers website today

From USA Today: Denouncing Los Angeles Clippers owner Donald Sterling's racist comments in strong language, NBA Commissioner Adam Silver announced the league has banned Sterling for life and fined him $2.5 million.

"The central findings of the investigation are that the man whose voice is on the recordings ... is Mr. Sterling and that the hateful feelings are those of Mr. Sterling. The views expressed by Mr. Sterling are deeply disturbing and alarming," Silver said during a news conference Tuesday.

"As for Mr. Sterling's ownership interest in the Clippers," Silver said. "I will urge the board of governors to force a sale of the team and will do everything in my power to ensure that happens."

Silver said he made the decision to ban Sterling Tuesday morning and that he will begin immediately the process of trying to get Sterling to sell the team.

"This has been a painful moment for all members of the NBA family," Silver said.

Sliver said he didn't poll the owners, but did speak to several who he said supports the decision.

"The owners have the authority subject to three-quarters vote, to remove him as owner," Silver said.

Michigan: Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals denies state "en banc" hearing on marriage equality ruling


Last month, U.S. District Judge Bernard Friedman declared Michigan's gay-marriage ban unconstitutional, which led to 300 same-sex couples across the state getting married within 24 hours of his ruling.

Within a matter of days, the federal appeals court put Friedman's decision on hold on March 22 following a request by the state.

Michigan Attorney General Bill Schuette petitioned for the appeal to be heard “en banc” — which means a full bench of judges — instead of the standard three-judge panel, but the 6th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals has denied that request.

Apparently, the court determined Monday evening that no judge “favored” the suggestion and denied the petition.

According to court documents, Schuette filed the petition April 4 and argued that the validity of the state constitutional marriage amendments is an issue of “exceptional importance” and one that should be resolved swiftly and before a full bench.

While Michigan Gov. Rick Snyder conceded that the marriages performed during that window of opportunity were legal, he has also stated the state will not recognize those unions while the case is on appeal.

(source)

"Camp Camp 2014" - the summer camp for LGBT adults


Summer camp for adult LGBT folks.  I can see a BIG market for this. 

From the Camp Camp website:

Since 1997, ‘Camp’ Camp – America’s premier summer camp for GLBT adults – has offered a fun and distinctive vacation for the gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender community.

Structured just like the sleep-away summer camp that you remember from when you were young(er), Camp offers a full program of great outdoor, athletic, and arts & crafts activities along with a variety of entertaining evening social events.

Located in scenic southwestern Maine, ‘Camp’ Camp is the perfect alternative vacation for adventurous members of the GLBT community looking for a unique vacation option beyond the usual gay cruise or resort.

Our Campers say ‘Camp’ Camp is the best time ever – and who are we to disagree?!

www.CampCamp.com


New Music: Rixton "Me and My Broken Heart"


Fresh off their live performance last night on The Voice, British Pop/Rock/R&B band Rixton announce their upcoming May tour of select cities kicking off May 13th in Los Angeles, with three shows in Las Vegas before wrapping up on May 28th in NYC.

Rixton made their US debut with the release of their Me And My Broken Heart EP out now. The band is set to perform the title track first single on the TODAY Show live from Rockefeller Center on May 28th, while the song has already cracked the Top 40 chart coming in at #15 and continues to climb also ranking as the # 1 Most Shazzamed new track this week in the US.

MTV has named Rixton as a 2014 “Artist To Watch” and recently premiered the “Me And My Broken Heart” music video worldwide.

Current tour dates:

05/13/14 - Los Angeles, CA The Roxy (Sold Out )
05/23/14 - Las Vegas, NV The Cosmopolitan – The Book and Stage
05/24/14 - Las Vegas, NV The Cosmopolitan – The Book and Stage
05/25/14 - Las Vegas, NV The Cosmopolitan – The Book and Stage
05/28/14 - New York, NY The Studio at Webster Hall (Sold Out)

More info on the guys at www.RixtonBand.com

Colorado: Same-sex marriage support continues to rise


A new poll by Quinnipiac shows support for marriage equality is still on the rise in Colorado.

