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    Sister Dana Sez, “So now that we’re in a new month since New Year’s resolutions, how many of those resolutions have we already broken?!”

    By Sister Dana Van Iquity–

    Sister Dana Sez, “So now that we’re in a new month since New Year’s resolutions, how many of those resolutions have we already broken?! Go to the gym more often? Go on a better diet? Stop gossiping? Well, of course we broke those. Way too much stress. So why not take Sister Dana’s amended easier Resolution Solution: I RESOLVE TO BE THE BEST ME I CAN BE. You truly cannot break that one very easily! And why would you want to?”

    Sister Dana Sez, “Oh, and by the way, Happy CHINESE LUNAR NEW YEAR otherwise known as the Year of the Rat!”

    We joined KREWE DE KINQUE [KDK] for our PRIMARY COLORS PARTY at The Edge bar on January 18 for our regular third Saturday beer bust, produced by KDK Member Diana Wheeler. We raised funds for our Bal Masque XVII beneficiary, COMPTON’S TRANSGENDER CULTURAL DISTRICT, as well as registering voters at the event and outside of the bar. These colors are red, white, and blue! Serving as vivacious MCs were Kit Tapata (KDK Queen X Kitty Tapata) and Sister Agnes of the Sisters of Perpetual Indulgence. Mixing the beats was KDK King XII Joe Prince Wolfe (Go BANG!) while KDK King XIV Barry Miles was at the door. This was KDK Queen Sister Dana’s first outing since surgery, wearing a very not fashionable sling, so I sadly relinquished my usual duties at the door. Extremely talented performers taking the stage included reigning KDK Queen XVI Kelly Rose, reigning KDK King XVI Aja Monet-Ashton, KDK Queen XV Miss Chief, KDK King John Weber, and KDK King II Mark Paladini, to name just a few. Proceeds helped to support the mission of the Compton’s Transgender Cultural District: to create an urban environment that fosters the rich history, culture, legacy, and empowerment of transgender people and its deep roots in the southeastern Tenderloin neighborhood.

    On January 20, celebrations on MLK JR. DAY were held across the country. It was a time for celebrating, but also for activism. By no means are we done with the work. The Rev. Dr. King, Jr.‘s words remind us that the fight for civil rights and equality is far from over. We must restore and expand the Voting Rights Act and continue to fight against voter suppression, purging the voter rolls, and racial gerrymandering. We know that voter disenfranchisement continues today with barriers like reduced access to the ballot box through limited hours and locations, so we must also make ELECTION DAY a federal holiday to allow everyone the opportunity to exercise their right to vote!

    Mayor London Breed, who marched with thousands in San Francisco, remarked, “Every day, we strive to uphold the values that Martin Luther King, Jr., embodied—justice, equal rights for all, and service above self. On this day, we pay tribute to Dr. King by serving in our communities, side by side with our neighbors, and reflecting on his tireless efforts to lift up those who have been left behind.”

    The next day, Senator Scott Wiener (D-San Francisco) and Assemblymember Shirley N. Weber (D-San Diego), on behalf of the California Legislative LGBTQ Caucus and the Legislative Black Caucus, held a press conference asking Governor Gavin Newsom to issue a posthumous pardon to Bayard Rustin, a gay civil rights organizer who played a central role in the Civil Rights movement and was a close confidante of Martin Luther King, Jr’s. 

    Sister Dana sez, “It’s really discouraging to discover that GOP state lawmakers have been filing more than one anti-LGBTQ bill per day in 2020.”

    SAN FRANCISCO FIREFIGHTERS 2020 was an evening of art and live entertainment hosted by curator and artist Thomasina DeMaio on January 18 in the auditorium of Eureka Valley Recreation Center. This was a collection of 40 portraits of sf firefighters—both current and retired. These were painted at the SAN FRANCISCO FIREFIGHTERS TOY PROGRAM during the months of October through mid-November by DeMaio. This evening the sitters got to take home the pieces. Thank you Sally Casazza and Jill Nicole for creating this historic record of our heroes. To see some of these lovely paintings, go to https://bit.ly/2Rxpg2H

    The live entertainment was by Irene McCalphin singing some truly on-fire blues, and Tribal Baroque—a male and female dancer duo with bells on their ankles, playing violins and stomping out percussion to original numbers. Food and drink were supplied during this free event. Watch for more of these amazing programs coming to the same place, different date!

    Sister Dana sez, “Big congratz to our SF 49ERS scoring 37 to 20 over the Green Bay Packers! The 49ers opened up a 27–0 lead by halftime and didn’t look back, winning the NFC Championship!”

    Sister Dana sez, “So tragic that our NBA Lakers’ legend Kobe Bryant and his daughter and seven others were killed in a horrendous helicopter crash in Southern California. Friends mourn everywhere in EssEff and elsewhere. I send more than condolences—I send LOVE!” 

