The Watermark, Vol. 1, No. 3, September 28, 1994

Dublin Core

Title

The Watermark, Vol. 1, No. 3, September 28, 1994

Alternative Title

Watermark, Vol. 1, No. 3

Subject

Gay culture--United States

Description

The third issue of The Watermark was published on September 28, 1994 and continued to focus on family-orientated LGBTQ+ (Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Trans, Queer/Questioning, and others) issues. The front page was dedicated to two articles, one about the rapidly increasing gay marriage movement, and the other focusing on National Coming Out Day. The third page included a half page obituary for Charles W. Hummer III, who died of AIDS of September 19, 2016. The paper continued to publish more national stories this time including, New York’s push to include "significant others" on insurance benefits, the limitations put on lesbian mothers in Utah, and a dental discrimination case in Texas. The paper also continues to discuss discrimination in schools that had started in the previous issue.

Since 1994, The Watermark has been the cornerstone source of LGBTQ+ centered news for the Central Florida region. Founded by Tom Dyer in Orlando, the publication began generating bi-weekly issues beginning August 31, 1994. Since then, The Watermark has consistently published newspaper-style issues every other Thursday. Gaining traction, the publication expanded in 1995 to include Tampa and, in 1997, The Watermark became a permanent piece of LGBTQ+ culture when the publication initiated the first large-scale Gay Days Weekend event, the Beach Ball at Disney’s Typhoon Lagoon. Before 1999, the publication printed 20,000 copies every week, distributing them to over 500 locations between its two major cities. Following 1999, the publication launched watermarkonline.com shifting to an online publication style. In 2016, Rick Claggett purchased The Watermark.

Creator

Dyer, Tom
Fowler, G. K.
Gustetter, April L.
Kilgore, Michael C.
Kundis, Ken
Maines, Ted
O'Lay, Lola
Schultz, Toscas, Dimitri
Nan
Williams, R.M.

Source

Original 24-page newspaper: The Watermark, Vol. 1, No. 3, September 28, 1994: Publications Collection, GLBT History Museum of Central Florida, Orlando, Florida.

Publisher

Date Created

ca. 1994-09-28

Date Copyrighted

1994-09-28

Date Issued

1994-09-28

Is Format Of

Digital reproduction of original 24-page newspaper: The Watermark, Vol. 1, No. 3, September 28, 1994.

Is Part Of

The Watermark Collection, RICHES of Central Florida.

Format

application/pdf

Medium

24-page newspaper

Language

eng

Type

Text

Coverage

Orlando, Florida
Salt Lake City, Utah
Atlanta, Georgia
Albany, New York
Minneapolis, Minnesota
Houston, Texas
Miami, Florida
Hilton Walt Disney World Village, Orlando, Florida

Accrual Method

Donation

Mediator

History Teacher

Provenance

Originally published by Watermark Media.

Rights Holder

Copyright to this resource is held by Watermark Publishing Group and is provided here by RICHES of Central Florida for educational purposes only.

Curator

Smith, Robert
Cepero, Laura

Digital Collection

External Reference

"About/Contact." WatermarkOnline.com, accessed July 11, 2016. http://www.watermarkonline.com/aboutcontact/.

