AsTheGroveTurns.net

This diary contains diverse views and opinions on what goes on in Cherry Grove, the nation and the world. Racism and bigotry have no place here. Please do not engage in personal attacks on other users. The cardinal rule here is to respect others. The opinions published here are those of individual writers and may or may not represent those of our publisher/editor or any other members of our volunteer staff.

To paraphrase a piece of writing that caught my eye on the Internet: "The ability to put my thoughts on (virtual) paper and put them where people can read and respond to them has been marvelous, even if most people who have read my writings haven't agreed with them. If there is any hope for the long term success of democracy, it will be if people agree to listen to and try to understand their  opponents rather than simply seek to crush them." -- RLF

In Memorium -- "My primary purpose in writing these articles is to help provide gays with a sense of their history outside of Stonewall. I feel we have to grab it wherever we are living it and get it down for the generations that will follow in our footsteps."--Mary Kapsalis.

Robyn Murray and Tommy "Tush" DiMastri are two of the twelve trashy characters that populate The Island Repertory Theatre Company's production of Del Shores hilarious comedy "Sordid Lives" that opens August 1 at The Tides Playhouse. (More info below.)

July 23, 2008 -- It's hot, and there have been days when I've gone down to get the mail and come right back home. I can just imagine what it's like in Manhattan.

(See our own little oceanfront production of "Gone With The Wind" above.)

Strong winds blowing off the ocean destroyed the second gazebo we'd put up in the last few years, and think that we'll not put up a third. I tend to take things like that in stride, but Big Nacho Man freaks out. It's not due to any radically different weather patterns, but something that can be expected to happen where we live. (See photos above.)

(Photo upper right: Ginny Fields and Richard LaFrance)

Top of the Bay Bistro has enclosed what used to be their open-air deck overlooking the bay. Now, it gives one the impression of dining on somebody's front porch. We like it.

(Photo upper left: Peter Downes (third from left) with friends.

On July 12, Top of the Bay Bistro hosted a "Jazz Brunch" fundraiser for The Island Repertory Theatre Company, a 501(c)3 not-for-profit corporation. Chef Judy served an array of mouthwatering New Orleans dishes that included top-notch biscuits and gravy, sausages, grits, French toast, steak and other good things, which guests consumed to the beat of a live jazz duo.

Photo upper left: Steven Fales (center) with friends)

Guests of honor NY State Assemblywoman Ginny Fields and Steven Fales, star of "Confessions of a Mormon Boy," (playing at The Tides Playhouse at the time) added glamour to the event.

Assemblywoman Fields presented Island Repertory Theatre Company founding members Peter Downes and Richard LaFrance with Citations issued by New York State for their work in the Cherry Grove community.

Thanks to Ron King, Justin Jones, Chef Judy and everyone else who was responsible for making the fundraiser a success. The proceeds will help reduce Island Rep's 2008 production deficit. (By the way, Top of the Bay Bistro offers Jazz Brunch on weekends. I recommend it.)

I was sorry to hear that Chef Judy recently had to leave her post at Top of the Bay Bistro due to health reasons and wish her well. In her few years here, she raised the level of gastronomic excellence in Cherry Grove and want to thank her for her efforts.

The good news is that she has been replaced by Chef Ryan (photo left), whose experience includes cooking assignments in New Orleans and Atlanta. A recent visit to Top of the Bay Bistro got four stars from both Big Nacho Man and me for real N'awlins gumbo, and wonderful grilled scallops. Other dishes included bacon-wrapped pork tenderloin, grilled ribeye, shrimp jambalaya, accompanied by yummies like grits and a wonderful corn maque choux. We can't wait to go back.

While we're on the subject of food, we want to recommend the new barbecue buffet at Island Breeze that is served on Sundays between 2pm and 6 pm. Line up at the buffet table and help yourself to wonderful homemade potato salad, baked beans, cornbread and watermelon. Then go out on the deck and fill your plate with grilled chicken, fantastic ribs, great hamburgers and corn on the cob. Price? An amazing $15.00. Even better: It's all you can eat. Yummy! Go before the crowds discover this Fire Island bargain!

We also can't get enough Fish 'n Chips and Greek Lamb Gyros at Cherry Lane Bistro, great summer food that's on nobody else's menu.

