They died so we can live. It’s the kind of deep statement you hear people on Fox News say about soldiers who have fought in our wars. Unfortunately it’s also a statement you could use for the thousands of trans people who have been murdered over the years for the simple, yet revolutionary, act of being themselves. Here’s a couple of shocking facts: last year 238 trans people were murdered worldwide. In America 1 in 12 trans people is murdered. What the fuck! I know it’s a dark topic but hey, GAYLETTER isn’t all beer and Skittles. This Thursday is your chance to pay some respect to the trans lives we’ve lost. The Center (The Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual & Transgender Community Center) is hosting a day of remembrance and we promise it’s going to be way more uplifting than the first half of this post. There’s going to be inspirational speakers, even snacks! It’s open to all people, trans or otherwise. Show up, show some respect, and make a commitment to make the world better for our trans brothers and sisters.
The queer experimental festival is celebrating their 27th year
If MIX NYC was a person, you’d desperately be trying to make them your best friend. They’d be that person who is unapologetically themselves, artistically prodigious and proudly, loudly queer. The kind of person who is serving looks (likely homemade yet inexplicably high fashion) whether it’s Wednesday morning or Saturday night. They’d go to the parties you wish you knew about, and probably turn up fashionably late after a quick stint in jail for protesting corporate greed. Let’s be real, you’d probably fall in love with them.
Well, you sound crazy because they aren’t a person. But luckily you CAN love a festival and in the 2014 MIX Festival there is plenty to get an intellectual boner about. Over the next week MIX will immerse you in the vibrantly queer worlds of experimental film, art installations and warehouse parties in their Festival HQ — known as the MIX Hive and described as an “opulent beehive cathedral.” Sign us up, honey! Hundreds of volunteers have transformed this Brooklyn space into a community hub where you can lounge around on cloud pillows, discover new friends and experience art that is daring, challenging and fabulously queer.
Celebrating their 27th year, MIX kicks off the 2014 season on November 11 with their Opening Night event “Colony Collapse Disorder,” featuring performances by Peter Cramer and his experimental band NYOBS, an audiovisual extravaganza by Chris Berntsen & January Hunt, and of course a program of transcendent films that you won’t see anywhere else. As the night rolls on, the MIX Hive unravels into a unique warehouse soiree featuring DJs and shows from the likes of Kembra Pfahler, Cornelius Loy, Mike and Claire and many more.
There’ll be screenings every day through to Sunday November 16, so browse the full program and discover something that tickles your fancy. Pop on down to Brooklyn and support this incredible festival — the result of dedicated volunteers and the sublime embodiment of two things: experimental film and queer friendship. So let’s celebrate — because where else can you watch queer experimental films with a few hundred new friends and party late into a Tuesday night?
Entry to the MIX Hive is FREE, Opening Night is $25, General Screenings $13. From Tuesday November 11 – Sunday November 16. The 2014 MIX Festival, 337 Butler St, Brooklyn, NY. Click here for tickets and more info.
Casey Spooner hosted the official release for his new book at VFILES
The popular door bitch Markus (yes, I can say “bitch” because he knows how to do bitch well and if you are good at something, you should just embrace it) is doing a new weekly Bingo night. Markus is very funny. He always makes me laugh whenever I see him, especially when he makes fun of me. The last time I saw him was in Fire Island, I was so hungover and a mess, I was on my way to the overpriced supermarket when I bumped into him, and he really made me laugh a lot and made my afternoon better. Anyways he’s hosting this new Bingo event at The Monarch Room and we are super excited about it. Mainly because we fucking love bingo! Tom is addicted to gambling, throw him in Vegas with some money, he’ll come back with no money and no clothes, unless someone is watching over him... and I grew up playing Bingo with my mother’s friends back in the DR (there was not much to do there, and I was really into earning money.) This is the first night for this event and it’s free to play. There will also be “a special punch for sharing – sold by the pitcher, drinks and food on sale.” You can either reserve a table or just show up, walk-ins are welcome! I don’t know what the prices for the cocktails and food are, but once you arrive, feel free to ask Markus, he’s such a helpful bitch.