Transcript

FLORIDA' S DISTINCTIVE CAY AND LESBIAN PUBLICATION.
VOLUME 1, NUMBER 3 SEPTEMBER 28,1994
SOMETHI
SOMETH!
NG OLD,
NGNEW
THE BOOM IN GAY MARRIAGE
by G. K. Fowler
Carol Bartsch met Kim Newton at a nightspot “and yes, it was love at first sight. We had just met and it was amazing how many people came up to us that night and made comments
like ‘how long have you two been together?’” Within six weeks they were sure of their feelings and within a few months had moved in together “to build our lives.” Last August, after ten years of successful partnership, they exchanged formal vows.
Carol is a cool and intelligible community activist, but she describes her wedding like a bom romantic. “It was perfect. My perfect day.” She and Kim had long celebrated the night they met as a private occasion (“it seemed unlikely we would ever have a wedding anniversary,”) and gradually decided on formal commitment for their tenth. “We wanted it all. We wanted a full ceremony to affirm our relationship and share the feelings we have for each other with our families and friends.
“And there was another reason. I was raised thinking in terms of falling in love and getting married. Finally it just seemed like something we should not be denied because we were lesbians, something in life we didn’t want to feel we’d missed out bn. I’d like to see it become legal of course, but in the meantime I wasn’t going to waste my life waiting. In the meantime, while we’re still young and so much in love, why not marry?”
Bemie LaTour was an occasional customer at the upscale Orlando store Eric Boyd manages. Interest wasn’t lacking, but they had no occasion to speak until Bemie managed a third-party introduction. Conversation led to dating and dating to romance.
A few months later Bemie let slip the word “love” while speaking of other things. Sly Bemie. Eric nearly missed it. “You know,” he says, “he wasn’t going to say anything in order to see if I’d caught it. And I said ‘wait a minute, just stop. Stop the truck! What did you say?”’ Cornered,
Kim Newton (left) and Carol Bartsch: “Something we should not be denied.”
Continued Page 8
THE COMING OF NATIONAL
COMING OUT
BAY
For more than a decade, Rob Eichberg has been one of a handful of activists standing at the forefron* of the gay rights movement. Through his books, speaking engagements and television appearances, Rob has passionately carried the
about your life. Live powerfully* not fully. Come out of the closet.
Those who saw him in Orlando last spring, when he addressed the Metropolitan Business Association, know that he is a brilliant communicator, sincere, intelligent, charismatic, and inspiring as only true believers can be. But Rob’s greatest value to the gay community may be as an “idea person,*’ He is one of those rafb people capable of creating a grand vision and then making it happen. National Coming Out Day may be his best idea, his best vision so far.
Celebrated each October 11 since 1988, National Coming Out Day is when millions of lesbians and gay men recognise how important it is that we share our lives with our families, friends and co-workers. That we not hide. That we put a face on gay and lesbian experience.
“Ultimately, visibility is the key to the success of our movement,” says Eichberg. “Studies show that those who know agay or lesbian person support our issues 70% of the time. Bo what do we need to do? We need to make sure that everyone knows a lesbian or gay man, and die way to do that is to come out.”
Eichberg acknowledges that the idea for a celebration associated with coming out was not his alone. But the need became apparent to him when he md Advocate magazine editor David Goodstein founded “The Advocate Experience” in 1976. “The idea behind The Experience was to empower lesbians and gay men , to function lovingly and openly with
Continued Page 20
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WATERMARK / September 28,1994 3
LOCAL & STATE NEWS
CHARLES “CHUCK” W. HUMMER III
Orlando lost a rare and bright light when Charles “Chuck” W. Hummer III succumbed to AIDS on September 19. Volunteer, activist, and friend to many, Chuck brought enthusiasm and energy to each of his many projects and relationships. He had a rare ability to be diligent and responsible.. .a force to be reckoned with.. .while also outrageous and childlike. Chuck truly had gifts to give; the love in his heart and the twinkle in his eye. With a sturdy shoulder, a disarming wink and an off-color joke, Chuck helped many, many people through difficult times.
Chuck Hummer was the first and only Executive Director of the Hope & Help Center of Central Florida. He first joined Hope & Help in 1988, when the agency was formed to provide support services to those affected by the HIV disease. Chuck started as a volunteer, subsequently became the first paid
1962 -1994
staff member, and ultimately oversaw expansion to a present staff of 23.
As a person living with HIV, Chuck had to overcome many of the obstacles facing people with AIDS: job discrimination, access to medical treatment, loss of health insurance. His positive attitude toward life and living with AIDS, stressing living rather than dying, was indelibly woven into the fabric of Hope & Help.
Chuck advocated a holistic approach to life and health, believing that care of the body was inextricably tied to mental and spiritual health. Chuck was active in drug studies and HIV related research at the National Institutes of Health (NIH) in Bethesda, Maryland since 1988. This involvement increased his medical awareness and understanding of HIV Disease.
Over the years, Chuck was instrumental
in assisting clients to enroll in drug studies at NIH. Currently, 32 local clients participate in NIH studies and are able to network with other clients by sharing the most current medical information. The availability of otherwise unreleased treatment protocols motivated his strong and continuing participation in the NIH research effort. He was deeply committed to finding effective treatments for HIV/AIDS.
In addition to his administrative role at Hope & Help, Chuck actively supported outreach efforts to the community at large. He lectured in Hope & Help’s unique teen peer education program, in the risk reduction distribution program, and the general population outreach program.
Chuck was born in the Republic of Panama, where he lived and went to school. He moved to the United States with his parents in 1979. He was a student activist in high school, and a thespian since his first appearance on stage at age 7. A graduate of Balboa High School in the Panama Canal Zone, he attended Canal Zone College and then Northern Virginia Community College. He received his Bachelors degree in International Studies from the American University in Washington D.C. in 1985, and was seeking a Masters Degree at Rollins College.
Chuck is survived by his mother, Greta N. Hummer, of Reston, Virginia; his father and stepmother, Charles W. Hummer, Jr. and Sandra Hummer, of Haines City, Florida; his longtime companion, Mark Steffy, of Davenport, Florida; and step-grandmothers, Sarita Chiari de Selee, of Panama City, Panama, and L. Phyllis Hummer, of Pinellas Park, Florida.
For those who may wish, a donation may be made in Chuck’s name to the Hope & Help Center of Central Florida, 1935 Woodcrest Dr., Winter Park, Florida 32792.
SUE YORK, LOCAL LESBIAN ACTIVIST: 1943 - 1994
Sue York, a lesbian activist and Central Florida resident, died on September 15, 1994. She was 51 years old.
According to friend Barb Fallon, York was a soft-spoken woman with an unwavering belief in human dignity and equal rights for all. She was involved in the civil rights struggle in the south during the ’60s, and has long worked for equal rights for lesbians, gay men and bisexuals in both Orlando and Daytona Beach.
York offered her wealth of experience to
the LCN Express, a monthly newspaper with a large and devoted readership among Central Florida’s lesbian community. At LCN she served as editor, contributing writer, and in the words of Fallon, “continual inspiration.” Fallon adds, “I remember during the March on Washington, when all of us were tired and weary, Sue let us know with just her smile that everything was going to be alright.. .both that day and afterward.”
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WATERMARK / September 28, 1994 4
NATIONAL & INTERNATIONAL NEWS
LESBIAN ALLOWED ONE VISIT WITH CHILD OF FORMER PARTNER
SALT LAKE CITY (AP) - A lesbian seeking the right to have regular visitation with the child of her former partner has been granted a single, two-hour visit next weekend while the matter remains under consideration. The visit was granted by 3rd District Judge Leslie Lewis.
The plaintiff, identified in court only as A.I., has not seen the 4-year-old boy of her former partner, C.D., since July. “I’m ecstatic right now,” A.I., 43, said Monday. C.D., 27, did not comment.
Witnesses said A.I. was present at the boy’s birth, shared daily duties such as bathing and clothing him, helped give him asthma treatments and took time off work when he needed medical attention. They said she helped support C.D. and her family.
The defense contends the woman’s role was like that of a baby sitter and that the court did not have the right to grant visitation.
STATE PATROL ASSIGNED TO GEORGIA POLITICIAN AFTER GAY HARASSMENT
ATLANTA (AP) - Republican Lt. Governor nominee Nancy Shaefer recieved a State Patrol bodyguard after complaining about harassing phone calls from gays and lesbians.
Public Safety Commissioner Sid Miles said that the harassment was serious enough to warrant protection even though there had been no threats of bodily harm from any specific group. “We decided it would be in her best interest to assign someone to her,” Miles said. The extra security will continue through the Nov. 8 election.
“I’m sorry we have to do something such as this,” Schaefer said. The 59-year-old candidate said she, her husband and campaign workers have received harassing calls in recent weeks. She said several callers telephoned the Doubletree Hotel on Friday and threatened a picket by gays and lesbians if Schaefer didn’t cancel a fund-raiser there.
Schaefer has drawn criticism for her statements that heterosexual and homosexual domestic partnerships are illegal and immoral. Her organization, Family Concerns, helped finance a lawsuit challenging city of Atlanta legislation to authorize health benefits for the unmarried partners of city employees. The ordinance was declared unconstitutional by a Fulton County judge.
NEW YORK PLAN OFFERS INSURANCE BENEFITS TO “SIGNIFICANT OTHERS”
ALBANY, N.Y. (AP) - The new year will bring health insurance benefits to the live-in mates of unmarried state prison guards and public university professors who qualify under a new agreement.
The move will make such coverage available to homosexual or heterosexual partners. The deal announced Friday was the result of negotiations between the staff of Gov. Mario Cuomo and two public-sector unions _ United University Professions and Council 82 of the American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees.
Vermont is the only state that currently provides such coverage for domestic partners, but New York City, Rochester and Ithaca do so for city employees. “It’s part of the movement to equalize the way we cover the people who are left out of the system,” said Joseph Bress, director of the state Office of Employee Relations. “We do not feel one set of employees should be deprived of benefits others are entitled to.”
To qualify for the program, which would start on Jan. 1 or soon after, domestic partners must be adults unrelated by blood or marriage, involved in an exclusive and “committed” relationship and living together for six months, and can demonstrate financial interdependence. Bress said partners would be certified through the use of financial documents such as bank accounts and mortgage statements.