    It was the 16th DISCO COALITION HAPPY HOUR hosted by Suzan Revah at Lookout bar on January 24 to honor all of Donna Sachet ‘s amazing work for the LGBTQ community and to raise funds for PRC formerly AIDS Emergency Fund. To date, Disco Coalition has raised $64,530 for queer nonprofits. At the event, Donna was justly awarded in person Certificates of Recognition by Senator Scott Wiener and Supervisor Rafael Mandelman. I am happy to say that Donna and I have been good friends for decades. There was an altar and burning votive candles of Our Lady of the Castro. For your information, the Disco Coalition fosters solidarity, builds community, and encourages activism via gatherings and collaborations with the collective intention of shepherding queerkind toward a brighter future. A future event is on February 28 to honor Queeros: Harry Lit & Allan Egglithttps://www.discocoalition.org

    On January 25, Bay Area residents participated in a mass protest against a war with Iran. Saturday’s demonstration was part of a global day of protests against the United States’ military aggression in the Middle East.

    Sister Dana sez, “It’ll soon be a brand new month, so why not go to some of these brand new upcoming February events?!”

    For the month of February, STRUT is exhibiting the work of graphic artist Lawrence Lindell in a show entitled QUEER COMICS SAVES LIVES. The Art Opening Reception at 470 Castro Street starts at 8 pm, and will go till 10 pm. Bring your friends, because all are welcome! The Art program at Strut was founded the same year that Magnet began back in 2003, and they have been exhibiting the work of a different queer artist each month. The exhibit gives an inside look into some of the pages in Lindell’s life, brain, and how he sees the world. Through the art of comics, Lindell explores queerness, blackness, mental health, and healing. Lindell is a cartoonist and educator from California. He is the creator of Couldn’t Afford Therapy So I Made This, From Black Boy With Love, and his graphic memoir From Truth With Truthhttps://lawrencelindell.com/

    EMPEROR NORTON’S 202ND BIRTHDAY PARTY is February 4, 8 pm at Manny’s (3092 16th Street). Join the EMPEROR NORTON LEGACY LEAGUE as we celebrate our beloved Emperor’s 202nd birthday. Fun! Cake! Prizes! https://www.facebook.com/events/630887687702931/

    RuPaul will host SATURDAY NIGHT LIVE for the first time next month. NBC’s long-running sketch comedy show is now in its 45th season. Ru will host the show on February 8 with musical guest Justin Bieber. Will the Biebs do drag?!

    ACADEMY OF FRIENDS celebrates their 40th Anniversary with RUBY RED GALA on February 9, 5 to 10 pm at The Commonwealth Club, 110 The Embarcadero. Believe me, your North Tinseltown reporter, that this is THE place to be for the Oscars! Academy of Friends annually produces the world’s premier Academy Awards Night Charity Gala as the centerpiece of its efforts to raise funds, award donations, and encourage volunteerism that benefit a diverse set of HIV/AIDS organizations in the San Francisco Bay Area. The beneficiary this year is the LGBT ASYLUM PROJECT, the only San Francisco nonprofit organization exclusively dedicated to providing accessible legal representation for LGBT asylum seekers who are fleeing persecution due to their sexual orientation, gender identity, and/or HIV status. http://www.academyoffriends.org/

    In the lead up to the opera Harvey Milk, hitting the stage in May 2020, OPERA PARALLÈLE in partnership with the SAN FRANCISCO GAY MEN’S CHORUS presents HARVEY MILK: THE BULLHORN SERIES, four events of responsive community conversations that elevate LGBTQ voices and inspire civic activism in a new generation of voters and citizens. The first in the series, THE AMERICAN DREAM STARTS IN THE NEIGHBORHOOD, is February 11, 7 pm at the National LGBTQ Center for the Arts, 170 Valencia Street. http://operaparallele.org/bullhorn/

    Come get your N’awlins thang on at the MARDI GRAS MAMBO PARTY with KREWE DE KINQUE. Let the Good Times Roll for Mardi Gras month with San Francisco’s Krewe de Kinque charitable club! Mardi Gras Mambo will be held Saturday, February 15, from 4–7 pm at The Edge bar (4149 18th Street and Collingwood). Enjoy a $10 Beer and Soda Bust & Jambalaya Special, yummy Jell-O shots, and a fun Open Show. Proceeds will go to KDK Bal Masque XVII beneficiary COMPTON’S TRANSGENDER CULTURAL DISTRICT. Wear your best Mardi Gras gear, beads, masks, etc. & take part in the “Customer twerk Contest” for fun prizes.

    CASTRO ART WALK is February 6, 6–9 pm. Join the art walk all around the Castro for a self-guided experience through the creativity of the neighborhood. Each venue will have many works on display and for purchase. This event is free and open to the public. For the venues, see www.castroartwalk.com/events

    BAY AREA MUSICALS presents the 10-time Tony Award-nominee THE FULL MONTYBased on the cult hit film of the same name, this delightful musical runs from February 15 to March 15, at San Francisco’s Victoria Theatre (2961 16th Street). https://www.bamsf.org/the-full-monty

    Sister Dana sez, “There is further proof that the Commander in Thief is an idiot, as he released the logo for his absurd U.S. Space Force. It’s incredibly similar to the ‘Star Trek’ Star Fleet Command of the United Federation of Planets. Both are totally fiction!”

    Published on January 30, 2020