From Politico:

On the issue of same-sex marriage, 61 percent of voters support allowing same-sex couples to marry in the state and 33 percent are opposed.

Democrats support same-sex marriage in the state 85 to 12 percent, while Republicans are opposed 58 to 34 percent.

The Quinnipiac poll was conducted April 15 to 21 and surveyed 1,298 registered Colorado voters. It has a margin of error of plus or minus 2.7 percentage points.

The bolding above is mine.

It's important to note that the survey size - 1,298 - is substantial for a statewide poll. These numbers exceed the national average which puts current support at 55-58% depending on the poll.

Currently, there are two lawsuits in Colorado pushing for marriage equality.

Tom Hardy says he's wearing Elton John's clothes as prep for biopic "Rocketman"


"When I play a real person, I like to have bits of them. Since I can’t take physical body parts and sever those, I try and grab as much ‘kit’ off them as possible… Then you can sell it on eBay.”
Tom Hardy, who’ll play Elton John in the forthcoming biopic Rocketman, discussing how he gets in character with the New York Post

Sorry, couldn't find a pic of Tom Hardy wearing any of Elton's clothes - so I thought this would work.

:)

(from Queerty)

Tennessee: Two Iraq war veterans told to take commitment ceremony elsewhere


US veterans Anthony Wilfert and Brian Blas of Nolensville, Tenn., say Mint Springs Farm, which makes a point on it's website to say it is “an all-inclusive venue,” agreed to host their commitment ceremony.

Unfortunately, days later the owner rescinded the agreement, reports WSMV-TV.

“I made it clear from the get-go that it was a same-sex ceremony,” said Wilfert. “He explicitly made it clear that it was not an issue, that they would host that type of ceremony.”

Wilfert and Blas said days after two employees told them it’d be fine to hold their ceremony at the venue, they got an e-mail from an owner at Mint Springs Farm reading, “Unfortunately, until same sex marriage is legal in the state of Tennessee, we cannot participate in this ceremony at our venue. I wish we could help, I truly do, but our hands are tied in this situation.”

“It is a private venue,” said Wilfert. “We purposefully chose a place that is not tied to a religious organization for that reason, so to mention something about state law is baffling.”

Wilfert also added, “To have fought in the military for freedoms and liberties of all Americans, it can be quite deflating to come back to fight a whole new set of obstacles."

What is of interest to me is that the ceremony was NOT being described as a "marriage." The couple was very clear it was a "commitment ceremony" which carries no legal weight. Commitment ceremonies are not illegal in Tennessee. So, what is really the issue here?

(via LGBTQ Nation)

WSMV Channel 4

Donald Sterling is a registered Republican


Over the past several days of the Donald Sterling debacle,  some pundits have made a point of saying that Sterling is a Democrat.  Not sure why it matters, but to some it's been important to assign that label.

Many in the interwebs have been quick to assert that Sterling is a Democrat for some reason.

And yet, it turns out Sterling has been a registered Republican since 1998.

Sometimes it seems there are no surprises left in life...

2014 Tony Award nominations announced


The 2014 Tony Award nominations were announced this morning. Congratulations to all.