Some state workers who would not be affected by the program have questioned the timing of it, saying they believed the governor was seeking votes in November’s election. They claim Cuomo is pandering to downstate gay voters while keeping the issue quiet among the more conservative upstate voters who might be cool to the idea of using government money to cover homosexual couples.
The Public Employees Federation, New York’s second-largest state workers’ union, was also close to signing its own agreement, the Albany’s Times Union reported.
The Civil Service Employees Association is also considering the plan, he said. The unions represent more than 100,000 of the 162,000-member state workforce eligible to apply for domestic partner benefits under the program. Bress said the projected cost for the program ranges from a low of $249,000 to a high of $2.1 million. The latter figure is based on if all unions agreed to the plan.
NATIONAL GAY AND LESBIAN JOURNALISTS’ GROUP MEETS
MINNEAPOLIS (AP) - Four years ago, says Leroy Aarons, most gay journalists were “still in the closet or just peeping their heads out.” Now, the National Lesbian and Gay Journalists Association, which Aarons founded in 1990, has about 1,000 members in news organizations across the country. About 400 of them attended the group’s national conference in Minneapolis, at which U. S. Surgeon General Joycelyn Elders was the featured speaker.
While last year’s gathering was held in New York City, this year, Minneapolis was chosen to help attract journalists from smaller communities, said Aarons, who worked for the Washington Post in the 1960s and 1970s. The theme was “Out on Main Street.” Members compared how gay and lesbian issues are covered in their communities, and also how work environments differ, he said.
Kim Severson, entertainment editor at the Anchorage Daily News in Anchorage, Alaska, a city of about 250,000, formed part of a panel discussion on those differences. She said extra challenges exist in smaller communities, where “issues of gays and lesbians are really hot.” Severson recalled an article she wrote about closeted gays in Alaska state government that caused a local uproar. “If you tried to do a story like that in New York or San Francisco, editors would say, ‘So what?’ ” she said.
Elders addressed homophobia as a public health issue, especially as it relates to gay teenage suicide. The conference agenda included an ethics seminar, a discussion on homophobia in sports with California psychiatrist Dee Mosbacher, a panel on news coverage of health issues and another on the career effects of being openly gay.
Minneapolis Mayor Sharon Sayles Belton gave the welcoming address. Massachusetts Rep. Barney Frank, one of two openly gay members of Congress, addressed a Saturday lunch session, and gay comic Kate Clinton also appeared.
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FLORIDA JURY AWARDS $600,000 TO WOMAN MISDIAGNOSED WITH HIV VIRUS
MIAMI (AP) - Vemelle Lowder gave up her children, moved back to her Georgia hometown and made plans to kill herself after being told she had the HIV virus. It was all a mistake.
A Dade Circuit Court jury has awarded $600,000 to Lowder, 49, for pain and suffering after her 1990 AIDS test was misread. Dr. Homer L. Kirkpatrick, who gave anti-AIDS medication to Lowder, settled for $250,000 on the eve of the trial.
Although AIDS cannot be transmitted by casual contact, Lowder worried about touching her children, now ages 17,19 and 21, her attorney, Steven Mitchel said. She gave legal custody of her children to her mother - who would wash her daughter’s dirty dishes with bleach.
Finally, she returned in October 1992 to her hometown of Waycross in Georgia. At an AIDS hospice clinic in Waycross, she was retested and learned she was HIV-negative.
Lowder went to the Family Health Center in Hialeah for a checkup in November 1990. She decided to be tested for AIDS because she had received a blood transfusion in 1980. After being told she was HIV-positive, Lowder took medication prescribed by Kirkpatrick for several months that made her nauseous and weak, her attorney said.
MAN AWARDED $100,000 IN DENTAL CARE DISCRIMINATION CASE
HOUSTON (AP) - A Houston man who was refused treatment at a dental center after disclosing that he was infected with HIV will receive $100,000 as part of an out-of-court settlement of a discrimination lawsuit.
The U.S. Justice Department said the settlement under the Americans with Disabilities Act is the first of its kind. Last year, the department sued the Castle Dental Center in Houston for violating the act by telling Harrison J. Totten it would no longer treat him.
Totten, 30, said his orthodontic treatment was discontinued in May 1992 when he revealed that he had HIV, the virus that causes AIDS.
“This settlement is more than just a slap on the wrist,” Totten’s attorney John Paul Bamich said. “The message I would like to go out is that if people are going to be intentionally ignorant, we’re going to make it as painful as possible.”
Title III of the Americans with Disabilities Act prohibits discrimination from the offices of health care providers. Testing positive for HIV and having AIDS are disabilities under the act.
The Justice Department became involved in the case when Bamich contacted them after filing a 1993 lawsuit in state court on Totten’s behalf. The suit alleged that Totten went to the center in 1991 to get braces. When he went back in May 1992 to have his teeth cleaned, he was given a form to complete that asked if he had AIDS or had tested HIV-positive.
After writing that he had tested HIV-positive, Totten waited 45 minutes without receiving services and then left. “The word that Harrison Totten was infected with HIV spread around Castle Dental Center. His patient file was conspicuously marked with a red sticker saying ‘AIDS,’” the suit stated.
The following month, Totten called Castle to confirm an appointment and was told he should have received notice that the dental center would not treat him again, Bamich said.
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WATERMARK / September 28,1994 7
BUSINESS
COMPANIES VALUE CULTURAL DIVERSITY
by Ken Kundis
It was a simple act, really. Something that most of his fellow employees at Federal Express did without thought. Ted placed the photograph of his lover on his desk and went about his work, wondering what his new associates would say. To his surprise, they said almost nothing at all.
This simple act of assertiveness fifteen years ago by Ted Maines, now a senior manager at Federal Express, was the beginning of a path that would culminate in his inclusion on Federal Express’ Cultural Diversity steering committee. He discussed not only his positive experiences at Federal Express but also the climate for gays and lesbians in corporate America during a presentation at the Rainbow Democratic Club meeting held, Monday, September 19.
According to Maines, a growing number of companies are adding the words “sexual orientation” to their equal employment opportunity (EEO) statements and offering equal treatment to gays and lesbians. However, most companies in America still do not have written policies protecting the rights of gays and lesbians, and do not offer equal benefits to their gay employees.
The list of companies that do have such protections, however, is impressive. It includes Disney, Microsoft, Lotus Development Corporation, DuPont Chemical, Xerox, Apple Computers, and Chase Manhattan Banks. Maines indicates that these companies and many others are offering fair and equitable treatment to gays and lesbians in one of the following areas.
Inclusion in EEO statement All companies, large and small, have EEO statements - that is, a short proclamation that the company does not discrimination against specified minorities. By adding the words “sexual orientation” to the list of protected minorities, companies can take the first step in protecting the rights of gays and lesbians, Maines said.
“Most important, it makes the policy clear to all the employees of the company that harassment or discrimination of gays and lesbians will not be tolerated,” he said.
A Safe Work Environment Maines defines this environment as a workplace free of homophobia and AIDSphobia. According to Maines, one company that is leading the way in providing such an environment is telecommunications giant AT&T.
“They have instituted a training seminar entitled ‘Homophobia in the Workplace,’ designed to educate middle and upper management as well as hourly employees on the issues associated with homophobia, and how it can negatively influence a workplace,” Maines said.
Another step toward providing a safe workplace is the use of inclusive language in all company communications. An example of this would be to use “significant other” or “partner” instead of “spouse” in corporate communications.
Equitable Benefits Programs
Maines feels that gays and lesbians should be offered equal compensation for equal work. This extends to the disbursement of benefits, particularly regarding domestic partners.
These benefits can include such things as allowing domestic partners to be included on medical and dental plans and allowing fora non-married significant other to receive survivor pensions. However, providing equitable benefits can be something as simple as providing bereavement pay or family leave to domestic partners.
Public Support
Some companies are also publicly lending their names and financial support to gay and lesbian causes. For example, during the referendum in Colorado on prohibiting the protection of civil rights for gays and lesbians, companies such as Apple Computer, Microsoft, US West Telecommunications and Philip Morris wrote letters and contributed money to defeat the initiative.
According to Maines, gay and lesbian employees also have a responsibility in the struggle for equality in the workplace.
“The best thing you can do is come out at work. Put a face on the issue. Don’t allow yourself to be treated like a second class citizen in the workplace,” Maines said.
Also at the meeting:
• Carol Bartsch of the Federal Advocacy Network (FAN), affilialecl with tlie Human Rights Campaign Fund, spoke about the attempt by the American Family Association (AFA) to overturn legislation in Alachua County designed to protect gays and lesbians from discrimination. The AFA, which attempted something similar on a statewide level under a different name last year, has chosen Alachua County to begin again their battle against legal protection of gays and lesbians.
• A videotape of Senate committee hearings regarding ENDA (the Employment Non-Discrimination Act of 1994) was also played for attendees. The act, sponsored by Sen. Edward Kennedy, D-Mass, would prohibit employment discrimination based solely on sexual orientation. The short program also featured the testimony of a gay man and a lesbian who were each discriminated against in their workplace. Thus far, 31 senators and 136 representatives have signed on as co-supporters of ENDA.
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WATERMARK / September 28, 1994 8
COVER STORY
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MARRIAGE
From Page 1
Bemie answered: “it slipped, but I do love you.”
Eric had been in love awhile himself by then, but was wary of raising the issue until he could be “certain, absolutely certain, that Bemie felt the same way. Well...we were both crying.” Last April, after eighteen months of true courtship, they formally committed themselves to each other in Holy Union.
These couples have what most people want: the house where love lives. In marrying, however, they have done something few gay people, until recently, considered possible or even desirable.
