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    Sister Dana sez, “I am sad to inform my readers that this will be my last column…”

    By Sister Dana Van Iquity, Words of Wisdumb from a Fun Nun–

    Sister Dana sez, “I am sad to inform my readers that this will be my last column—as I am retiring from journalism. APRIL FOOLS! That was a joke! Got ya!” 

    APRIL FOOLS’ DAY or “All Fools’ Day” is an annual custom on 1 April consisting of practical jokes and hoaxes. Jokesters often expose their actions by shouting: “April Fools!” at the recipient. Mass media can be involved with these pranks, which may be revealed as such the following day. For instance, read the above!

    On March 8, Mayor London N. Breed joined the Department on the Status of Women (DOSW), city, and community leaders to celebrate WOMEN’S HISTORY MONTH at City Hall. “San Francisco has a long history of celebrating and elevating women’s contributions to the city,” said Mayor Breed. “Throughout the year, we celebrate the incredible women who have dedicated their lives to helping our communities. As we kick off Women’s History Month, let us remember the progress we’ve made to supporting women everywhere to create a more equitable society.”

    “What we do here in California ripples across the nation,” said Senator Scott Wiener. “So on this INTERNATIONAL WOMEN’S DAY, we must ensure our State continues to lead the fight for gender equality and abortion access. Let’s build a world where all women can thrive!”

    Disney has been dazzling audiences for 100 years—and SAN FRANCISCO GAY MEN’S CHORUS (SFGMC) was proud to celebrate their 45th anniversary with some of the most-loved music from Disney with DISNEY PRIDE IN CONCERT at Davies Symphony Hall on March 16 and 17. This two-act spectacular featured the 250 members of the chorus with clever choreography (waving fans even) and a 25-piece orchestra—combining over 40 classic and contemporary Disney songs with unique storylines that came directly from SFGMC chorus members telling their tales. My faves: “Let It Go” (Frozen), “You Can Fly” (Peter Pan); “A Whole New World” (Aladdin), and selections from Mary Poppins and Under the Sea. And what thrilled my activist heart so much in a big bad jab at anti-gay Florida Governor DeSantis was the Walt Disney Pictures Castle Logo (2006) on a big screen accompanied by SFGMC’s “When You Wish Upon a Star.” Forget Disneyland! THIS was the happiest place on earth!

    Governor DeSantis likes to brag that he’s just getting started with his rightwing agenda. “You ain’t seen nothing yet,” he has elaborated. He means it as a promise, but it is actually a threat. This is especially true for women whose abortion rights already are being dangerously curtailed and for queer and transgender students who are already being treated inhumanely. It’s particularly true for those who care about voting rights and press rights, and for those who treasure the power of books and free expression as a foundation of societal wellbeing. Sister Dana sez, “If you thought Trump was scary, be prepared to be frightened even more with DeSantis running the country! He is doubling down on Trump’s racism and homophobia!”

    More DeSantis news: the Florida Governor has appointed a pastor who traffics in anti-LGBTQ conspiracy theories to serve on the board that controls Disney’s special tax district. The Orlando-based Ron Peri has shared video discussions on YouTube asserting that homosexuality is “evil” and suggesting that tap water turns people gay, according to a CNN report. Sister Dana sez, “Thank goodness I only drink bottled water! Because otherwise I could have been turned gay. Oh the horror!”

    When Tennessee Governor Bill Lee signed a provision into law explicitly banning drag shows in public, ironically images of him doing drag circulated everywhere on social media. Sister Dana sez, “This is a stupid law—passed by an even stupider legislator!”

    But Tennessee is not alone in its dragphobia. Early in the 2023 legislative session, at least 26 bills have been introduced in 14 states by Republican legislators taking aim at drag events. Sister Dana sez, “Yo legislatorz, You bettah werk (on legislation that addresses your constituency), grrrlllz! Oh snap!!!”

    On March 18, the purple, green, and gold smoke billowed from a San Francisco Victorian—which, of course, meant that we members of KREWE DE KINQUE (the social, charitable Mardi Gras-themed club) had chosen the theme and beneficiary for our now 20th yearly BAL MASQUE XX. We gave the thrilling update during SPRING FLING at Castro’s Midnight Sun on March 18. Proceeds at this benefit went to our now-revealed 2023 beneficiary, RAINBOW WORLD FUND! BTW, our masked ball theme is 415, the beloved area code of our origin.

    As (saint) and fellow Bay Times columnist Joanie Juster puts it: The Sisters of Perpetual Indulgence “devote themselves to doing good deeds throughout the community—providing service, ministry, and outreach to the most marginalized among us. They stand up and speak out for human rights, expose bigotry and complacency with irreverent wit, and, in general, make the world a better, safer, and more joyful place.”

    But what many might not realize is that while we are busy helping others, we sometimes need help as well. Last August, the Sisters went public with the sad news of an embezzlement that was a significant blow to our finances. Despite that, we nuns found a way to dispense grants to a dozen small organizations and projects that provide direct services to underserved communities. And now we are gearing up to produce our biggest event of the year, our world-famous EASTER CELEBRATION IN THE PARK. And we needed help to do it. We needed our saints.