Watch for the opening of the ice cream parlor that Frank of Grove Pizza is erecting at the foot of the Ice Palace. (Photo right.) An incentive for all the Cherry Grove kids who need an incentive to behave or Mommies and Daddies won't buy them an ice cream cone . . .

The meatrack raids seem to have stopped as quickly and mysteriously as they began. No doubt, backroom meetings took place to remedy the situation, but what were they? To those who were involved in the negotiations: Why did the raids happen in the first place? What  caused them to stop? Without those missing pieces, they could just as easily start again. We're not all children here. Stop treating us like we are. The old Cherry Grove motto "ignore the problem until it goes away" isn't good enough! That's what dysfunctional families do. Is that what you think we are?

Have you ever heard a satisfactory definition of the word "camp?" It's certainly one of the "gifts" that the gay culture has bestowed on the world. It's impossible to describe. You either get it or you don't.

I think you'll find a true example of "camp," at Walter & Carmen's House at the corner of Surf and Lewis. For years now, Walter Quetsch has erected "politically incorrect" exhibits on his property that commented on what he found funny (or not) in his world. His work has grown to camp art status in the last few years and the current exhibit co-constructed by Walter and Renee Ravid is brilliant. If you know anyone who is wishy-washy about his sexual preference, bring him by Walter's Outdoor Museum of Camp, then stop and pretend that you've gotten something in your eye. If the person laughs hysterically at what he sees, you'll know he's a Friend of Dorothy's. You have to put Walter's Outdoor Camp Museum on your list of things to do when you visit Cherry Grove! Support the arts in Cherry Grove!!!

Walter recently changed his name to "Condemned." The exhibit on upper right is titled "Miss Haversham's Attic." If you don't know who that is, you've already failed the gay test.

Photos above portray famous best selling books like "Potted Harry and the Chamber Potty," and other camp classics.

Walter's "The Alchemist" has a "Stagger-In Clinic" that is open only fifteen minutes per day and features something that looks suspiciously like a glory hole. Under the "Positions Wanted" column in the employment section of Uriah's Heap Newsletter is the word "Missionary."

I want to thank writer/performer Steven Fales (photo left) for bringing his one-show play "Confessions of a Mormon Boy" to Cherry Grove. When I saw the show in Fort Lauderdale this past winter, I thought it would be perfect for a Cherry Grove audience. When I approached Steven after the show, I felt foolish asking him if he would consider performing it in our intimate 40-seat Tides Playhouse. After all, Steven had a successful off-Broadway run, played Lincoln Center and has since performed the show over five hundred times in the U.S. and abroad. He told me that he had never been to Cherry Grove and agreed to the July dates.

He gave the same great performance every night . . . not once did he just "walk through" his role.

Steven also agreed to promote the show and the whole experience, for me, was a delight.

His amazing performance (brilliantly directed by Tony winner Jack Hofsiss) broke Island Rep box office records (eleven sold out performances.) To my knowledge, it was also the first play to give weekday performances in Cherry Grove.

Thank you, Steven, for bringing your incredible talent to our shores. Thank you Cherry Grove for making him feel so welcome!

Above left: Robyn Murray (Dr. Eve) and Tommy Tush (Brother Boy); Above right: Edrie Ferdun (Sissy) and Barbara Flood (Latrelle)

If a picture is worth a thousand words, then a great one is probably worth publishing more than once. For example, take the one of Robyn Murray and Tommy Tush (upper left). They are are just two of the zany characters in The Island Repertory Theatre Company's production of "Sordid Lives" by Del Shores that bows into The Tides Playhouse on July 1 and play Fridays thru Sundays 'til August 17 .

This show is good and deserves a longer run. If you would like to facilitate in moving it to a new venue when it leaves The Tides Playhouse, please contact me.

Left to right: Seth Michael Donsky (Wardell); Vicki Solomon (Juanita)

The cast: Sally Ann Piacentino (Bitsy Mae); Edrie Ferdun (Sissy), Dell Harbin (Noleta); Michelle Coffaro (LaVonda); Cem Uyanik (Ty); John Philip (Odell); Dennis Callahan (G.W.); Seth Michael Donsky (Wardell); Vicki Solomon (Juanita); Robyn Murray (Doctor Eve) play some the most famous characters in gay theatre annals.