In the early 1970’s, when Kim, Carol, Eric and Bemie were kids, the dominant avant-garde of the young gay rights movement were not, to put it mildly, the marrying kind. Michael Sherry, a professor of gay and lesbian studies at northwestern University, interviewed in the June 2, 1994 edition of Chicago’s Windy City Times, characterized their attitude as principled rejection. “The idea of wanting to join the institution of marriage was anathema.
“It wasn’t just a sense that it would be impossible legally or politically, but that you wouldn’t want to do so even if you could, because marriage is at the center of the circle of oppressive institutions. Marriage was seen as oppressive to women, and oppressive to the gay men caught in it.” He might have added that, in the rhetoric of the time, marriage was a central pillar of the culture of hatred oppressing all minorities.
Indeed, formal religion was justly held in contempt as the fountainhead of gay and lesbian persecution. A judge upholding an anti-sodomy law can honestly say “The Bible tells me so” - as indeed many have. In such a context a politically-aware gay couple seeking religious union had all the social cachet of freeborn black abolitionists moving south to make a killing in the slave trade.
Things have clearly changed. Men and women who proudly identify themselves as gay; people who are out to stay, who witness, who march for freedom, nowadays march down the aisle as well. Some, like our newlyweds, even pose in tuxes and gowns for the Wedding Album photos. They speak of marriage as an institution in terms of meaningfulness, completion, and human possibility rather than oppression, exploitation, or conformity. They talk about freedom and happiness - precisely what Gay Lib promised.
How to account for this revolution in sensibility? Of the many factors at play the most potent is doubtless the increasingly public presence of gay men and lesbian women in America’s communities of faith. This presence and the dialogue it necessitates must rank among the most remarkable religious developments of our time.
Chief among the movers and shakers have been The Universal Fellowship of Metropolitan Community Churches (MCC), the Unitarian Church, and the Society of Friends (Quakers). Also significant are the increasingly vocal lay organizations Integrity (Episcopalian) and Dignity (Roman Catholic). The Jewish faith is vocally represented by congregation Beth Chayin Chadashim, the outreach synagogue of Los Angeles, New York’s Congregation Beth Simchat Torah, other affiliates of The World Congress of Gay and Lesbian Jewish Organizations such as Congregation Beth Ahava (Philadelphia) and Congregation B’nai Haskalah (Boston). The United Church of Christ (UCC) also boasts a Lesbian/Gay Coalition. At present, Orlando claims only a few representative organizations. But these are enough to tie us into the mainstream of the Gay Nineties.
Rick Effinger, an activist in the local chapter of Integrity, considers marriage as less a religious than a political issue because of its obvious benefits to individuals and the community. The blessing of a union, he says,
solidifies a relationship. Men and women clearly benefit from the stability and growth long-term relationships provide, and “when you’re talking about two people who are in a loving, caring, mutually-sustaining relationship, the gender of those two people is essentially irrelevant.”
Gay couples can reach the mark, “but it’s very difficult. One of the reasons is that we have so few socially-instituted and recognized, sanctioned events that reinforce relationships in the way such events do for heterosexuals. And that’s crucial for relationships.” According to Effinger, two-person union is a legitimate human goal, perhaps even biologically-determined. In most species, dating (attracting a partner) occurs so that mating (commitment) can occur. It’s lunacy, he says, to expect that homosexuals simply date forever, or would be satisfied doing so. Yet although gay people obviously share with heterosexuals the same biological drives and social needs, they have traditionally been denied the prospect - even the conception - of the dating ritual’s logical outcome.
Personal fulfillment and health issues aside (he is an MD), there is, unavoidably, a theological layer to Effinger’s argument. “The ultimate long-term goal is to have unions because they allow all persons in the community of the faithful full access to all the sacraments. You can’t have groups of people isolated from certain sacraments simply because of human dictate. The idea, from a Christian perspective, is to include everybody. That’s a mandate we have, to include everybody in the arms of God.”
Joe Curtis, Chairman of Dignity Orlando, the Catholic outreach organization, makes the same argument by putting theology first. “In our community in Orlando, couples are married within the Church. Formally married with a priest. We don’t dance a the thing as far as it being a ‘holy union.’ It’s Holy Matrimony. It’s sacramental. It’s their spiritual right. It’s their spiritual inheritance, if you will, from the Church. It’s part of that treasure we’re promised at Baptism.”
Asked whether marriage is, as the Church holds, the only permissible context of sexual activity, he says “We don’t mince words. We advocate matrimony. We say that it is actually the preferred condition for gay couples in the scheme of things. Because people have responsibilities to be in committed relationships. We talk about sex being exploitative and abusive or non-exploitative and honest. Holy Matrimony is the best expression of the fact that two people are giving themselves fully with full commitment to each other... .All people are called to chastity. It’s just as wrong for gay Catholics to screw around as it is for straight Catholics.”
The Church, Curtis says, has the truth. But laws were made for men, not men for laws. He agrees with Effinger that marriage is desirable as much for its human as its sacramental benefits. “Hopefully Holy Matrimony will become common for Gay Catholics...in the next century, probably. Obviously there’s not enough critical mass to have a pre-Cana program [Church-led premarital counseling]...down the road, hopefully, we’ll have something like that. Because those programs have value to couples.
“There’s a great deal of value in having someone think through whether they want to marry. Unfortunately in our community you see quite the opposite.. .and there’s a lot of hurt, broken gays for that reason. While I don’t want to impose a vast structure on the gay community, I think a lot of those mechanisms would be useful.”
Carol Hale, Associate Pastor at Joy Metropolitan Community Church (Joy MCC), performed the Holy Union Service at which Eric and Bemie were joined. She agrees that couples have to look carefully at their reasons before accepting Holy Union. (MCC requires that couples receive pre-Union
Continued Page 9
WATERMARK / September 28,1994 9
COVER STORY
MARRIAGE
From Page 8
counseling.) “One of the first things we ask a couple is ‘why do you want to have a Holy Union?’ If they think it’s going to mend a relationship, they’re in trouble.”
For Rev. Hale, communication is the key. “Are they pretty much set on their goals together? Are they communicating with each other when they’re sitting here? My primary interest is, are they communicating about what they both want from the relationship, long-term.”
“I don’t think that gay relationships are any different than straight relationships ...they’re two people living together who face the same worldly problems that any couple faces. So they’re facing the same stresses - if not more, because of the gay
“Now in my own thinking there are two very legitimate reasons for Holy Union. One is, it offers a very public opportunity for two people to make a commitment to each other. For example, if I discover someone who is special to me and with whom I want to enjoy a long-term relationship, why shouldn’t I make a public proclamation of that? The other reason is, if I discover someone who means this much to me, why not celebrate that? And Holy Union is an opportunity to celebrate what has happened to us.”
In Brock’s mind the absence of secular arrangements reinforces the spiritual meaning of Holy Union. “We affirm that this is a Christian ceremony. Therefore I don’t do a secular ceremony. I don’t just say ‘here are two people who love each other’; what I say is based on the Bible. So it is a reli-
Eric Boyd (left) and Bernie LaTour: “The thing to do.”
and lesbian lifestyle. The dynamics of being gay and lesbian don’t affect the couples so much as the dynamics of family relationship enter into it.”
So she speaks to couples about safe sex, communication, boundaries, and finances - the worldly stresses that destroy relationships. “Have they set the boundaries in the relationship and do they understand where each stands? How do they discuss finances? If they buy property together, how are they going to handle that? How they handle their checkbook...you know, I don’t care how they handle these things, only that they talk about them.”
MCC has been performing Holy Union services since the year of its founding, 1968. The Reverend Jimmy Brock, Pastor of Joy MCC, is very clear about what, exactly, the couples he unites are doing. “I try to make it clear to people in my Holy Unions that we’re not imitating a marriage ceremony. You cannot get married. Marriage in our culture is a secular contract...which requires a marriage license issued by a governmental agency. It’s a secular union. Therefore, since they won’t give you a marriage license, you can’t get married.”
He is equally straightforward when considering the reasons couples unite. “I think there are a lot of wrong reasons for having Holy Unions, and I try to say this in counseling. I think some people have a need to have pious words said over them - and that’s not much of a reason for having a Holy Union. Having a Holy Union is not going to make a relationship better, just as a marriage doesn’t by itself make a relationship better for heterosexuals. It’s not going to be any better the day after the Union than the day before you have it. The relationship depends on you, not on what someone says.”
gious experience for us. And if people don’t want that.. .1 don’t do the ceremony if they don’t want it to be a Christian ceremony. We’re a church, not a social club. We’re dead serious.”
Theological distinctions aside, Effinger, Curtis, Hale and Brock agree with Kim, Carol, Bernie, and Eric that love is what it’s all about and that God likes love.”
God gave me Kim,” Carol says. “God is definitely in our lives. God brought us together. My life has been better, Kim’s life has been better, our families are better, everything is better. God wouldn’t have given us so much goodness in our lives if He didn’t love us.”
And if He didn’t want us to get married, I’m sure He would have found some way to circumvent it. And instead, not only did everything go beautifully, it went beyond beautifully. It was perfect. My perfect day. And all the people at the ceremony, the straight people there, my friends, the family, all of them felt the same thing. It was just a glowing.. .how can I describe it? Everyone was starry-eyed, all loving, even a week later.”
It’s a cliche, but Bernie and Eric are so in love it shows. Even seated across a room from each other they seem joined; the space between them something they own and share. They speak for each other and finish each other’s sentences. Everything they do says This Is What It’s All About. “It’s just become a form of our life to accommodate each other,” Eric says. Of marriage, Bernie says, “It was the important thing to do. When you finally have met that right person, before God, before friends, and to each other, that’s the thing to be done. I think that’s the way it was always supposed to be, but something got lost.”