V gave a wild performance at the downtown institution The Cock
The awesome indie food magazine Put an Egg On It just released their 9th issue and I can’t wait to see it. This Sunday is their official launch party. For those of you who are not familiar with the publication it’s “an irreverent digest-sized art and literary magazine printed on green paper from New York City. It’s about food, cooking and the communal joys of eating with friends and family. The magazine is biannual and features personal and photo essays of dinner parties, special art projects, illustrations, as well as practical cooking tips and recipes.” This Sunday you are in for a real treat, basically all guests eat and drink for free until everything is gone. There’s going to be beer, sake and snacks provided by Momo Sushi Shack. Ralph McGinnis (one of the editors of the magazine) told me that it’s “first come first serve for drinks and food, sooooo…when it’s gone it’s gone.” A word of advice, if you are greedy and don’t know how to share please stay home, it’s not attractive looking so hungry in public.
With a special performance by Jennifer Hudson at the W Union Square
You’re probably well aware of our love for Justin V. Bond considering we write about V at least 2 to 3 times a day (I kid), however this Wednesday we get to really show some love to V with a night dedicated to honoring the performer and V’s already legendary career. Best of all, it’s all going down at The Cock! The night is officially a fundraiser for NYPAC, a group that supports performance art in NYC, but we’d forgive you if you just showed up for V. Tickets for the main event are a little steep at $150, so if you’re on a budget we suggest you skip that and show up for the after-party where you’ll get music by Juliana Huxtable, Michael Magnan and Sammy Jo, plus you’ll get to hang out with all the rich boys who were there earlier for the pricey part of the evening (where they watched performances by Joseph Keckler, Erin Markey and Casey Legler). I haven’t been to the Cock in a while so am excited to see how they dress up the place for the evening, or dress it down — that’s the best thing about Justin, V fits in anywhere.
I was chatting to Nathan Manske, the creator of I’m From Driftwood, the LGBTQ Story Archive, about this upcoming event. As a fan of podcasts (I listen to about 30 on rotation each week) I thought the idea of reading queer coming out stories live (and turning them into a podcast — which I told him he MUST do) was a great idea. Turns out the event comes out of a mentoring program with the Moth, the popular storytelling show/podcast, so they’re in good company. This Sunday is the premier of what I’m sure will become a regular event: “Two I’m From Driftwood Video Stories will be screened, and then eight storytellers will tell their stories live with nothing more than a microphone and a spotlight.” Best of all the event is free, and the location, Videology in Williamsburg, will be offering happy hour drink specials. If you’ve spent more than a minute on the I’m From Driftwood site you’ll know what to expect from the night. If you haven’t, let’s just say you’ll probably get a little choked up. Some of the stories are super intense, but in a good way — look at it this way, if they’re able to share it to a roomful of strangers then they’re likely already in a better place #itgetsbetter.
All the gay boys go crazy for the show American Horror Story, the new season just started and everyone’s running around the city like crazy looking for a place to watch it. I was walking home last week and saw this boy Ryan, who’s part of NYC nightlife, and he was on his way to watch the show at a friends’ place, “OMG it’s gonna be so good...” he said. I saw this event and thought I must help these queens out… The event’s FB page says it best: “Are you a freak? Do you love American Horror Story? Do you love alcohol? Are you too cheap for cable?” If you answer “yes” to at least 2 of those questions then listen up. The Bearded Lady Wednesdays is brought to you by Will Sheridan and Mark Dommu at Gym Bar and it has everything you’re looking for from a AHS viewing party. While Mark hosts the show with trivia and “commentary between commercial breaks,” Sheridan will pour “#GIANT” drinks behind the bar — Mark adds, “every time someone on the show dies, we offer cheap shots — and this is american horror story, so it's likely that you'll be blackout drunk in the first half hour.” Oh and btw the event is downstairs from the regular bar, just in case you are not in the mood to deal with the tired queens that populate that place. Trust me I’ve been there.