Left to right: John Philip (Odell); Dell Harbin (Noleta)

The fact that the prequel to the play premieres on the Logo cable channel on July 23 might have something to do with the rush to buy tickets that Island Rep has experienced since tickets went on sale a few weeks ago. As of this writing, two-thirds of "Sordid Lives" tickets have already been sold.

The Rep box office on the ground floor of the Top of the Bay Bistro building will be open July 26 & 27 between 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. and also on Fridays thru Sundays thru August 17.

You can also charge tickets to Master Charge and Visa at 631 597-9439 or online at www.Theatermania.com. Don't wait 'til the last minute to get your tickets. This is going to be one big blockbuster!

This year, Island Rep will offer two plays in its New Plays and Playwrights Series. On August 22-23, "The Rarest of Birds", a play by John C. Wood based on the life of actor Montgomery Clift (photo left), will play The Tides Playhouse. Fresh from a well-received off-Broadway engagement, the show stars professional actor Omar Prince (photo upper right) who received rave reviews for his outstanding performance.

On August 24, The Rep is considering a staged reading of a new play by Tony Finstrom entitled "Standing at the Gates of Janus". The play deals with the ruckus that Jane Fonda caused when she encouraged soldiers to desert their posts during the Vietnamese War. Another of Mr. Finstrom's plays under consideration is "Between The Covers" a new play with an All About Eve-ish plot. Although this is a free event for Rep 2008 subscribers, there are a limited number of non-subscriber tickets on sale for thirty dollars each at The Rep box office or at 631 597-9439.

Actors 20's thru 50's and an actresses in their 60's who are interested in being part of the readings should contact Island Rep at IslandRepCG@aol.com.

People, Places and Things: It was good to have singer extraordinaire Victoria Weston (looking great) back doing her thang at The Ice Palace on July 19. The "last of the great belters" has been living in Texas for the past seven years, and thought she'd come back to the Grove to let us know what we've been missing. Great singer! Great delivery! . . . Has anybody else heard the rumor that a Cherry Grove lodging establishment has been taken over by The Marriott Hotel chain? Big Nacho Man said that it's an absurd idea because the big M is owned by Mormons, who wouldn't be caught dead here. . . .

Sherwood was here on a visit and word is that he might be doing his thing at one of our watering holes in the near future.

If you'd like your event mentioned here on ATGT, just e-mail info to mailto:AsTheGroveTurnds@aol.com and you'll no doubt see it in our next edition.

As The Grove Turns was founded on May 15, 2000. So far, we have received over a million visits to our site from over fifty countries. Next edition of As The Grove Turns: August 8, 2008. 'Til then, God bless.

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"Because a great community deserves great theatre."

THE ISLAND REPERTORY THEATRE COMPANY

Richard LaFrance, Founding Artistic Director

E-mail: IslandRepCG@aol.com  Website:pan: http://www.islandrepcg.org/

ISLAND REP'S 2008 SUMMER THEATRE SEASON IS THE BEST EVER!

August 1-3, 8-10, 15-17

 

SORDID LIVES

a black comedy about white trash

written by DEL SHORES

directed by RICHARD LaFRANCE

Fridays and Saturdays at 8; Sundays and Mondays at 7

August 22-24

NEW PLAYS AND PLAYWRIGHTS SERIES:  Staged Readings of exciting new works.

Fridays and Saturdays at 8; Sundays at 7
*Free Event — Subscribers Only.

 For more information visit http://www.islandrep.org/

SINGLE TICKETS: $30

The Island Rep Box Office is located on the ground floor of the Top of the Bay Building on the dock. Hours: Saturdays and Sundays, 11 a.m-3 p.m or

Tickets: Call Island Rep Credit Card Hotline: 631 597-9439,

Single-Show Tickets:

"Sordid Lives": Theatremania/Sordid Lives

 

TO OUR READERS::

BE AN ANGEL!

Dear Friends:

For all the hours of free informative fun you spend reading our webzine, we hope you'll consider making your 2008 tax-deductible donation to The Island Repertory Theatre Company, our sister organization that is asking for your assistance in helping raise the money to produce their ninth fabulous season of presenting gay-themed comedies and dramas that chronicle the GLBT experience at The Tides Playhouse in Cherry Grove.