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WATERMARK / September 28,1994 10
VIEWPOINT
SORT OF
COMING OUT DAY
bj R. M. Williams
I walked by the little gazebo where I was to meet a group of people, all strangers to me. There was a bench nearby hidden by an oak tree, so I sat down to gather my thoughts and watch the strangers furtively. God, how I just wanted to drive away and forget the whole affair. But what would I be running to? The same closed and solitary life I know so well? The same strangling self-pity? I would loathe that decision before my foot ever touched the gas pedal. So I stood up, stomach knotting, and walked to the gazebo. With reddening face - my signature -1 met the supervisor and a few of the members of the Delta Youth Alliance (DYA).
DYA is a group designed for gay, lesbian and bisexual youth, and is but one in what I’ve come to realize is a vast array of support groups and regular social events specifically designed for the homosexual community.
I had come across an advertisement for DYA by chance, and kept it in the bottom of my desk drawer for several months; a concealed symbol of incipient courage. I am not proud to admit the number of times I called the phone number and hung up, but my courage grew a little each time. I was paranoid, to put it mildly, but I spoke and I listened. I learned about Gay and Lesbian Community Services (GLCS). Community? There’s a community? And I began to discover the plethora of opportunities for me to find places where I would belong.
I go to DYA meetings, but why haven’t I embraced more of the programs available? Good question. I suppose my answer is true for a lot of young homosexuals. It’s the double whammy of shame instilled by family and culture, and the universal and ever-present fear of rejection by peers.
Joining DYA, an immense step in my
coming out process, took much thought and, modestly, bravery. This was a first open acknowledgment of my homosexuality. I needn’t tell anyone how frightening that is. But I’m stuck at this first step. Because of my embarrassment or self-esteem issues or whatever, I have not yet experienced the friendship and freedom that the larger gay community offers me. I see it in others, but I am not ready yet. I have learned, however, that I am not alone; this joyful knowledge sustains me for now.
I feel lucky. I stumbled upon the “circuit.” But there are many young and not-so-young homosexuals who have not made this discovery. They have not landed in Oz, and the world for them remains black and white. They will continue their personal battles alone. Some will bare deep scars and, I suspect, some won’t make it. Others may find their own unique formula for individual happiness. But I wish the gay community could rent a big flatbed truck and drive through every neighborhood announcing on loudspeakers, “Here we are! You’re not alone! We’re waiting for you!”
Like many, I grew up in a homophobic family and, like many, I’m afraid of losing my family to gain my freedom. Using the resources I now know are available to me would be evidence of that freedom. I am
afraid. What if someone recognized me going into Out & About Books and then “outted” me? What if I couldn’t find a plausible alibi if I encountered some acquaintance at a gay event? If I fully utilize groups like DYA and GLCS, and places like Out & About, I will have taken a step toward my homosexuality that I can no longer hide in my bottom desk drawer.
Sure, I yearn for companionship and comfortable gay friendships. I want to walk down the street, head held high, with my life-long love. I want to talk with my family about what I really did while I was supposedly at the library. Maybe it is the youthful strength of my mental walls that keeps me from breaking my self-induced chains; that keeps me from embracing the gay community in all its richness.
Ignorant family? Deep rooted shame? Self-esteem? It certainly isn’t lack of opportunity. Perhaps one day I will arrive at a point where self-acceptance means more than acceptance by others. But for now, I hope everyone struggling with their sexual identity could at least know what I know; that a wonderful gay and lesbian culture awaits us. It’s easy to find, and there are wonderful people to welcome you...even if you need to sit on the park bench and watch for a while.
WATERMARK
Watermark Media, Inc.
©1994
editor / publisher Tom Dyer layout / managing editor April Gustetter account executive Keith Peterson contributing writers Michael L. Kilgore, G. K. Fowler, Harmony Brenner, Nan Schultz,
R. A. Bach, Dimitri Toscas,
Jim Crescitelli, Mark Lawhon, Yvonne Vassell, Ken Kundis,
Rafael Gasti, Leslea Newman, Rosanne Sloan, Joe Sarano photographers & illustrators Alison Bechdel, Eric Orner,
Russell Tucker, student contributors Robert Holland, Katie Messmer,
Tera Kenney, Mike Williams
CONTENTS of WATERMARK are protected by federal copyright law and may not be reproduced in whole or part without the permission of the publisher. Unsolicited article submissions will not be returned unless accompanied by a self-addressed, stamped envelope. Although WATERMARK is supported by many fine advertisers, we cannot accept responsibility for claims made by advertisers.
Publication of the name or photograph of any person or organization in articles, advertising, or listing is WATERMARK is not to be construed as any indication of the sexual orientation of such persons or members of such organizations (unless, of course, sexual orientation is stated specifically).
WATERMARK is published every second Wednesday, except the first week in January and the second week in July. Subscription rates are $35.00 (third class).
The official views of WATERMARK are expressed only in editorials. Opinions offered in signed columns, letters and articles are those of the writers and do not necessarily represent the opinions of the newspaper’s owner or management. We reserve the right to edit or reject any material submitted for publication.
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LETTERS
EDITOR
The article in the Watermark of Sept. 14 concerning “good fences/neighbors” is somewhat in error and lacking in coverage of the complete story.
Your unnamed reporter is incorrect when stating that the fence was constructed “in compliance with a legal settlement agreement between the establishments” (the Parliament House and the Full Moon Saloon). The building permit to construct that fence was obtained by the Parliament House and they alone are responsible for its construction.
Patrons of both establishments were quoted as “outraged, calling the action childish and further evidence of divisiveness within the gay community.” They are uninformed - and perhaps the gay media should fill that void...
Jeff Campbell
Editor’s Note:
We apologize for any statements in the “ Fences” article (Issue 1.02) which may be innacurate or misleading. Although spokesmen for the Parliament House and the Full Moon Saloon both indicated that a settlement had been reached over disputed matters, neither party would discuss the nature of the dispute or the settlement. Neither party stated that an agreement had been reached to build a fence. As of September 26, the only building permit presently at or near the fence in question was issued to the Carolina Moon Trailer Park.
letters are snbjeet to | editing for content and ||| leiigtli.:Iyetters should be sent to:
R0. Box 533655 . Orlando, WL 32853-3655
HEADDRESS BALL: She’s got legs...but who noticed?
WATERMARK / September 28,1994 11
VIEWPOINT
THE
RADICAL RIGHT’S SCHOOL DAZE
by Nan Schultz
The most daring experiment of American democracy is under attack. America’s public school system, the first in the world to propose liberal (as in “liberating”) arts education for everyone, is the object of an intense and frighteningly successful campaign to undermine its religious neutrality and its pluralistic outlook. So, what? You’re not a teacher; you don’t have any kids in school, or maybe you do. But still, why should you care about what goes on in the public schools? Because they are the site of the religious right’s most successful campaign against, let’s see, what are they calling it this year...Secular Humanism?... Atheistic Socialism?...New Ageism? Well, it doesn’t matter. They mean you.
According to Janet L. Jones, writing in the American School Board Journal, groups representing the far-right such as the Christian Coalition, Citizens for Excellence in Education, and Focus on the Family are engaged in a “well-orchestrated cultural war for control of the public schools.” As any good propagandist knows, a successful war calls for an easily identifiable and infinitely evil enemy. In their continuing quest for a sufficiently alarming “scourge of the month,” the leaders of the radical right have run the gamut from the New Math to the New Age. But despite the fickle nature of their hatreds, these warriors have consistently trained their sites on the “homosexual lifestyle” as a primary target.
Rest easy, my friends, we may be targets, but we are in good company. Among the individuals and organizations named by various far-right writers as likely to under-
mine the morals of America’s youth are Mother Teresa, Ralph Nader, and the Muppets. And I feel I would be remiss if I did not also warn you that according to some on the radical right, the following practices may lead to your moral downfall: aerobics at the Y, positive thinking, net-
.. .we may be tabut we are in good company... among.. .Mother
Ralph Nade; and the Muppets.
working, and the Save the Whales Movement. And you thought homosexuality was your major problem.
But seriously...very seriously, the success of these groups is alarming, and increasingly gays and lesbians are their focus. According to Jones, programs which emphasize diversity and promote respect for other cultures, “especially if the curriculum includes information on homosexual lifestyles,” are drawing as much heat from the right as those believed to promote satan-ism and witchcraft. A recent example is the Children of the Rainbow curriculum, removed from New York City public schools through the action of the national Christian Coalition and the local Family Defense Council. Most prominently, they cited information on gay and lesbian parents as
morally objectionable material.
The radical right is not large, but it is well-organized, well-funded and immeasurably aided by our ignorance and apathy. If you don’t believe it, consider the following case-in-point.
In December of 1992, a fund-raising letter from Citizens for Excellence in Education (CEE), a group determined to restore its version of Christian values to education, asked its members for money (a measly $15,000!) to “work for legislation to outlaw the teaching of homosexuality/lesbian-ism as a normal lifestyle.” In March of this year, the U.S. House of Representatives passed the “Reauthorization of the 1965 Elementary and Secondary Education Act” (ESEA) with an amendment (proposed by M. Hancock, R-Missouri) that “prohibits educational agencies from using money in the bill to distribute material to students that encourage or support homosexuality as a positive lifestyle.” Not long after, the bill passed the Senate with a similar amendment, sponsored in that body by none other than Jesse Helms (R-North Carolina).
A further amendment allows local school districts to determine the acceptability of
educational programs, which is very good in districts where an educated and alert electorate have put on the school board those with children’s best interests at heart, and very bad in places like our own Lake County where three of five school board members have ties to the Citizens for Excellence in Education.