    THE SAINTS COME MARCHING IN was a glorious benefit for us Sisters of Perpetual Indulgence on March 19 at Castro’s Edge bar. Hosted by our beloved saints, our emcee was (saint) Mark Paladini with music by (saint) DJ Jimmy Strano. And what could be more appropriate than us nuns performing an actual live sainting ceremony for Prince Wolfe?! Supervisor Rafael Mandelman gave us Sisters a sensational toast to our activism/fundraising work for over more than four decades of service. Luscious live performers helped bring in the donations for SPI, so we nuns could continue to benefit other worthy charitable organizations. The amazing live singers included Paladini with “Come to the Cabaret” and “Rolling on the River;” Kippy Marks on electric violin with “About Damn Time;” and Donna Sachet singing the heart-wrenching “We Can Be Kind.”

    Chanteuse Carli Ozard melted our hearts with “I Wanna Dance with Somebody,” DQ extraordinaire Shiksa lipped and extremely emoted classics like Company’s “Ladies Who Lunch” and Gypsy’s “Rose’s Turn.” The Imperials were perfectly present as newly crowned SF Emperor Michael Anthony Chua belted out “Mr. Cellophane” and “Orange Colored Sky” (aka “Crash Bam Alakazam”), and newly crowned SF Empress Cameron Stiehl-Munro lip-synched to Bernadette Bohan singing Abba’s “Dancing Queen.” What a fabulous and fun night for fundraising for us fundraisers!!!

    The legendary Cockettes give the rites of spring their own unique twist as original Cockette Scrumbly Koldewyn brings you COCKETTESRES-ERECTION, a colorful musical mayhem revue featuring new songs and classic Cockettes numbers inspired by the changing season, bunnies, love, and lust. Assistant Director/performer Birdie-Bob Watt and Producer Dan Karkoska make this possible. Also performing:  Jordan  “Sunshine”  BontragerMatt Bratko, Noah Haydon, Christian HeppinstallKitten On The Keys, Carl Linkhart, Steven Satyricon, Aaren Shari-ah Smith, Bonni Suval, and more. March 23, 24, 25, 7 pm at OASIS, 298 Eleventh Street (SOMA at Folsom Street.

    Sister Dana sez, “If there ever was a time to boycott a state, now would be it. The Tennessee House of Representatives has passed a law that allows county clerks to REFUSE to marry same-sex, transgender, and mixed-race couples if they disagree with the union! In other words: Tennessee can’t really see!”

    The Opening Art Reception for Hunter Harvey‘s “GO WEST” is on March 24 at Schlomer Haus Gallery, 2128 Market Street, 5–9 pm. Many works in this show reimagine iconic characters from American pop culture. Through painting, these characters are seen as queer heroes navigating their own personal journeys toward a better world out West.

    Based on the original 1934 play of the same name by George S. Kaufman and Moss Hart, MERRILY WE ROLL ALONG runs from March 23–April 9 at San Francisco’s Gateway Theatre (215 Jackson Street). Featuring such musical gems as “Not a Day Goes By,” “Our Time,” and “Like It Was”, this musical masterpiece explores the cost of success, and the sacrifices we make along the way. Music and lyrics by Stephen Sondheim

    Sister Dana sez, “Making our democracy even less safe, Kevin McCarthy has appointed major MAGA monster Marjorie Taylor Greene to act as speaker pro tempore. Bring on the elephants, and let the circus begin!”

    CASTRO ART MART, that features LGBTQ artists, live music, and drag performances every 1st Sunday of the month, is on April 2, Noe Street @Market Street (next to the Lookout Bar) 11–5 pm.

    INTERNATIONAL TRANSGENDER DAY OF VISIBILITY is an annual event occurring on March 31 dedicated to celebrating transgender people and raising awareness of discrimination faced by transgender people worldwide, as well as a celebration of their contributions to society.

    FABULOSA BOOKS presents a reading by Alo Johnson of “Am I Trans Enough?” on March 28, 7–9 pm, 489 Castro Street. This book digs deep into internalized transphobia and the historical narratives that fuel it. It unveils what happens after you come out, or begin questioning living as a trans person, in a world that works against you.

    San Francisco Playhouse brings the beloved board game CLUE to the stage in a hilarious farce-meets-murder mystery. Murder and blackmail are afoot as six mysterious guests arrive at Boddy Manor for an unusual dinner party. When their host becomes suddenly deceased, they all become suspects, and race to find the killer—as the body count rises. Based on the cult-hit 1985 film that was inspired by the classic Hasbro board game, Clue is an uproarious physical comedy “whodunit.” You can try to solve the mystery nightly now through April 22. Skulk away at 450 Post Street.

    Sister Dana sez, “After all the exposure of devilish lies on Fox News TV, their show entitled ‘Fox and Friends’ should be properly renamed ‘Fox and Fiends.'”

    Words of Wisdumb from a Fun Nun
    Published on March 23, 2023