Of note - out playwrights Harvey Fierstein and Terrance McNally were nominated in the Best Play category (Casa Valentina and Mothers and Sons, respectively).  And Neil Patrick Harris appears to be one of the few designated "front runners" in a category with his nomination for his nod in Hedwig and the Angry Inch.
Don't miss the awards ceremony June 8th on CBS hosted by Hugh Jackman.
 Full list of nominees below:
Best Play
Act One
All the Way
Casa Valentina
Mothers and Sons
Outside Mullingar
Best Musical
After Midnight
Aladdin
Beautiful
A Gentleman's Guide to Love and Murder
Best Revival of a Play
The Cripple of Inishmaan
The Glass Menagerie
A Raisin in the Sun
Twelfth Night
Best Revival of a Musical
Hedwig and the Angry Inch
Les Miserables
Violet
Best Book of a Musical
Aladdin- Chad Beguelin
Beautiful- The Carole King Musical - Douglas McGrath
Bullets Over Broadway- Woody Allen
A Gentleman's Guide to Love & Murder - Robert L. Freedman
Best Direction of a Play
Tim Carroll, Twelfth Night
Michael Grandage, The Cripple of Inishmaan
Kenny Leon, A Raisin in the Sun
John Tiffany, The Glass Menagerie
Best Direction of a Musical
Warren Carlyle, After Midnight
Michael Mayer, Hedwig and the Angry Inch
Leigh Silverman, Violet
Darko Tresnjak, A Gentleman's Guide to Love & Murder
Best Book of a Musical
Aladdin- Chad Beguelin
Beautiful - The Carole King Musical - Douglas McGrath
Bullets Over Broadway- Woody Allen
A Gentleman's Guide to Love & Murder- Robert L. Freedman
Best Original Score (Music and/or Lyrics) Written for the Theatre
Aladdin- Music: Alan Menken, Lyrics: Howard Ashman, Tim Rice and Chad Beguelin
The Bridges of Madison County- Music & Lyrics: Jason Robert Brown
A Gentleman's Guide to Love & Murder- Music: Steven Lutvak, Lyrics: Robert L. Freedman & Steven Lutvak
If/Then- Music: Tom Kitt, Lyrics: Brian Yorkey
Best Performance by an Actor in a Leading Role in a Play
Samuel Barnett, Twelfth Night
Bryan Cranston, All The Way
Chris O'Dowd, Of Mice and Men
Mark Rylance, Richard III
Tony Shalhoub, Act One
Best Performance by an Actress in a Leading Role in a Play
Tyne Daly, Mothers and Sons
LaTanya Richardson Jackson, A Raisin in the Sun
Cherry Jones, The Glass Menagerie
Audra McDonald, Lady Day at Emerson's Bar & Grill
Estelle Parsons, The Velocity of Autumn
Best Performance by an Actor in a Leading Role in a Musical
Neil Patrick Harris, Hedwig and the Angry Inch
Ramin Karimloo, LES MISERABLES
Andy Karl, Rocky
Jefferson Mays, A Gentleman's Guide to Love & Murder
Bryce Pinkham, A Gentleman's Guide to Love & Murder
Best Performance by an Actress in a Leading Role in a Musical
Mary Bridget Davies, A Night with Janis Joplin
Sutton Foster, Violet
Idina Menzel, If/Then
Jessie Mueller, Beautiful - The Carole King Musical
Kelli O'Hara, The Bridges of Madison County
Best Performance by an Actor in a Featured Role in a Play
Reed Birney, Casa Valentina
Paul Chahidi, Twelfth Night
Stephen Fry, Twelfth Night
Mark Rylance, Twelfth Night
Brian J. Smith, The Glass Menagerie
Best Performance by an Actress in a Featured Role in a Play
Sarah Greene, The Cripple of Inishmaan
Celia Keenan-Bolger, The Glass Menagerie
Sophie Okonedo, A Raisin in the Sun
Anika Noni Rose, A Raisin in the Sun
Mare Winningham, Casa Valentina
Best Performance by an Actor in a Featured Role in a Musical
Danny Burstein, Cabaret
Nick Cordero, Bullets Over Broadway