What can you do? First of all, call your elected officials and let them know that the Helms-Hancock amendment to the Elementary and Secondary Education Act is unacceptable. The bill is currently in conference committee and can be stopped there. Call (202) 224-3121 and speak to your congress-persons, senators, or committee members William Ford (D-Michigan) or Edward Kennedy (D-Massachusetts).
Second, recognize that the radical right is your enemy. They are not going to go away. Their current strategy is local elections, especially low-turnout races like school board and county and city commissions. Inform yourself, particularly regarding these low-level, low-glamour positions.
And by all means, vote.
FEMME
FATALE
by Michael C. Kilgore
One of the best parts of being gay is the opportunity (some might say duty) we have to create and re-create ourselves. Having few positive role models and usually no one to talk with while growing up, when it came to sexual orientation, our inner voices were our main mentors. One result of this isolation is our originality. When it comes to those pivotal decisions in life, both creativity and cussedness is a gay hallmark: how we relate to others, how we express ourselves, and for some of us, most importantly, what we wear.
As a community we have perfected the theater of dress. There is every sort of drag conceivable. From fashion fetishist to radical faery, diesel dyke to lipstick lesbian, leather devotee to fitness freak, conservative suit to screaming drag queen, each of us has a need to create that perfect expression of who we are, or who we would like to be. Sometimes the results are outrageous, sometimes droll, but almost always there is a level of consciousness about the way lesbians and gay men dress that is rarely evidenced in the nongay world. So whenever I encounter a gay brother or sister in some extreme manifestation of dress, I regard their effort with both appreciation and respect, occasionally awe.
One of the best of these creations whom
I’ve encountered recently was Carmella Marcella Garcia, whose show I stumbled into late one night at the now-shuttered Tracks Orlando. A sixty something, but timeless, drag queen, her act was polished in the same way furniture picks up a patina from admiring touches. Having rubbed up against countless audiences, her patter never missed a beat, intuitively going for the jugulars of the obviously self-conscious in the crowd. Unlike many less talented performers, however, her comments were never mean spirited. Her barbs were more like an arrow waiting to fly: the tension released as frequently by turning the remark back on herself as on the hapless bar patron. Her between costume changes go-go boys were squeaky-clean, polished dancers with good choreography. Her costumes were outstanding—a half-century of sewing lessons and deep closets were hot lost on the appreciative audience. Picking up her dollar tips as she moved effortlessly from patron to patron, her show was professional, well-staged and witty: in effect, drag at its outrageous best.
So it was with some surprise that I saw her pause, after receiving one of her tips followed by a whisper. The man who gave her the $20 bill was young, drop dead gorgeous. He was with an older gentleman.
Both had expensive designer clothes. After the tip and the whisper, the young man retreated to his older companion. Raising
the twenty to the crowd she announced, “It’s
.. .someone yelled “Roll, bitch, roll. ”.. .Suddenly, the show had moved from performance to public spectacle.
his birthday, and he’d like to have the audience choose something special for the next number. So what do you want?” Anticipating that people would yell out a favorite lip-sync song, I waited for the first voice. But there were no words. Instead there was a buzz, almost like a generator charging, which became louder until finally someone yelled out, “Roll, bitch, roll.” Others picked up on the phrase, and soon almost everyone had joined in the chant, “Roll, bitch, roll.”
What had happened? Suddenly, the show had moved from performance to public spectacle. But always a trooper, and it was, after all, a twenty, Carmella began a shimmy which ended with a few turns on the floor in her sequined gown. Looking a little ruffled, but none the worse for wear, she started to resume her show, only to have the young man return with yet another bill and whisper. Clutching the new bill in her hand, Carmella stared first at the older man wearing the Versace shirt, and then the bill. Almost inaudibly, she announced to the crowd, “This is almost half a month’s rent. Do you know what this means to an
old drag queen?” The older man nodded at her, and the young man returned with another whisper.
Without knowing the request, the audience tensed. Like piranha swimming through blood, they’d had a taste but now wanted flesh. Carmella, addressing only the older man, said quietly, “You don’t want that. I’m an ugly old bitch. I’m nothing without these clothes.” His response was only a nod. The crowd went wild, “Take it off, take it all off.” Plunging the bill into her bosom, the music shifted, and Carmella began her strip. The crowd chanted and cat-called to the beat of the music. The contract was sealed.
Time took on a freeze frame character as Carmella removed the first layer of her identity. Every nuance of her striptease was captured on the large screen video as the crowd continued to chant. First the dress, then the slip, then the heels, then the bra and underwear, and finally, the long red wig. From the comer of my eye, I noticed the designer duo leaving the room. In front of us stood a flabby, older man with only wisps of gray hair remaining on his balding head. All that remained of Carmella was the red wig covering his genitals, and the flash of green between his breasts. The crowd grew quiet. What now?
Looking at himself on the giant video screen, he announced in a steady, sure voice, “You wanted a freak show, you got a freak show. Not a pretty sight.” And with that he left the stage, leaving the remains of Carmella on the floor behind.
As the audience began to disperse, I sat stunned. What had just happened here? What code had been broken? Why had we been so eager to humiliate one of our own? And who, exactly, were the freaks?
H For Christ’s sake, open your mouths; don’t you people get tired of being stepped on?
u■ ■
T80F
WATERMARK / September 28, 1994 12
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WATERMARK / September 28,1994 13
Theatre Review. by
limitil
flcscas!
SIX
DEGREES ©F
Ain ATiriki
Orlando,^eatmDowhi)^
ing and cbntrovifersial |^ic|igp|;; Most of die time, Ifsjnst plain oP :' “Good Thea^ran^;|i^liWi: :;; of Separation i$no exception. ' This production can be described in ;
(the kandmski^paint&g |b«b^jebb- 'of ;J^;.|i^^||||| p^ihMtai
ordered, and the back is abstwt)»| Director Tim :|l|i||:r|||||||| stirred up a world where reality and illusion run back to back, just like the Kandinski spinning above the. set; On one side the produc-| tion is well ordered and direct, and ; on the reverse Side it’s an abstract collage of lost dreams and values, hidden desires, and terrify ing buj man experience.; |;
Of course, John Guam's script lays out quite an exceptipnal rbad : map for all of this to happen, but Muldrew’s personal vision ocea^
..stonally; succeeds in pushing j Guare’s play even were monients when 1 wished llrr;, a little more time to see both sides
: ally
wrenching. A little more time to ' see the- “backside” of these events ■ wouki bate driven the emotions home.
-^e bpsi stkc^s^tej
ee$ of the evening were consistent %jth, this' two-sided vi$jpi|^e? characters became 1 lying kan-f dinskis.
As Ouisa, the upperclass wife and mother, Peg O’Keef was direct and witty, then desperate and yearning, revealing a woman uncomfortable with who she had
: M. Wegman was pb^ssed Mth : wealth and fame, but also consumed with a desire to be real and creative.
Ill As the unexpected intruder Paul, Jim Braswell was intelligent
. Continued Page 21
Leigh Shannon, Forever Young Florist
Bruce Ground, Gaiy Bailey
Art Grindle, Cameron Matthews, Co-Chair Sam Odom^ Mardi Gras’ King Apollo XVII
Erin Sommers
Commissioner Fran Pignone
Dancer
On Saturday, September 17, over 700 gowned and tuxedoed partiers converged on the Hilton Walt Disney World Village for the Headdress Ball. Fittingly, this year’s Headdress was dedicated to Sam Ewing and Hattie Wolfe for helping make the five-year-old fundraiser for the Hope & Help Center one of the most anticipated events of both gay and straight social seasons. And the most fun. ^
Where else could you join a dazzling array of local luminaries, including Linda Chapin and Fran Pignone (sitting at opposite sides of the room), to watch an amazing display of costumes, pyrotechnics, half-naked dancers and singers...and 99%-naked Stephanie Shippae! The centerpiece (no pun intended) of the event, the Floral Headdress competition,was captured by Greg Brown and B-Wear.
PHOTOS BY RUSSELL TUCKER ♦
Debra Sanders, Co-Chair M. VVhyne Gebhart, Sam Ewing, County Chaiiman Linda Chapin, Hattie Wolfe
Steve Cummings
WATERMARK / September 28,1994 14
ARTFUL LIVING
SPEC'S, OMNI MUSIC AND RECORD HUT
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Fai?tasn?a Productions Presents
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AT THE MOVIES: Caught David O’Russell’s Spanking the Monkey at Enzian during its brief run in Orlando. This low budget film won the Audience Prize at the Sundance Film Festival. Essentially a coming-of-age movie with a twist, Spanking deals with the taboo subject of incest. Newcomers Jeremy Davies and Alberta Watson bring the characters of an MIT student and his bed-ridden mother to life...the audience is simultaneously disturbed and amused by these characters. The outstanding performances of the two leads make this an unforgettable character study that haunts you after you leave the theatre. An impressive debut for director O’Russell.
MUSIC, MUSIC, MUSIC: So often it seems movie soundtracks are nothing more than a compilation of songs you don’t even remember were in the film. Not so with the disturb-ing-as-the-movie soundtrack to Natural Born Killers, Trent Reznor (of Nine Inch Nails fame) produced this CD and, as you might expect from Reznor, it pushes the envelope. Spliced between pieces of dialogue from the film are songs from Leonard Cohen, Bob Dylan, Nine Inch Nails, and Jane’s Addiction. The experience you get from listening to this soundtrack matches the film (if you’re up to reliving it). Track for track/frame by frame.. .a rarity and a gem.
Isn’t it great that CD prices are finally coming down in O-Town? Following the lead of discounters Circuit City and Best Buy, Peaches is actually slashing the prices on their Top Twenty releases to $10.99 (CD) and the unbelievable $6.99 (cassettes). Now we can take some risks and try out some new music.
AND ON VIDEO: Recently rented Rock Hudson's Home Movies. This has got to be the cheesiest piece of trash ever assembled to cannibalize a dead celeb!! First of all, let’s make one thing clear: there are no home movies.. .just clips from his films slapped together in a way to make it SO OBVIOUS HE WAS GAY. Gee-whiz.. .maybe a revelation to someone who spent the 70s and 80s in a coma. This video is so incredibly bad that it verges on camp, but it’s simply too awful to merit even that assignment. The absolutely creepy monotone narration by Eric Farr, the poor film quality, and worse yet, the evidence that the closeted star was nothing more than a once-handsome-but-mediocre actor amounts to an unbearable, unforgivable 90-minute video. One moment worth seeing: when the smarmy narrator from hell bursts into song - singing, yes, I’m not kidding - “I’m Too Sexy”! YUKH

