QVegas “Sexiest of Gay Vegas” Awards

qvegaslogo

Last night I had a great time at the QVegas “Sexiest of Gay Vegas” Awards held at Charlie’s here in Las Vegas, and sponsored by QVEGAS Magazine.

Las Vegas has had strong support of it’s LGBT community for over 30 years by QVegas Magazine. Not only is the print version of the magazine an essential guide to LGBT life in Las Vegas, but the magazine and it’s staff coordinate major LGBT events throughout the year to support and encourage pride and involvement of our community.

This year’s winners of the “Sexiest of Gay Vegas” included Ryan Lyons (from Le Reve at The Wynn) for “Sexiest Abs”, Chris Saldana (news anchor for KLAS-TV) for “Sexiest TV Personality” and Josh Strickland (from Holly’s World” on TV and “Peepshow” here in Las Vegas) for “Sexiest Showboy” among 25 categories.

Hawaii State House to consider Civil Unions bill

The Capitol building in Hawaii

From the AP: Hawaii’s House Judiciary Committee will consider a civil unions bill during a Tuesday public hearing, the Associated Press reports.

The bill being considered is almost identical to the one passed last year in Hawaii but died on the desk of then Governor Linda Lingle. The new Governor – Neil Abercrombie – has indicated that he would sign civil unions legislation.

Legislation is limited, to some degree at this time, as in 1998 an amendment to the state Constitution was passed limiting marriage to heterosexual couples. The bill currently being considered would give many but not all of the same rights of marriage to same sex couples.

A similar bill was passed by the State Senate of Hawaii last month.

Maryland Lt. Gov. Supports Marriage Equality

Maryland Lt. Gov. Anthony Brown told the Washington Blade Wednesday that he supports marriage equality for lesbians and gays and favors the approval of a same-sex marriage bill pending in the Maryland Legislature.

“I have always believed that all Marylanders should have an equality of rights and responsibilities and that includes marriage equality,” he said to the Washington Blade.

“So regardless of gender, we should be able to choose who it is that we are going to marry and hopefully spend the rest of our lives with. And so I’m supportive of that,” he said.

Brown said he has friends and acquaintances who are in same-sex relationships and he has seen first-hand how they are “successfully raising children,” a development that has helped shape his views on the marriage issue.

The Governor of Maryland, Martin O’Malley has said in previous statements that he intends to sign marriage equality legislation should it reach his desk.

Happy belated birthday Elaine Stritch… everybody rise!

Not sure where my original post went that I did yesterday to celebrate the incredible Elaine Stritch’s birthday… But here it is again.

I love unique, one of a kind performers. And Elaine is certainly in that class. Those people that are unlike anyone else in the world. That’s one reason why I’m never all that up to date on pop music today. All the big artists today start to sound the same to me. And it just isn’t my thing most of the time.

I have had such an long relationship with this song, and Elaine’s performance on the Original Broadway Cast recording. I think at the age of 8 or 9, I somehow was given an album of “great songs from Broadway” (imagine that? someone clearly saw tap shoes and a sense of fashion in my future).

Anyway, I remember listening to “Ladies Who Lunch” over and over and over again even at that age. Something, the imagery of ladies wearing hats, going to the theater, having cocktails in the middle of the afternoon – from the perspective of one woman’s sophisticated grit and drop-dead cynicism – was mesmerizing to me. The juxtaposition of the smooth, cool bossa nova accompaniment matched with Elaine’s edge and cutting sarcasm was clearly theatrical to me, even at that age.

Even at the age of 8 or 9, in Fort Worth Texas, I had a sense of this world – these ladies in airy, fake garden, faux-chic lunch spots. Women dressing up, being on committees, going to country clubs even though no one really played golf or tennis. “Rushing to their classes in optical art, wishing it would pass.” Going shopping in department stores that looked like what we saw on TV – with hats that no one ever bought displayed elegantly and mannequins displaying reserved, frozen, laissez faire “hands and wrists flipped up” poses.

I think my perspective and connection was heightened somehow by the fact that my own mother had died a few years before, so I was really watching and observing women that I “knew” but really didn’t know. It was like watching a show. It all seemed cool and glamorous in some way, but even at my young age I remember the sense of detachment. The world was spinning past them, and so many were trying to just keep up.

It sounds sad, but I love the feeling I get when I think of those days. It’s part of the movie in the mind of a then young man. And this song was the soundtrack to many scenes. Here’s to the ladies who lunch.

And to Elaine. Everybody rise.