Joshua Henry, Violet
James Monroe Iglehart, Aladdin
Jarrod Spector, Beautiful - The Carole King Musical
Best Performance by an Actress in a Featured Role in a Musical
Linda Emond, Cabaret
Lena Hall, Hedwig and the Angry Inch
Anika Larsen, Beautiful - The Carole King Musical
Adriane Lenox, After Midnight
Lauren Worsham, A Gentleman's Guide to Love & Murder
Best Scenic Design of a Play
Beowulf Boritt, Act One
Bob Crowley, The Glass Menagerie
Es Devlin, Machinal
Christopher Oram, The Cripple of Inishmaan
Best Scenic Design of a Musical
Christopher Barreca, Rocky
Julian Crouch, Hedwig and the Angry Inch
Alexander Dodge, A Gentleman's Guide to Love & Murder
Santo Loquasto, Bullets Over Broadway
Best Costume Design of a Play
Jane Greenwood, Act One
Michael Krass, Machinal
Rita Ryack, Casa Valentina
Jenny Tiramani, Twelfth Night
Best Costume Design of a Musical
Linda Cho, A Gentleman's Guide to Love & Murder
William Ivey Long, Bullets Over Broadway
Arianne Phillips, Hedwig and the Angry Inch
Isabel Toledo, After Midnight
Best Lighting Design of a Play
Paule Constable, The Cripple of Inishmaan
Jane Cox, Machinal
Natasha Katz, The Glass Menagerie
Japhy Weideman, Of Mice and Men
Best Lighting Design of a Musical
Kevin Adams, Hedwig and the Angry Inch
Christopher Akerlind, Rocky
Howell Binkley, After Midnight
Donald Holder, The Bridges of Madison County
Best Sound Design of a Play
Alex Baranowski, The Cripple of Inishmaan
Steve Canyon Kennedy, Lady Day at Emerson's Bar & Grill
Dan Moses Schreier, Act One
Matt Tierney, Machinal
Best Sound Design of a Musical
Peter Hylenski, After Midnight
Tim O'Heir, Hedwig and the Angry Inch
Mick Potter, LES MISERABLES
Brian Ronan, Beautiful - The Carole King Musical
Best Direction of a Play
Tim Carroll, Twelfth Night
Michael Grandage, The Cripple of Inishmaan
Kenny Leon, A Raisin in the Sun
John Tiffany, The Glass Menagerie
Best Direction of a Musical
Warren Carlyle, After Midnight
Michael Mayer, Hedwig and the Angry Inch
Leigh Silverman, Violet
Darko Tresnjak, A Gentleman's Guide to Love & Murder
Best Choreography
Warren Carlyle, After Midnight
Steven Hoggett & Kelly Devine, Rocky
Casey Nicholaw, Aladdin
Susan Stroman, Bullets Over Broadway
Best Orchestrations
Doug Besterman, Bullets Over Broadway
Jason Robert Brown, The Bridges of Madison County
Steve Sidwell, Beautiful - The Carole King Musical
Jonathan Tunick, A Gentleman's Guide to Love & Murder
Recipients of Awards and Honors in Non-competitive Categories
Special Tony Award for Lifetime Achievement in the Theatre -Jane Greenwood
Regional Theatre Award - Signature Theatre, New York, N.Y.
Isabelle Stevenson Award - Rosie O'Donnell
Tony Honors for Excellence in the Theatre - Joseph P. Benincasa, Joan Marcus, Charlotte Wilcox
Tony Nominations by Production
A Gentleman's Guide to Love & Murder - 10
Hedwig and the Angry Inch - 8
After Midnight - 7
Beautiful - The Carole King Musical - 7
The Glass Menagerie - 7
Twelfth Night - 7
Bullets Over Broadway - 6
The Cripple of Inishmaan - 6
Act One - 5
Aladdin - 5
A Raisin in the Sun - 5
The Bridges of Madison County - 4
Casa Valentina - 4
Machinal - 4
Rocky - 4
Violet - 4
LES MISERABLES - 3
All The Way - 2
Cabaret - 2
If/Then - 2
Lady Day at Emerson's Bar & Grill - 2
Mothers and Sons - 2
Of Mice and Men - 2
A Night with Janis Joplin - 1
Outside Mullingar - 1
Richard III - 1
The Velocity of Autumn - 1