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WATERMARK / September 28,1994 15
IN REVIEW
|yL ME AND MY GIRL
Theatre Review by Dimitri Toscas

Out I went to enjoy an evening at the Civic Theatre, for the MainStage Production of Me and My Girl. I had never heard the music or seen the show before, so my outlook was fresh. Besides, everyone knows Civic’s “Opening-of-the-Season Musical” is traditionally...well...BIG! So, that’s what I expected.
The set was big. Sometimes too big, and too clumsy, and not painted very well, but it still was a rather impressive thing: turning around, and flying in, and rolling on, and opening up. In fact, it was the first thing to really make an impression. But this show can’t revolve around the set, it revolves around a traditional, Musical Theatre subject: love.
A charming, yet crass couple take on the upper class, when Bill Snibson (Roy Alan) discovers he’s heir to royalty. He tries to adapt and gain their approval. The lovers are torn apart. Then, after Bill’s “Girl”, Sally (Gail Bartell) goes through a Pygmalionesque transformation, they gain the acceptance of the upper crust.
Sounds like a familiar formula, right? An easy sell..
Unfortunately, the couple never really bubbled over with the excitement of young love. Oh, don’t get me wrong, Alan and Bartell were adequate centerpieces for this high spirited song-and-dance show. Roy’s physical comedy showed a strong technical agility, as did Gail’s vocal work. Individually, they maintained energy while displaying their theatrical strengths, but they never really came together as a genuinely charming couple, and that’s the basic foun-
dation of this piece.
Even though that fundamental base wasn’t established from the get go, it didn’t stop the charm of this production from shining through. It was found in the great performances of the supporting roles and ensemble.
Key Howard, as the drunk Sir John Tremayne, was astonishingly well grounded. Audrey McMahon’s portrayal of Lady Jaqueline Carstone had the style and sophistication of a high class, 1930’s vamp, with legs for days and a great beige costume in the second act. Gregg Birkhimer seemed more than comfortable as the high class, thinned lipped, nail breaking, almost “ishy” Gerald Bolingbroke, and with only a few brief moments on stage, Hilda Philips, as the eavesdropping, loud screaming Mrs. Brown, developed a character that nearly stopped the show.
But, hands down, one of the funniest moments of the evening came from Jay Schoonover, who caught the audience off guard, as Herbert Parchester. Well deserving of the applause he received in the middle of his musical number, his bouncing, skipping, light-in-the-ol’-loafers routine was quite endearing.
The charm of the show gleams on the faces of this supporting cast and through some big numbers, like “The Lambeth Walk”, but that only made it more obvious that the core relationship of the show was missing.
Director Alan Bruun could have helped the lead couple with some intimate blocking and deeper character development.
Gail Bartell and Roy Alan star in and My Girl
Also, the contrast and tension between classes was not defined well enough to give us a sense of struggle. At moments, like in the Kitchen scene, the servants appeared more refined than the upper class, which more than likely was due to the efforts of choreographer, Paula K. Gale.
A little more balancing may have corrected these fundamental problems, but in the end, Alan’s direction moved the show along at a nice quick pace...until the end, when it came to a screeching halt.
Something snaps at the very end of this production, leaving the audience with a bit
of whiplash. The finale quickly approaches. All the company rushes center stage. Boy gets Girl back. Big climax.
Then, silence.
Big set change. Big costume change. Finally, when all that is done...sing the big showstopper, again.
Sometimes BIG isn’t good. This is one of those times.
Everyone knows what to expect from Civic’s opening productions, but the opener for Civic’s new season came crashing in on itself, right at the last moment, leaving Me and My Girl a bit shy of that tradition.
NEXT ISSUE available October 12;
CAYS AND THE LOCAL MEDIA: why we make them
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WATERMARK / September 28,1994 16
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STREAM OF CONSCIOUSNESS
T The most recent issue of Vanity Fair features an article about Grace Kelly. Flash! She was a human being. She had weight problems. She had a difficult menopause. She had problems with her children. She and the Prince (whom she called “the Dodo”) grew apart. She drank sometimes. And for many years she was the most breathtakingly beautiful woman in the world. Only Audrey Hepburn has since offered the same level of grace, elegance, and class. Think for a second. Can you name anyone today who even compares? Grace Kelly died the same day as Anwar Sadat. A very, very bad day. We wish the Vanity Fair article had more pictures.
▼ Speaking of beauty, have you seen pictures of RuPaul “unmasked”? We wish The Advocate article had fewer pictures.
▼ Whatever movie studio is responsible for It’s Pat, the full-length feature about Julia Sweeney’s androgynous Saturday Night Live character, has decided to pull it before it even opens. And after massive prepublicity. Hope they hadn’t made too many talking “Pat” dolls. Pull the drawstring and it says, “This is my friend Kelly.”
▼ We are sadly underwhelmed by this year’s Broadway Series at Bob Carr. Four, count them, four revivals: Jesus Christ Superstar, Hello, Dolly!, Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat, and Grease. Then there’s Phantom, making the entire series musicals. Sadly underwhelmed.
▼ This new book is being advertised everywhere. Bob and Rod! “A stunning, landmark portrait of love between two men.” Is it somehow different than the many other stunning, landmark portraits of love between Bob and Rod? Is arching angularly off large pieces of driftwood with no clothes on what men in love do? Blech.
▼ Baba Wawa interviewed Babs Bush on television recently. Baba quoted Babs in her new book as saying that A1 Gore was “dogmatic.” Baba then asked Babs what “dogmatic” means. Babs didn’t know. Babs was highly overrated.
▼ Overheard at the Headdress Ball... Erin Somers has been approached about syndication. Big surprise.
▼ Headdress Ball Co-Chair Sam Odom was a little nervous when he found himself seated near County Chair Linda Chapin while the almost naked Stephanie Shippae waxed philosophic about her “titties and dick.” Was Mrs. Chapin amused, or was she “appalled with two p’s?” We think the former. She busted a gut when Stephanie ended her number by declaring that it was time to “go backstage and Free Willy.”
TRANSITS & LUNATIONS
BY MARK LAWHON, MARA
ARIES (Mar 21-Apr 19): Your efforts at work are still being unexpectedly and undeservedly scrutinized. This will pass, but keep a low profile, stay focused, and let the bullshit roll off your back. The New Moon on the 5th may reveal some innovative compromises. Just don’t go too far. If a parent decides to move in with you, be gracious but firm (you can do that, Aries). Don’t get involved in your friends’ messy finances.
TAURUS (Apr 20-May 20): Heaps of energy around family and home. Like too much Prozac, this could lead to agitation; particularly between boys and their Mommies and girls and their Daddies. Its only temporary, so chill ‘cause you’ll never be able to take back those spoken words. Your philosophical and spiritual realignment is well under way. Partnerships require every bit of your limited patience until January, 1995.
GEMINI (May 21-Jun 20): C’mon, make whoopee! Good times are in store as the New Moon trines the Sun. It will pass, but take advantage because in this challenging world, thirty good days are still thirty good days. Double your fun by telling your friends everything - in great detail. They’ll go green. Just don’t loan them any money.
CANCER (Jun 21-Jul 22): There may be war on the homefront early this month...or at least a skirmish. The end result will be positive, so let the bodies fall where they may. If possible, make a Gemini your Secretary of Defense. And remember, war is romantic. Use it. If you’ve been procrastinating on legal or school stuff, now is the time to dive in.
LEO (Jul 23-Aug 22): Phew...it’s hot. All kinds of fire sign action, and it all points to dirt. Real estate. So secure that mortgage. Close that deal. As your realtor has no doubt told you.. .for the last six months.. .NOW is the time to make that dream a reality. There are always glitches, but don’t be dissuaded. Commissions should be earned.
VIRGO (Aug 23-Sep 22): You are the master manipulator. You know it. You can’t help it. But like a good chess player, you must think several moves ahead to avoid negative consequences. A word of advice: sidestep any discussions about who spent what for whose benefit. It’s a trap, and you may be a few moves behind.
LIBRA (Sep 23-Oct 23): Brace yourself, Librans. You’re in the middle of an aspect that occurs only once every 19 years! There is tremendous potential for personal growth and reevaluation. But it will be like liver.. .looks bad, tastes bad, but sooo good for you. Consult your Leo and Sagittarius brothers and sisters, but focus on yourself...like that’s ever been a problem for you (cough).
SCORPIO (Oct 24-Nov 21): Your “fear nothing” facade is just that - but you need it right now. You have deep feelings that need evaluating, and as you attend to that, your emotions are uncomfortably close to the surface. The process is worthwhile however, so gut it out, Scorpio...and trust your fine-tuned intuition. Lingering affairs of the heart may finally be resolved.
SAGITTARIUS (Nov 22-Dec 21): Many things are ending rapidly, but this will leave you with a clear path. Don’t be scared or deterred. Spend time with friends while you experience this transition. As a constant in your life, they’ll be of great comfort to you now. Look closely at these people for useful examples of how to.. .or how not to.. .adapt.
CAPRICORN (Dec 22-Jan 19): Are you, by chance, noticing that your best friend also has nice legs? Acute butt? Jupiter and Venus have co-joined, so this special relationship is protected. Take a chance. Friends CAN become lovers. Meanwhile, bend that friend’s ear about all that crap going on at work, including your boss’s unexpected lack of candor.
AQUARIUS (Jan 20-Feb 18): You say po-tA-to, she says po-tAH-to; you say retirement account, he says hot-tub/jacuzzi with deluxe decking. This is an excellent time for you and your partner to resolve issues regarding differences in basic values. Be prepared to compromise, but don’t commit to any final decisions until after the Full Moon on the 19th.
PISCES (Feb 19-Mar 20): What would you say to O.J. to cheer him up? “Accentuate the positive.”? “You’re lawyer has nice suits.”? Look hard, Pisces, and you too will find things to feel good about. If nothing else, compare your life to those of your friends, then be supportive...even condescending if that’s what it takes to make you feel better. But don’t push it too far. “Detachments” are highlighted this month.
Mark Lawhon is certified by the American Federation of Astrologers,and is available for consultations by calling 407-894-1506.
WATERMARK / September 28, 1994 18
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▼ The Destiny off We continues at The Acting Studio through Sunday, Oct. 16. Destiny is Larry Kramer’s 1993 Obie Award-winning sequel to his earlier AIDS play, The Normal Heart. Tickets are $12; seniors and students $10. Call (407) 425-2281 for tickets.
y The 5th Annual International Pride film festival in Tampa begins on Sept. 30 and runs through Oct. 9. The festival will be held at the historic Tampa Theatre, as well as other venues.
Highlights include: an appearance by Perry Watkins on Monday, Oct. 3, in conjunction with SIS: The Perry Watkins Story, the award-winning video about Watkins’ 15 years as an openly gay man in the U.S. Army; the Central Florida premiere of Priscilla, Queen of the Desert, on Sunday, Oct. 9; appearances by comic and singing duo Romanovsky and Phillips and Orlando’s Improvabilities on Sunday, Oct. 9.
T The Orlando Gay Chorus begins their fall season with a concert and party at the Maitland Art Center on Saturday, Oct. 1 at 6 PM. Recording artists, The Rhythm Method, an a capella women’s group from Boulder, Colorado, will also perform. Tickets are $15.00. Call (407) 645-5866 for more information.
V Lewis Routh’s outrageous WhorCS Off a Different Color returns to Orlando after a five year hiatus. The off-beat comedy played to packed houses at the Parliament House last time around, and in fact, the play is set on the Parliament House stage, as six gay actors rehearse a play based on a Greek myth about male/male love. According to Routh, the play is a “fun-filled romp that still packs a punch with its message.” Tickets are on sale now and limited to 100 seats per performance. Opening night, Thu. Oct. 13, will be a benefit for Gay & Lesbian Community Services. For more information, call (407) 521-8134.
T GTCS sponsors their first annual GAY-TO^Tf f N, Sun. Oct 30, at the Orlando Marriott Downtown (formerly the Omni). There will be a cash bar, a raffle, and a costume contest. Festivities begin at 8 PM. Admission is $25 for members, $30 for nonmembers, and $35 at the door. Call (407) 425-4527 for tickets or more information.
T Parents FLAG, Delta Youth Alliance (DYA), and the Rainbow Democratic Club
(RDC) are selling a new and expanded 1995 Entertainment Coupon Book. This year’s book contains hundreds of coupons offering savings of up to 50% off purchases at restaurants, businesses, and entertainment outlets. Coupon books are only $30. Many who purchased books last year claim huge savings. Proceeds can be designated for the organization of your choice. To place an order call Allene Baus at (407) 896-0689, or send your check for $32 to: “Coupon Book,” P.O. Box 141312, Orlando FL 32814-1312.
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The Civic Theatre of Central Florida opens its SecondStage season with the cabaret musical Nightclub Cantata by Elizabeth Swados. Conceived as a musical revue, Cantata features the poems of such writers as Carson McCullers, Pablo Neruda, Sylvia Plath, Frank O’Hara and Delmore Schwartz set to music by Swados. Eight performers and two musicians bring the show’s 18 musical numbers to life under the direction of Orlando Opera Director of Education Robin Jensen. Cantata runs from Sep. 29-Oct. 16. Ticket prices are $12. Call the Civic Theatre Box Office for reservations. (407) 896-7365.
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Retro-pop-funk-dance band, Deee Lite will perform at The Club on Friday, Sep. 30. Polyester and platform heels optional. Tickets are $15, and showtime is midnight.
Then on Tuesday, Oct. 11, Sandra Bernhard will bring her “Excuses for Bad Behavior”tour to The Club. Bernhard, who plays a lesbian character on ABC’s Rosanne, will be backed by her band, The Strap Ons. A self-appointed chronicler of the times, Bernhard is expected to share her life while flirting with issues in true Sandra style, “sassily and with a big (but always entertaining) mouth.” Doors open at 8 PM. Tickets are $20 and are available at Ticketmaster or The Club Box Office. Those who have purchased tickets for the previously scheduled Tupperware show must refund and rebuy new tickets.