Please add your name to the following list of contributors:

ANGELS ARE ALIVE AND WELL!

The following people have made tax-deductible contributions to The Island Repertory Theatre Company in 2008 in the following categories. Please contribute what you can afford.

Founder $1,000+:

Richard Fenn

Richard LaFrance

This 'n That

Tides

Cherry Grove Pizza

Ron King & Justin Jones

Producer $500*:

Tony Finstrom & Jack Dezak Cherry's

Director $250+:

Jan Felshin & Edrie Ferdun Michael Kobos & Donald Egan
Walter B. Quetsch Charles Whipple
Eric Coyne

 

Dr. Anna Tirado & Ms. Henriette Von Woerkom

Patron $100+

Edwin & Neil Juan Punchin
Anonymous Jeffrey Zirpolo
Karen Durka Steven Tepper
Anonymous John Langan
James P. Hughes The House of Mae Bush
Tom Holden Roy and Barbara Flood
Bill Ottignon Virginia McInerney
Dan Nafziger John Philip
Rita & Jack Lichtenstein Bill & Tony Tholtsiniathis 
Jim Kapsalis The Cubby Hole (Fort Lauderdale)
Paul E. Elsener Ralph M. Hays & Harold Fried
Emma McGrattan  

Supporter $50+:

Mark Donatelli Anonymous
David J. Garfinkel Al Wolff
Lorenzo F. Pugliese Harold Seeley
Thomas McKenna Robert Michel
Ken Fabbrini Carl & Linda Eisenberg
Al Wolff James Keys
William Marino Anonymous
Tom Cunningham JKTWO LLC
Richard Daddario Gay Nathan and Julie Paradise
Edward Mallon Dan Daly
Jim Kelly Kim Guzalak & Anita Grosso

*Let us know if you prefer that your name not be listed as a contributor.

For your convenience, you can charge your tax-deductible donation in increments of $100 at PAYPAL or send a check payable to The Island Repertory Theatre Company in any amount you can afford to:

Richard Fenn, Treasurer,

Island Rep,

150 East 69th Street, #20M,

New York, NY 10021.

Island Rep is a 501(c)(3) not-for-profit organization. Be sure to mark your check “tax deductible contribution.” 

You can also charge your donation to a major credit card by calling us at: 631 597-9439.

Unless you advise us otherwise, your name will be added to the list of 2008 donors that is published in every edition of ATGT as well as on the Rep website.

Does your place of employment have a matching-grant program? Donations made in this manner are also completely tax-deductible.

Our 2008 Fundraising Goal is $18,000. Please Help!

"A Fire Island Gem" – Dan Evans, F.I Tide

"The Miracle of Legitimate Theatre" – Jeanne Lieberman, Fire Island Sun

 

For further information, visit our website: http://www.islandrep.org/ 


Thank you,
Richard LaFrance, Artistic Director
The Island Repertory Theatre Company

OUR MISSION: The Island Repertory Theatre Company is a Cherry Grove-based not-for-profit 501(c(3) arts organization dedicated to promoting cultural exchange, social interaction and goodwill between Fire Island communities by presenting time-honored and new plays that chronicle the GLBT experience.

Board of Directors: Richard Fenn, President; Lorie Bradshaw, Peter Downes, Pierre Galarneau, Ron King, Richard LaFrance, Nicole Pressly-Wolf, Juan Punchin, Frank Santoro, Bill Todt.

SUPPORT THE ARTS IN CHERRY GROVE!

All Donations Are Tax-Deductible!

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 Fort Lauderdale's Butch Bar For Men

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To visit our website on the net click here.

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DISSATISFIED INTERNET SERVICE CUSTOMER

Richard,

I was wondering if you heard any rumblings of complaints pertaining to barrierfree.net internet service. We originally purchased this service before the Pines Pantry was available. I am sure a lot of other people in the Pines/Grove did also and this year, the company has really tried to get one over on us by taking away an option for seasonal service (what's the point then, since we are in a seasonal community), and then by trying to charge us an additional $300+ on top of the original $500 we originally paid for our on roof-radio antenna. They claim the original equipment is "outdated". We are outraged.

When we inquired to the Pines Pantry about getting service they told  us there were many disgruntled customers in the Pines and Grove.