Monday, April 28, 2014

No gays allowed at Kentucky printing shop


Herald Embroidery in Oak Grove, Kentucky produces customized apparel, ad banners, and other promotional materials.

So it looks like as long as you are a bearded Christian packing heat, you are welcome in their store, but gays are definitely not. From an online review posted last week:

My wife and I went into this shop to get shirts for my parent's anniversary. We went in holding hands and the clerks gave us dirty looks the entire time. We didn't understand why; maybe they thought we were suspicious?

I confronted one of the employees and they directed me to a sticker in the window. It had a pride flag on it and it basically meant gays weren't welcome.

My wife and I were heartbroken; we just wanted shirts made! But we wasted a trip for nothing. Guess we'll get our shirts online next time. So sad about this treatment.

At the very least, gay customers know their dollars aren't welcomed there.

There are no statewide protections for gays or lesbians in Kentucky.

(from JoeMyGod)

Joke of the day: Be Strong


A man escapes from a prison where he’s been locked up for 15 years.

He breaks into a house and inside, he finds a young couple in bed.

He ties him to a chair. While tying the wife to the bed, the convict gets on top of her, kisses her neck, then gets up and goes into the bathroom.

While he’s in there, the husband whispers over to his wife, “Listen, this guy is an escaped convict. Look at his clothes! He’s probably spent a lot of time in jail and hasn’t seen a woman in years. I saw how he kissed your neck. If he wants sex, don’t resist, don’t complain. Do whatever he tells you. Satisfy him no matter how much he nauseates you. This guy is obviously very dangerous. If he gets angry, he’ll kill us both. Be strong, honey. I love you!”

She responds: “He wasn’t kissing my neck. He was whispering in my ear. He told me that he’s gay, thinks you’re cute, and asked if we had any Vaseline. I told him it was in the bathroom. Be strong honey. I love you, too.”

(via Facebook)

LA Clippers lose almost all sponsors over owner Donald Sterling's alleged racist comments

LA Clippers Donald Sterling
The fallout continues and gets worse for LA Clippers owner Donald Sterling as his corporate sponsors are now fleeing the ship quickly. From ESPN:

The Chumash Casino, the presenting sponsor of the Los Angeles Clippers, jumped ship Monday along with used car dealership chain CarMax and airline Virgin America as advertisers pondered their partnerships with the team in the wake of racist remarks allegedly made by owner Donald Sterling.

Virgin America said in a statement that it was cutting ties with the team "while we continue to support the fans and the players." State Farm, Kia Motors America, Red Bull, Lumber Liquidators and Sprint have condemned the remarks and said they will suspend their sponsorship and advertising obligations, closely monitor the situation and assess their options.

The statements attributed to Sterling have caused a firestorm in the sports world. Over a nine minute recording obtained by TMZ, Sterling apparently made several racist comments like the following:

"It bothers me a lot that you want to broadcast that you're associating with black people. Do you have to?" the man believed to be Sterling says. He continues, "You can sleep with [black people]. You can bring them in. You can do whatever you want. The little I ask you is not to promote it on that ... and not to bring them to my games."

At this point in time, only Corona is still listed as a sponsor for the Clippers.

In related news, Sterling apparently contacted his ex-girlfriend V. Stiviano asking "How can we make this thing go away?"  According to TMZ, she apparently has over 100 hours of recorded conversation with Sterling which, one imagines, could be very damaging to his career and fortune.

Pic of the day


Check the headline under the news anchor.
Via Twitter friend D. Russo - follow him here.  Funny guy.

Live TV version of GREASE in development by FOX


Following in the footsteps of NBC’s Sound of Music Live, Fox announced Monday that it is staging a three-hour production of the iconic musical to air in 2015.

From Variety:

Fox has added a three-hour live production of “Grease” to its 2015 calendar, Fox Chairman of Entertainment Kevin Reilly announced today.

Currently titled “Grease Live,” this production of the iconic Warren Casey and Jim Jacobs musical about 1950s high schoolers will feature an as-yet-to-be-named young ensemble cast.

Paramount released the 1978 feature rendition of “Grease,” which starred John Travolta and Olivia Newton-John, and still controls the TV rights. The studio last year relaunched its TV production operation and has said that mining the library for remakes is a key priority.