Chippendales Man of the Month – Juan DeAngelo!

I’m a big fan of The Chippendales. My husband works with them, and I always have a great time when I go to the theater with him here in Las Vegas.

The show is so much more than what it used to be in the 80s – this ain’t your mama’s Chippendales kids. Live singers, live musicians, the whole show is a “production show” onstage. It’s not the “strip and tip” kind of thing it was back in the 80s.

I love to watch the show from the back of the theatre (the show is at The Rio Resort & Casino here in Las Vegas, and The Chippendales have their own $10 million theater and lounge facility). Watching women have a great time and let their hair down is amazing. It’s good clean adult fun, and not all that raunchy. The one thing I hear people say over and over again when they come to the show is “this is NOT what I thought it would be.”

Also, although the show is marketed to women, men are welcome in the audience. Every night there are married couples in the audience, or some gay men coming with their female BFFs. It’s really a fun time. If you haven’t been, make a point of seeing it when you come to Vegas.

For more on The Chipps – here’s their Facebook page:  www.facebook.com/chippendales

Now let’s hear it for Juan!

Maryland GOP State Senator to support Marriage Equality

In an inspiring moment of clarity on behalf of Senate Minority Leader Allan H. Kittleman, he has announced his plans to support marriage equality in Maryland.

Kittleman had originally meant to present a bill to create civil unions in Maryland. But finding no support for that bill among his GOP colleagues, he found himself in a position of having to choose between his conscience or politics. His conscience won out.

“Consequently, with the civil union legislation no longer being a viable option, I was put in the position of deciding whether to support same-sex marriage or voting to continue the prohibition against same-sex marriage. As a strong proponent of personal and economic liberty/freedom, I simply could not, in good conscience, vote against SB 116.”

“First, let me state that I am a strong follower of Jesus Christ. I worked in youth ministries for many years. However, while my faith may teach that marriage is between a man and a woman, our government is not a theocracy. As the state senator from District 9, I represent everyone in my district, regardless of their faith.”

Wrong Direction?

chart 020510 update

So I got to thinking about those people who say the country is headed in the “wrong direction.”

And then I looked up a few facts – you know, those often inconvenient things…

In the last two years since the end of the last administration, we’ve gone from losing 700,000 jobs a month the first few months after Bush left, to slowly but surely adding private sector jobs.  Check out the shape of the graph below.  Which direction do you think is the right one?

The Dow Jones Industrial Average was 6,547 on March 9, 2009 – before any of Obama’s policies could come into effect. It closed today over 12,041.  Again, check out the direction.

On top of all this, corporations are announcing record earnings.  Someone out there is making money, kids.

Though this wasn’t Obama’s economic crisis, it is his economic recovery.

The only thing that HASN’T happened is after the wealthiest top 2% – having had tax cuts for years – are not spending any of that money to create jobs. We kept hearing “lower taxes creates jobs.” Well, the tax cuts implemented in 2001, 2003 and extended in the lame duck session have been in effect for a long time. Where are the jobs?

Or is it possible that the wealthy are taking their tax cuts and just pocketing the money while they squeeze more productivity out of fewer and fewer employees? When are those who are supposed to create jobs going to actually create them?

Trouble right here in Sin City…

A special counsel has been named to investigate Senator John Ensign of Nevada regarding payments made to his former mistress and her husband.

The timing of this preliminary stage doesn’t bode well for Ensign, who has said he plans on running for a third term. With this investigation starting now, it could well be in high gear just in time for election season 2012.

More from CNN here.

Groundhogs Day

It’s been feeling more like the movie “Groundhogs Day” than the actual day this past month.

Egypt continues to be in turmoil, health care reform is still being debated, Mitt Romney is still running for President (for, what, four years now?) and Sarah Palin is still smug and snarky…

The good news is: Punxsutawney Phil didn’t see his shadow this morning – since the biggest snow storm ever is happening again and again. Here’s to an early Spring, kids.

Zach Wahls – a new American hero

Prepared to be knocked out by Zach Wahls, a 19 year old University of Iowa student.

Zach spoke at the public forum debating the House Joint Resolution 6, which would strip away marriage equality in Iowa. Zach clearly makes his two moms proud. America should be proud to see someone speak so clearly, confidently and securely about who he is, who his family is and what a family really is.

I’m really proud to post this. Remember the name Zach Wahls. We all should.

Now sit back, watch and listen for 3 minutes. THIS is what the future of America can look like. Congratulations to Zach’s moms. Good job.