Any leads are appreciated. Also, if there is anywhere on your site I  can post a notice that will get people to report this company to the  BBB, and also maybe start a class-action suit against them?

Thanks.
ME Manning, Cherry Grove

(Editor: If what you write is true, why not change your service? Am I missing something here?)

JOHN ON P.A.W.S

As a long time resident in the Grove, I have yet to see evidence of the "rescue" efforts that Lee mentions. We have no traps or any facility to catch, feed and care for most animals. I know of no abandoned animals and the only effort I see in the Grove is the paws rep feeding the deer, telling me that there is a "feeding station on my walk. Since most of the people involved are volunteers, one cannot help wondering where the money goes. P.A.W.S raises more money than the Doctors Fund and Dunes Fund combined. I think , like the other organizations, we should expect to get some accounting from the P.A.W.S treasurer.

John

SAGE EVENT

Join us as SAGE salutes Cherry Grove residents, JIM FALLON, JAN FELSHIN and EDRIE FERDUN

Date: Saturday, July 26, 2008
Time: 4:00 pm to 6:00 pm
Place: At the home of Jack Dowling
251 Bayview Walk at East Walk
Cherry Grove, Fire Island

For information and to RSVP visit www.sageusa.org/cherrygrove. No admission fee but donations to SAGE are welcome and appreciated! LIMITED SPACE! RESERVE TODAY!

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THE PETER PRINCIPLE   by Peter Ellison


ON RECONCILIATION AND MOVING FORWARD

I spent three days in Philadelphia recently. I had to seek out some history and commune with loneliness. I had to get away, is all.

While there I bathed in history. My first day there I spent doing a few guided tours, led by National Parks officers, all of whom have encyclopedic knowledge of our young nation's founding. The Pennsylvania State House, more popularly known as Independence Hall, sits on, as one federal employee/scholar put it, "the most historical square mile in the most historical city in America." The hall was small, originally housing Pennsylvania's pre-Revolutionary War legislature, supreme court and the governor's office. As a one-size fits all building, one can imagine how hot it must have been during the summer of 1789, with dozens of delegates packed into a single room, in heated discussions regarding the founding of a new nation. This is the place in which our country was founded. The rooms sent chills up my spine.

The west room was the former judiciary. Across the hall, the east room, was where the legislature would meet. This room was the most historical single place in town. George Washington's chair was the only original piece in the room, at the head of the room with a sun emblazoned on the crown of the chair's back. Ben Franklin would later say that he quietly contemplated during the convention of 1789 whether the sun on Washington's chair was rising or setting on the fledgling nation. He decided it was rising. The Declaration of Independence was ratified in this room, the infamous convention took place here and most everything else significant for the founding of our nation took place in this room, this hub of political revolution.

With all the inspiring history, cocooned within a modern city, it was not long before I started contemplating contradictions. Clearly, Thomas Jefferson is the oft-cited epitome of hypocrisy amongst the founding brothers. In a beautifully succinct document espousing complaints against King George in 1776, Jefferson asserted that all men are created equal. Of course, he left out women and every black man, including his own slaves. It was then I realized that our history is rife with contradictions and outright shortcomings. It took us until 1965 to sign the Civil Rights Act into law. It was Lyndon Johnson who finally took a pen and crossed the final "T" of our founders idealistic visions. It was 176 years after the start of the convention of 1789.

This begs the question, why did the most revolutionary nation in world history, seeking the consent of the governed to establish government, take almost two centuries to fully realize its more idealistic notions of equality for all and tyranny for none?

An obvious answer could be racism. Another hatred, innate fears of whatever, or whomever, is different. I prefer a less complex, but just as troubling, answer. Americans, historically, love having their cake and eating it too. We relish being able to say one thing and then do another. Ironically enough, the very freedom we prize allows for this. Since we have the freedom to say and to write what we wish, why not make it idealistic, pure and good sounding? Then, at the end of the day, we can go home and, despite claiming that we're all equal shun the hispanic grocery clerk or avoid walking past the corner where a couple of black teens are conversing.