Here's the press release from FOX:

Get ready to do the hand jive as FOX enrolls at Rydell High with GREASE LIVE (working title), a LIVE three-hour production of the massively popular crossover musical “Grease,” it was announced today by Kevin Reilly, Chairman of Entertainment, Fox Broadcasting Company (FOX); and Paramount Television. Scheduled to air LIVE during 2015 and featuring a young ensemble cast, GREASE LIVE (wt) will reintroduce the great music and timeless story to an entirely new generation.

Based on the 1971 Broadway musical of the same name with book, lyrics and music by the legendary team of Warren Casey and Jim Jacobs, the 1978 hit film “Grease,” starring John Travolta and Olivia Newton-John, grossed nearly $400 million worldwide, making it the highest-grossing movie musical ever.

“From Broadway to film, and across generations, ‘Grease’ is one of the most beloved musical stories ever told – and we can't wait to bring it to our air in a spectacular live event,” said Shana C. Waterman, Senior Vice President of Event Series for FOX. “Its iconic characters and addictive songs make it the perfect fit for FOX, and we’re going to give it the kind of star power and production quality to make every Sandy, Danny, Rizzo and Kenickie out there want to get up and sing along.”

“It’s incredibly exciting to have one of our first major network productions be based on this universally celebrated Paramount title, and we’re thrilled to be partnering with Kevin, Joe and Shana on this epic television event,” said Amy Powell, President, Paramount TV. “FOX's passion for engaging audiences with bold storytelling and live musical formats make it a perfect home for this special broadcast.”

GREASE LIVE will electrify television audiences everywhere with live performances of the unforgettable Casey/Jacobs songs “Summer Nights,” “Greased Lightnin’” and “We Go Together”; as well as the iconic songs written by John Farrar, “Hopelessly Devoted to You” and ”You’re the One That I Want.” The broadcast will reimagine some of the story's most memorable moments and characters from the T-Birds and Pink Ladies, including DANNY ZUKO, RIZZO and SANDY.

Monday Morning Music: "Love Shack" The B-52s


This came into my mind this morning and had to hear it.

From the B-52s 1989 album Cosmic Thing, it was the band's biggest hit. It was the band's first song to reach the Billboard Top 40, and it hit the #3 spot on the Billboard Hot 100. Internationally, it was #2 in the UK and #1 in Australia for 8 weeks.

The song was apparently inspired by a cabin in Georgia where the band wrote "Rock Lobster" for their first album.

If you look, you can see superstar RuPaul dancing in the video.

The video for the song received an award from MTV as the Best Group Video, and was named the Best Single of 1989 by Rolling Stone.

Dare you to sit still while you listen.





Pet Shop Boys give a "behind the scenes" look at the preparations for their current tour


Really excellent "behind the scenes" view of Pet Shop Boys' Electric Tour brought to you by Vevo Tour Exposed.

So many elements that take long-lead advance work and development - costuming, lighting, programming instruments - it's huge. As the guys say in the clip, moving one song from one position on the set list can mean hours of reprogramming. Interesting view into what it takes to create these concert experiences. Plus great video of the concert itself.



(h/t Towleroad)

United Church of Christ challenges North Carolina's ban on marriage equality for denying religious freedoms





Here's a great approach to the marriage equality fight.


The United Church of Christ, twelve clergy members and several gay couples are challenging North Carolina's ban on same-sex marriage on the grounds that it violates their religious freedoms:

From the Washington Blade:

The lawsuit — which was filed in U.S. District Court for the Western District of North Carolina — argues the marriage amendment violates the religious beliefs of denominations and congregants who support the recognition of gay nuptials and clergy who want to perform them. Rev. Geoffrey A. Black, president of the United Church of Christ, and Rev. Nancy Kraft of Holy Trinity Lutheran Church in Charlotte are among the plaintiffs who attended a Charlotte press conference.

“As a senior minister, I am often asked to perform marriage ceremonies for same-sex couples in my congregation,” said Rev. Joe Hoffman (pictured) of First Congregational United Church of Christ in Asheville, who is a plaintiff along with Diane Ansley and Cathy McGaughey, two of his congregants who have been together for 14 years. “My denomination — the United Church of Christ — authorizes me to perform these ceremonies, but Amendment One denies my religious freedom by prohibiting me from exercising this right.”

