Sweet Divinity: Tips on eating out!

By : Divine Grace
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divine graceHello, Dolls!

Summer is here, and many of you are trading in your alabaster birthday suits for melanoma here in “The Sunshine State.” Florida is known for its exotic beaches almost as much as it’s known for its Mr. Magoo-like drivers and bath-salt-smoking cannibals. And our summer months are much more than stationary traffic and skin cancer! There are also thousands of original, unique and flavorful restaurants for everyone to enjoy!

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My View: From a Broad – Left Out

By : Jill Shargaa
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JillShargaaCap

Raise your right hand if you’re left-handed! I’m a lefty and those that are can tell you, it’s not easy.

When I was in first grade, I vividly remember that when it rained during recess my teacher would break out the record player and we’d have to square dance or get up and move. Every time that happened I would break into a sweat. Not because of my dancing skills, but because it took me a long time to distinguish left from right.

“Start on your right foot!” I would naturally start on my left foot, reach with my left hand, turn the faucet toward the right hoping the water would come out…

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My View: From A Broad- This is what you call an Introductory Offer!

By : Jill Shargaa
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Jill Shargaa

Jill Shargaa (Photo by Judy Watson Tracy)

Watermark has asked me to write a column. “It can be on anything you want, political, serious, humorous…and it has to be about 900 words.”

I thought, “I don’t know 300 words, so this is gonna be a challenge.”

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Ally Agenda: An open letter to the mainstream media

By : Jamie Hyman
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JamieHymanHeadshottDear Mainstream Media,

Jan. 6, 2015 sure was a big day, wasn’t it?

LGBT couples across Florida finally won the right to marriage equality. Many of them chose to be a part of history, by participating in various mass, public weddings located throughout the state. Not only were these ceremonies moving, beautiful expressions of enduring, committed love, but they sure were great photo and video opportunities for Florida’s newspapers and television stations.

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Preaching to the Converted: From Kundis to Kelly

By : Ken Kundis
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KenKundisHeadshot_808353452In the movie Dangerous Liaisons, the John Malkovich character tells the story of a man who had an affair with an inappropriate woman. When the man would be questioned about it, he would simply reply “It’s beyond my control.” He said this so often, in fact, that he began to be comically and derisively linked to the phrase. It turned the man into a caricature.

I have a similarly odd imprimatur. Specifically, that of a Kelly-holic. The “Kelly” being the original American Idol, one Kelly Brianne Clarkson of Burleson, Texas.

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Words to Live By: Community

By : Rick Claggett
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Rick Claggett

Rick Claggett

My entire life is gay. I work in arguably one of the gayest offices in town, my gay friends and I mostly hang out in the locally gay-owned watering holes and I have played on gay softball, bowling, kickball and volleyball teams.

In fact, I even turn what’s straight about my life into something gay. My best friend, Jen, and I have lived together for almost 15 years.

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Preaching to the Converted: Fighting the Stroke

By : Ken Kundis
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KenKundisHeadshot_808353452When I was just dipping my toe into gay life as a senior in college in New Orleans, there was a man who frequented the triumvirate of the most popular gay bars in the French Quarter. He was inevitably fall-down drunk, often inappropriately flirtatious to an embarrassing degree, and clearly too old and feeble to be anywhere but somewhere warm, having a nice nap and an early bird dinner.

We called him ‘Fighting the Stroke.’ He was a talisman, a cautionary tale. At 22 and on (as he remained a fixture on the scene for many years after I graduated and would see him during my many visits to New Orleans in my 20s), he represented to me exactly what I did not want to become. Some sad old desperate queen trolling gay bars, ignorant of how depressing I looked.

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Homo Erectus- The Evolution of Us: Ghosting Out of the Party

By : Steve Yacovelli
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Steve Yacovelli

Steve Yacovelli

I have a confession to make … I’m not a Democrat.

But then again, I’m not a Republican either. I’m a registered Independent voter. And as an Independent voter living in the I-4 Corridor it’s been an interesting past few weeks: between the robo-calls, the forest of political flyers, the knocks on the door … I feel more popular than a muscled 24-year-old on Grindr. When our phone rings, my husband doesn’t hesitate to say to me “it’s for you” when the robos callers come a-callin’.

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Is Senator Marco Rubio becoming an anti-gay activist?

By : Susan Clary
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Could Senator Marco Rubio make it any clearer how he feels about the LGBT community?

Rep. Marco Rubio

Sen. Marco Rubio, “not a bigot”

First, he blocks Judge William Thomas’ nomination to the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Florida, preventing him from becoming the first openly gay federal judge. Then, he refuses to support the Employment Non-Discrimination Act (ENDA), the bill that would prevent employers from discriminating against gays in the workplace.

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Thinking Out Loud: More Than Gay

By : Abby Dees
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AbbyDeesHeadshotI often joke that I’m a professional gay.

What I mean is that I have this-here regular LGBT column, I’ve written a book on communication about LGBT issues, and I’m a host on IMRU, the longest continually running LGBT-themed radio show in the country. I’m totally out, obviously, and presumably just as proud. With a few small exceptions, my public life is totally queer.

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Viewpoint: A House of Cards, a House Divided and a House that is Always a Home

By : Peggy Green
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PeggyGreenHeadshotWhen Watermark Editor Steve Blanchard wrote in his Editor’s Desk [Issue 20.08] that he’d returned to St. Louis to visit his mom, he said what most people say of the place they were born-he said he’d gone home.

But “home” can be a loaded word for this queer tribe, with so many who carry feelings of unbelonging. Like the 40 years in the desert during which the “set apart” fanned out over the map, so LGBTs, like refugees from the “family of origin,” go off in search of that “family of choice.” And like those who never gave up on the promised land, we return to that house called home, where we know our place-or claim our place-and in that place, we wrestle with moving from silence to speech.

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