Today we seem more aware of the fact that, like it or not, all different people from all different places can and will come here to our United States. Tolerance, far from universal, is assuredly more prevalent today than in the 18th century. We can safely be sure of this because of political correectness rearing its ugly head. Political correctness is a 20th century invention. One can see it everyday in public schools, on televisions and on radios across America. The major TV networks do it, watering down issues so they are easier for Americans to intake and tolerate. Let's not offend anyone, is the philosophy, let's not step on anybody's toes. The truth is that P.C. is probably the most un-American concept in existence today.

By masking truths and preventing uninhibited discussions of issues we are only hurting ourselves. One cannot say, "Young black men are more likely to join gangs than their white counterparts," without being considered racist and intolerant. The statement is not "politically correct" enough. However, by ignoring statistics that clearly show a higher number of young black men joining gangs (per capita) than young white men you avoid having a frank discussion about the issue. By not fully recognizing the problem in all its unfortunate ugliness one cannot, and likely will not, proceed to step two, actually solving the problem at hand. Not letting our dynamic and free society confront problems head-on, and instead making excuses, we are in fact anti-patriots. Take, for example, the issue of slavery. The issue was ignored and excuses were made. In the end, it took the most horrific and taxing war in our nation's history, the Civil War, to solve the problem. When problems go unresolved and ignored they will only fester and then compound. Another example of this is affirmative action.

Tipping the scales to minorities, women and the disabled means we are again acting un-American. Granted, there has been significant discrimination to each and all of these groups, but unfortunately discrimination is not a uniquely American problem. It always has existed and will continue to exist, to some extent, in societies the world over. Whether the discrimination is social, economic or political it will always accompany the human condition, regardless of what we legislate or force upon society via quotas.

By supporting programs like affirmative action one supports the chipping away of our beautifully unique merit-based system. This may be less true today than in the past, but immigrants continue to flock to our country because they know that with time and dedication they can climb the rungs of our society, making for themselves and their families a better life.

Lastly, affirmative action works on the base assumption that certain folks are innately inadequate. Whereas some people may be innately disadvantaged, like students in a poorly funded inner-city school, for example, trying to solve this problem by offering a leg up is, again, masking the root of the issue. By employing programs with weighted, preferential treatments we lose sight of what we should be focusing on. If one is disadvantaged because of access to education, then why not work to institute education reforms, search for new and innovative sources of funding or work to hire more qualified, dedicated teachers. Why spend the time creating a system designed to be condescending, a system which implies that people cannot help themselves. History proves that despite racism, discrimination and the outright denial of rights to some groups in America, these groups do assimilate, they do overcome.

Back in 18th century Philadelphia, the constitutional convention was unique. It was special because delegates representing varying interests came to together and were willing to make sweeping compromises regarding most every issue they tackled. They neutered federal powers in exchange for individual state powers. They took the first step toward eliminating slavery with the 3/5th's compromise, curtailing some of the south's political clout. Most importantly, they granted citizens the liberty necessary to go out and work for themselves. They gave anybody willing to put in the time the chance at a good, comfortable life. Sure, not everybody was included in the initial practice but eventually women, blacks and subsequent minorities would be brought into the fold. These groups banded together, stared their hindrances right in the face and, instead of making an excuse or asking for a leg-up, they said, "Get out of my way, or else."

Women's suffrage, civil rights reform and other victories over oppression were not easy fights. It's difficult changing anything, let alone the traditional practices on which an entire society operates. Without a Philadelphia in 1789 and men to forge the compromises necessary for our nation, we would have a far less dynamic society. We could certainly be less welcoming to strangers abroad if so much freedom and idealism didn't convene in one place late in the 18th century.

At the close of my trip to Philly, James Madison came to mind. Despite what anybody thinks of our government, our practices, our flaws and our vast array of contrived solutions this one thing that Madison left us with holds true for all people in all places:

"If men were angels, no government would be necessary."


Comments, Questions or Quibbles: Petelikesnews@gmail.com

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http://www.belvederefireisland.com/

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JUSTINE'S VIEW

Photos by Justine La Hagela

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As The Pines Turns 

by Alan and Carlos (The Freedom Guys)

The summer in the Pines continues to heat up, literally.  The overcast weather didn't deter the drag queens and on lookers from yet another invasion blast.   The rain held out and the partying continued throughout the day.  For the annual boat decorating contest, many of the boats were transformed into a circus tent, a Hawaiian Luau and our boat (Freedom) hosted the finest from the US Army complete with tank, cannon, camo and our very own Army chick.  (insert pic of Army men saluting).  Don't ask, don't tell seemed to be talked about all day.  The music was turned up and the queens invaded every bar, restaurant and showed all of their wares to the thousands cheering.  Everyone had a blast.