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Comedy Central repeats TV history with its second queer comedy special, “Out There II,” debuting October 11, on National Coming Out Day.
“Out There II” will be hosted by Orlando’s Amanda Bearse, and will feature performances by today’s hottest gay comics. The hour-long show will feature a mix of stand-up comedy, comedy performances and celebrity roll-ins including Whoopi Goldberg, Cybill Shepherd and Patrick Stewart. Performers include Karen Williams, Frank Maya, Maggie Casella, Scott Silverman, Mark Davis, Kate Clinton, Elvira Kurt and John McGivern. Check local TV listings for exact times.
WATERMARK / September 28, 1994 19
OUR CULTURE
29 30 1 CM CO 4 5
RAINBOW DEEE LITE AT THE ORLANDO GAY TAMPA GAY FILM DELTA YOUTH jjjijij O.B.B.A. Orlando’s FAMILY VALUES.
CONNECTION. CLUB. See article, CHORUS. See Local FEST. Featuring ALLIANCE. Support largest gay & lesbian Gay & lesbian radio
Group for teens & p. 18. Color, p. 18. Queer Animation Fest group for gay, lesbian bowling league. 9 PM. on 91.5 FM. Talk,
young adults from 18- at 4 PM. See Local & bisexual youth 644-2244. music, news, inter-
25. GLCS at 7:30 PM. ORLANDO Color, p. 18. under 22. 6 PM. views, community
425-7450. FRONTRUNNERS. 236-9415. events. 8-9 PM. 646-
9 AM. See Oct. 3. 2398.
LUCKY LADIES ORLANDO
BOWLING. Fair OUT LOUD RADIO. FRONTRUNNERS. ORLANDO
Lanes Indian Hills. See Oct. 8. Meet at the red pagoda FRONTRUNNERS.
6:30 PM. 293-8849. GLBL. Bowling at Fair Lanes Indian Hills. 831-7171. at Lake Eola. 6:30 PM. 857-1777. 7:30 PM. See Oct. 3.
THR FRI SAT SUN MON TUE WED
o> 7 8 9 10 11 12
MBA MEETING. THEATRE OUT LOUD. CENTRAL || GAYSKATE. NATIONAL FAMILY VALUES.
Downtown Radisson. SELECTIONS. Lesbigay talk radio. FLORIDA BEARS. Semoran Skateway in COMING OUT DAY. See Oct. 5.
6:30 PM. 420-2182. The Destiny of Me. 1300 AM in Cocoa; Full Moon Saloon. Fern Park. 9:15 PM.
1600 AM in Orlando 4:30 PM. 657-1817. 425-4527. SANDRA ORLANDO
THE Six Degrees of 4-7 PM. 290-1600. BERNHARD AT FRONTRUNNERS.
IMPROVABILITIES. Separation. TAMPA GAY FILM DELTA YOUTH THE CLUB. See 7:30 PM. See Oct. 3.
Eola Theatre. 8:30 PM. ORLANDO FEST CLOSING ALLIANCE. article p. 18.
521-7499. Me & My Girl. FRONTRUNNERS. PARTY. See Local See Oct. 3.
9 AM. See Oct. 3. Color, p. 18. OUT THERE II ON
LADIES BOWLING. Nightclub Cantata. ORLANDO COMEDY
See Sep. 29. BOWLING. FRONTRUNNERS. CENTRAL.
See Oct. 1. 6:30 PM. See Oct. 3. See article p. 18.
RAINBOW
CONNECTION. TENNIS. See p. 22. BOWLING.
See Sep. 29. See Oct. 4.
THR FRI SAT SUN MON TUE WED
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WATERMARK / September 28, 1994 20
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EICHBERG
From Page 1
their family and friends, and to teach them to lead powerful lives.” At that time, he points out, “there was such resistance to coming out... to being visible.”
Graduates from The Experience went on to help found the Gay Games, the Human Rights Campaign Fund (HRCF), the Stop AIDS Project, and many local community awareness programs. A component of each was the importance of coming out and living pridefully.
But for Eichberg, the need to motivate gays and lesbians to come out crystallized at the ’87 “March on Washington.” As he walked among the estimated half-million in attendance, Eichberg conducted a three-question survey: Are you out to your family? Are you out to your friends? Are you out at work?
“Almost everyone I talked to said they were not. So I took this message home with me and decided to work toward putting coming out squarely at the forefront of the gay and lesbian movement.” The driving vision, and for Eichberg there is always a vision, was that “it would be OK to be gay before the year 2000.”
Eichberg points out that the AIDS epidemic had a paradoxical effect on his vision. “On the one hand, AIDS turned attention away from the issue of visibility and toward ad-
Rob Eichberg, Co-Founder of National Coming Out Day
dressing the crisis at hand. But AIDS also drew many, willingly or not, out of the closet.” Rock Hudson is the most obvious example.
In October, 1988, the first National Coming Out Day was celebrated in 16 states. According to Eichberg, the reception was mixed. While the gay press and most activists and community leaders were enthusiastic, negative reaction came from two fronts. Many who were already comfortably out thought the concept was silly and unnecessary. Author Randy Shilts and Outweek editor Gabriel Rotello fell into this camp; both later told Eichberg they were glad he had not listened to them. Others were angry, feeling like they were being pushed out. For many in this group, National Coming Out Day was an unwanted reminder of rationalization and failed courage.
That first year, only Oprah used the event to bring attention to the impact of the closet on gay lives. But in 1990, Eichberg published Coming Out: An Act Of Love, now widely recognized as essential gay reading. By then, Eichberg and National Coming Out Day were in great demand on TV talk shows and in the gay and straight press. By 1992, Co-Chairs Eichberg and Jean O’Leary had turned the running of National Coming Out Day over to the HRCF Foundation. It is presently recognized in all 50 states.
One of Eichberg’s goals was always to convince celebrities to come out publicly. It’s happened. Since 1988, a previously unimaginable lineup of high-profile individuals has talked openly about being homosexual, demonstrating courage and offering role models for millions of clos-
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EICHBERG
From Page 20
eted lesbians and gay men. Eichberg has himself accompanied actors such as Orlando’s Amanda Bearse and Dick Sargent from Bewitched as they came out to television audiences.
But Eichberg notes that not everyone can be an activist. After reading his book, a “very famous actor” called to tell Eichberg that he disagreed with his contention that people, famous or not, face exactly the same difficulties in coming out. “He pointed out that if he came out, everyone on the street would know he was gay, automatically subjecting him to the prejudices of everyone he encountered. This wouldn’t happen for most people, and I had to agree with him.”
Eichberg’s own coming out occurred in 1970, and was complicated by the fact that he came out as bisexual and not gay. A student at UCLA and engaged to be married, Eichberg also accompanied his gay best friend to gay bars near campus. And like his friend, Eichberg found that he was attracted to some of the men he was meeting. He deferred his marriage and began dating both men and women, never hiding his bisexuality.
“For me it was a ‘freedom of choice’ issue,” he says. He also points out that, as a bisexual, he made both hetero and homosexuals uncomfortable. “In some ways it’s more difficult being bisexual. Gays think you’re closeted or in denial; straights just don’t get it... they don’t understand.”
When asked whether he thinks it’s easier to come out now, Eichberg points to another paradox. “Generally, it’s easier,” he says. “So many more people have come out, there are support groups in most communities, and there’s a more widespread acceptance of the lifestyle. But specifically... individually... it is no easier. For those in the process of coming out, it is not significantly different than it has always been. And that’s because it is largely an internal process involving issues of self-acceptance and self-truth.” “I never forget the process,” he adds. “It still takes courage to tell the truth.”
Eichberg feels that leaders in the gay and lesbian movement must learn to take the long view. In that context, he feels the struggle for gay rights in the military reveals much about progress made in the last decades. “This was the first time a national political figure, much less the President, has publicly and articulately raised our issues. There is no turning back from that.”
Eichberg is pleased with the progress toward his vision for the year 2000, when it will be “OK to be gay.” “We are now a very long way from the depths of the closet,” he says. “Bars are no longer fires waiting to happen, as they truly once were... hidden in back alleys with no windows. I don’t ever forget how deeply closeted we were in the 70s.”
Rob Eichberg, Ph.D., is a licensed clinical psychologist living in Santa Fe, New Mexico. He is the author of Coming Out: An Act Of Love. He is also the co-creator of “The Experience," a weekend workshop held regularly throughout the country. More information regarding dates and locations for “The Experience" may be obtained by calling 1-800-966-3896.
SIX DEGREES
From Page 13
and self-realized, then unbalanced and terrified of being an unloved nobody.
As Paul’s gullible victim Rick, Bill Patterson was honest and optimistic, struggling and confused by his homosexual encounter,thus revealing a man living in shame and failure.
The rest of the company worked as an ensemble, creating a viable reality for these contrasts to be played out. Lined up like watercolors in a case, the ensemble sat in the first row. Always visible, they became ever present in the lives of these main characters.
The minimal set worked as a blank canvas upon which these living Kandinskis were painted, and the lighting always helped the colors of the story appear to be more vivid. The technical and artistic work of this cast and company came together to enhance the script, helping this production live up to the quality that is expected from Theatre Downtown.
NOTE: Due to the popularity of this production, the scheduled evenings are close to capacity. There is the possibility of an extension, so please call the Theatre Downtown Box Office for information. (407) 841-0083.
Rosi'.Y viisirrs
MOOREHELDS...
NEXT ISSUE
vya i fiiviviAKn / September 28,19V4 22
SPORTS
GAY
TENNIS
GROUP
GROWS
by Tom Dyer
OBTA members, Jeff Horn and Mary Boothby
At 10:30 on the second Sunday morning of each month, around twenty lesbians and gay men converge on the tennis courts at Rosemont Country Club. Some are bright-eyed and ready for the first serve and volley. Others, showing signs from the previous night’s activities, are trying to figure out how to swing a racket with a cup of coffee in hand. All are looking to make friends, get some exercise, and if possible, improve their tennis game.
The Orange Blossom Tennis Association (OBTA) was started three years ago by a group of avid... and good... tennis players. According to co-founder Jeff Horn, “we all knew each other from the tennis circuit, and became friends that way. It’s a cliche, but none of us knew the others were gay until we ran into each other at the Parliament House.”
Inspired by bowling and volleyball groups, they began talking about the viability of a gay tennis league. “In fact,” notes Jeff, “we ripped our name off from the Orange Blossom Bowling Association... I guess its too late to ask them if its OK.”
The group began meeting on the tennis courts at Edgewater High School, but they soon outgrew that location. They moved to Rollins College, and then last year to Rosemont, where Horn is the resident tennis professional. They are currently considering adding another day of tennis
each month.
At present, OBTA has more men than women, but Mary Boothby hopes that situation will change. “It would be more fun for everybody if we had as many women as men... straights too.” Horn points out that “Orlando/Winter Park has what may be the strongest lesbian tennis community in the world. There are a number of nationally ranked amatuers... mostly former pros, who live here. I wish they’d join us.”
OBTA is a member of the International Gay & Lesbian Tennis Association (IGLTA), and regularly sends competitive teams to IGLTA sanctioned tournaments. The most recent was in Atlanta earlier this month. Indeed, OBTA has some excellent tennis players among their membership, including co-founder T.J. Jones, who captured two gold medals at the Gay Games in New York.
Horn himself is a certified tennis professional who competed professionally for two years. However, he and Boothby are quick to point out that most members of OBTA “are in the beginner to intermediate range.” “Everyone is welcome. It’s just a lot of fun, and all you have to do is show up with a racket.” Membership dues are $25 annually or $5 per Sunday. OBTA will meet again on October 9 at Rosemont Country Club. For more information call Jeff Horn at 895-3722.
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Healthy, loving, stable, long-term professional gay couple seek lesbian
to function as surrogate mother. Flexible regarding nature of future involvement with child. SERIOUS RESPONSES ONLY. Will pay all medical and associated expenses. Reply c/o W. Thomas Dyer, Attorney at Law, 701 E. Washington St., Suite 2oo, Orlando, FL 32801. (407) 648-1153.
Gorgeous AKC Registered DALMATION puppies. Available Oct. 6. Parents on premises. (6) males $300, (4) females $325 and up. Call Rick at 682-6096. All come with certificate of health.
REAL ESTATE WANTED: Need 3/ 2 home within reasonable commute of Disney. Around $80,000. Can pay 10% dwon on a no-qualify mortgage. Call Frank @ 834-0989.
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...correspondents and distribution persons for Volusia, Brevard, Osceola, Polk, and Lake counties. Please send resume and writing samples to Watermark, P.O. Box 533655, Orlando, FL 32853-3655. Call (407) 481-2243.
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Drs. Goodgame & Hopkins
FAMILY MEDICINE/INTERNAL MEDICINE
•New Patients Accepted W A Through over 100 active insurance programs with few full panels J0A jSfe Specialized HIV panels with several HMO’s • Board Certified Physicians wLj Family Practice & Internal Medicine ^ A ^ Members of Florida Hospital Medical Center and Columbia/ Winter Park Memorial Hospital Medical Staffs • Member of Westat DATRI Division of AIDS Treatment Initiative Members include Harvard, Duke, Johns Hopkins, Georgetown, Cedars-Sinai, UCLA & UCSF . Eleven active HIV & AIDS clinical trials Most of which are funded to eliminate any cost to participants

HIV Clinical Trials
The Research Office at Drs. Goodgame & Hopkins is now recruiting HIV positive men and women for several clinical drug trials. Potential participants with T-cell counts below 500 may have several study options available to them. If you are interested in possibly receiving the 0 JR latest in investigational antivirals or prophylac-* tic research treatments, or would like further % jflg information, please call Chuck or Rob at: (407) 647-6000 *
340 N. Maitland Avenue, Maitland, FL 32751
si rs SIM!
Resident DJ
Brent Simpson
Welcomes Retro DJ
Chris Rehbein
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«25< Draft -*P Wells -$1.75 Domestic Beer 6-9PM
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(Located across from the Orlando Jai-Lai • Formerly "Central Station")
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