Bolding is mine.

Get ready for the haters' head to explode in 3, 2, 1...

AmericaBlog's John Aravosis on when it is and is not ok to be a bigoted businessman

John Aravosis, writing for his AmericaBlog on the hypocrisy of when America decides to "tolerate the intolerant:"

"It was only a few weeks ago that America was lecturing the gay community about its intolerance for intolerance, for objecting to a bigot (in fact, an anti-gay activist, Brendan Eich) running a major American corporation (in this case, the Mozilla Foundation).

"Republicans, including gay conservatives, were particularly upset that anyone would judge a man’s job performance, especially the man running a company, by his personal animus towards minorities, many of whom would be his own employees. So long as he didn’t discriminate against his own employees, he was free to be a bigot, they told us.

"Now, they’re all eating crow. Today, even conservatives are saying (on CNN) that the NBA simply must investigate whether the owner of the Los Angeles Clippers basketball team, Donald Sterling, made racist remarks to his girlfriend, who is black and Mexican.

"Apparently, Donald Sterling made the mistake of buying a basketball team rather than taking over a high-tech company.

"No one is running to Donald Sterling’s defense (though Cliven Bundy, another forgotten “free speech hero,” has yet to weigh in). No one is defending America’s “proud tradition” of defending the employment prospects of avowed racists. Nor should they. And even if, as Sterling alleges, the audio is a fake, America’s reaction to the audio was authentic, and universally critical."

(h/t JMG)

Woman dies in car crash seconds after posting "Happy" message on Facebook


In High Point, North Carolina, investigators say that moments before a fatal car crash, the driver posted a message on Facebook read: “The happy song makes me HAPPY!”

“The Facebook text happened at 8:33 a.m. We got the call on the wreck at 8:34 a.m.,” explains Lt. Chris Weisner, with the High Point Police Department.

Watch the report below. And DON'T PLAY ON YOUR PHONE WHILE DRIVING.

Marriage News Watch - April 28, 2014


From the American Federation for Equal Rights:

• The National Organization for Marriage is scrambling to defend Oregon's marriage ban at the last minute, but things aren't exactly going how they'd hoped.
• The case to overturn Virginia's marriage ban gets a boost from one of the authors of the state's constitution.
• The Governor of Pennsylvania wants to skip a trial on marriage and go straight to a ruling.


Sunday, April 27, 2014

Anti-gay Bryan Fischer: "Gay activists are like leeches"


Virulently anti-gay Bryan Fischer of the American Family Association:

"The point here is that with the homosexual lobby, you cannot ever give them enough. Don't even try. There's no point in making concessions. There's no point in capitulating. There's no point in yielding to their demands. There's no point in offering them some kind of appeasement in the hopes that they will leave you alone, that they will leave you in peace. It won't work."


(via Right Wing Watch)

LA Clippers players wear jerseys inside out in protest of owner's alleged racist remarks


According to  Sports Illustrated, Los Angeles Clippers players threw down their warmups center court today to reveal shirts turned inside out when they took the court for Game 4 of their playoff series against the Golden State Warriors.

Tweet of the day


In reference to the current scandal involving LA Clippers owner Donald Sterling.

Fabulous.

Shirtless Royal Marines featured in charity calendar

Shirltess Royal Marines show their stuff for charity calendar

Being late April, it's possible you already have your 2014 calendar on the wall.

However, there's always room for one more daily dose of hunkiness.

The soldiers of the Royal Marines offering features a black-and-white photo shoot by prize-winning photographer Emily Nolan with the ripped soldiers in various states of undress for a charity calendar celebrating 350 years of the Royal Marines.

All for a good cause!  Funds raised by sales of the calendar will go towards goals such as childcare and sports facilities for the RM as well as educational grants, among other projects. The 2013 edition raised over £120,000.

The calendar costs just £5 and can be purchased through Go Commando's online store.


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