Has anyone noticed that the music this year is awesome!!  Low Tea and High Tea have had excellent DJ's, many new to the Pines.  The mix has also been changing during the week and has been a lot of fun.  Even the Sip & Twirl (or Sip & Fall as some of us have experienced) is really getting people moving.  Great to see (hear) the new offerings. 

Lots of good competition from the two best restaurants on Fire Island:  Top of the Bay Bistro and The Pines Bistro.  It's great to see a good group hopping the water taxi to the Grove for an excellent sunset dinner at the "Top" and great theatre.  Looking forward to "Sordid Lives" if we can still get in!  The Pines Bistro is still the place for fine dining in the Pines.  Two outstanding restaurants.

There's still time to join the thousands for the year's biggest party:  Pines Party 2008: Circus ! Under the Big Top.  The party is this Friday from 10PM through 6am right on the beach.  There's still time to purchase tickets in the harbor.  It's an absolute blast with dancing, entertainment, go go boys and open bar all night.  The party's proceeds are split with FIPPOA Charitable Foundation and Stonewall Community Foundation.  Please join us, you will not be disappointed.  We'll share some pictures in the next edition. 

See you then!

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HUNK OF THE WEEK

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Fire Island Follies

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Sex and the Island

by LLOYD FIDER

 

The Slut

 

July 23, 2008 -- A couple of weeks ago, I was reading an article about aggression in young girls. In the article, the author talked about the different categories girls can be placed under, like the Queens, Wannabees, Sidekicks, and the Targets. What caught my attention regarding the Targets was one of its sub-categories – the Sluts. According to the author, the sluts can be characterized as those girls who matured early, have big breasts, and have been rumored to be sexually active and promiscuous. What I found interesting in the article was when the author pointed out that the Sluts elicit a mix of anxiety, envy, and fascination among the people around them, primarily because they tend to be quite different than the “normal” girls. And I think that’s also true when it comes to boys and those called “Jocks.” The Jock who is called the “Ladies’ Man” and rumored to have slept with the whole cheerleading squad does become the popular man on campus, and is looked upon and envied by others.

 

In the gay world, there are definitely those that we can call “sluts.” It is no secret that in my circle of friends, I have been called a slut (or whore) many times. But to definitively call someone a slut can be a little tricky. To me, there seems to be different variations and/or definitions to the word “slut.” So I can’t help but wonder – in the gay world, what makes someone a slut?

 

The dictionary definition I got for “slut” was a promiscuous woman. Since men can also be sluts, I looked up the dictionary definition of “promiscuous” - having casual sexual relations frequently with different partners; indiscriminate in the choice of sexual partners. Sounds about right. They are those who have sex with multiple people, whom I call the Bed Hoppers. They like to hook up with different people, either those they meet at a club, bar, or online. How often they do this varies. And why they choose to hop from one bed to another is unknown. I am sure each one of them has a reason why. To some, having sex with multiple people is like a sport. To some, it’s a conquest, like the Colonists of the 19th and early 20th centuries. The more colonies they had, the more powerful they looked in the eyes of the world. It can also be an ego booster or a confidence builder. Getting someone into bed means that they are good looking or attractive enough to convince someone to have sex with them. While to others, well, they just like to have sex all the time.

 

And then there are those who are called sluts, not necessarily because they sleep with everyone, but because they exhibit certain behaviors and/or characteristics that make them look or sound like a slut. And I guess this is where I come in. Yes, I do like sex (who doesn’t?). But it doesn’t mean, and will never mean, that I sleep with a lot of different men. So the big question is, why am I called a slut?

 

I guess the biggest reason why my friends call me a slut (either as a joke or they really perceive me that way) is because I like talking about sex. It is a very interesting and thought-provoking subject. I don’t hesitate sharing my thoughts on certain topics, like what makes a blowjob good, the best way to perform anal sex, or doing 3somes. And I don’t really shy away from sharing my own personal experiences, not that I have a lot of them to make me a Bed Hopper. But don’t get me wrong. I just don’t start talking about my sex life with anyone. I still need to feel comfortable with someone to tell them about my most intimate secrets. But with my friends, the sky’s the limit (well, maybe not the entire sky).

 

Whether one has sex with multiple partners or only with someone he or she cares for, or sees sex as a sport, or an act reserved for a special occasion, one thing is for sure – sex is a pleasant and wonderful thing. It’s like chocolate – sometimes, one is just not enough. It can also be like a box of chocolates. You never know what you’re gonna get. Sex does bring a sense of freedom, but it also carries responsibilities. Sex is something to enjoy, as long as we don’t harm ourselves or someone else.

About the author: Lloyd is 25 years old and has a BA degree in Psychology from Stony Brook University. He is currently pursuing his Masters degree in Social Work at Fordham University. He currently works for a printing/graphics design company as a production coordinator. He loves volleyball, badminton, bowling, movies, books, writing, biking, hiking, the beach, and hanging out with his friends. He is currently single. He currently resides in Jackson Heights, Queens, NY. Prior to that, he lived in Huntington, Long Island for 6 years.

For comments or questions, please email him at thatslife1982@yahoo.com

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FIRE ISLAND MEN 2006 WALL CALENDAR

Packed with 13 breathtaking natural scenes of Fire Island Men on pristine beaches and forests of Fire Island. The images are from Emmy award winning film maker Tom Castle's upcoming photography book licensed exclusively for this project. All models are Pines/Grove residents or visitors over 18 years old who volunteered to be photographed ‘as is’ in clothing optional areas of the beach and forest.

http://www.fireislandmen.com/

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OF INTEREST

WISCONSIN GAYS FACE FINE, JAIL TIME FOR MARRYING IN CALIFORNIA

Same-sex couples from Wisconsin who marry in California can face nine months in jail and a $10,000 fine on returning home, CNN reported last Tuesday.

The penalty, based on a 1915 law originally enacted to prevent interracial marriages performed in other states, is being revived to persecute same-sex couples who tie the knot in California. “If you leave the state to get married with the intent of coming back to the state, you can be subject to imprisonment for nine months and up to a $10,000 fine,” Glenn Carlson of the LGBT advocacy group Fair Wisconsin told CNN in a video interview.

The Wisconsin law states that “if any person residing and intending to continue to reside in this state who is disabled or prohibited from contracting marriage under the laws of this state goes into another state or country and there contracts a marriage prohibited or declared void under the laws of this state, such marriage shall be void for all purposes in this state with the same effect as though it had been entered into in this state.”

However, not only will the marriage be void, but couples can also be punished to the full extent of the law.

The penalties sound fair to Julaine Appling of the Wisconsin Family Council. Appling told CNN that same-sex couples who break the Wisconsin law should be charged with fraud. “It’s a defrauding of the government,” she said. (The Advocate)

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COMMUNITY BULLETIN BOARD

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DOK-TA-HOUSE MOVING. We go down on everything, but the price. Jack 631 597-6638, Bob 631 597-9756, Cell 631 671-9688.

LIMO SERVICE. Rainbow Rides. Prompt, Courteous Service. Alex Bender 516 351-4481.

LONG ISLAND THEATRE FOLK always read the latest LI show biz news on  http://www.debsliweb.homestead.com/.  It's got casting calls, audition information, theatre directories and more. Check it out.

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MOTS AND NOT SO BON MOTS

THE 84 YEAR-OLD BRIDE

The local news station was interviewing an 84 year old lady because she had just gotten married – for the fourth time.

The interviewer asked her questions about her life, about what it felt like to be marrying again at 84, and then about her new husband’s occupation.

“He’s a funeral director,” she answered.

“Interesting,” the newsman thought.

He then asked her if she wouldn’t mind telling him a little about  her first three husbands and what they did for a living.

She paused for a few moments, needing time to reflect on all those years.

After a short time, a smile came to her face and she answered proudly, explaining that she first married a banker when she was in her early 20’s, then a circus ringmaster when in her 40’s, later on a preacher when in her 60’s, and now, in her 80’s, a funeral director.

The interviewer looked at her, quite astonished, and asked why she had married four men with such diverse careers.

“Easy, son,” she smiled.

“I married one for the money . . . two for the show . . . three to get ready . .. and four to go!”

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