Dana Does Dayton!
by Dana Sintell
Click on the titles below to read the various articles written by Miss Sintell!
Have you ever noticed how every gay man thinks he's a movie critic? Well I am...at least for this article...and when I picked up the recent newspapers, I realized that many critics saw different movies, or movies differently, than I did! So, what did I think of this year's flix? I'll tell ya!
The Top 5 Hits: I am anything but a Julia Roberts Fan, but I feel 'Erin Brokovich' put her in a whole new light! The movie was real, honest..and so was she!
I can't help thinking about how much I loved 'Billy Elliott'. Gay or not, this movie says what everyone thinks...'Let Me Be Myself!' A Magical Moment!
'Quills' was mesmerizing! Oh My God! I am turning into a big Kate Winslet fan...which scares me a little...but she is dynamite. And who can take their eyes off of Joaquin!
Are you sitting down for this one? Laugh if you want...but 'Bring it On' was FABULOUS! Fun, endearing and bitchy, it was night of drag without the queens! I enjoyed this movie...no thinking, no political statement, just enjoyable!
and lastly, I have to give a Bow-Wow-WOW to 'Best of Show'. This movie is totally unscripted and laods of fun! I laughed, and attimes sat wondering how in God''s Name the stars did such great work without one written word. The Old Man still flashes in my mind...and his wife is a trip! Fun time!
Now the worst:
I really wanted to like "State and Main" but I couldn't. This movie has all the right ingredients, but lacks the pizzazz to make it memorable film. A lot of hype over a very little movie!
Say what you want, 'Cast Away' ranks right up there as the dumbest movie ever. You are forced to watch a movie hoping for a happy ending...the only happy part was the credits! Dumb-Ola! Tom Hanks...go back to Philadelphia!
I had a love hate relationship with the 'X-Men'. I loved the campiness, but I hated the plot! Halle Berry is till a star waiting to shine, and many other stars made this an interesting sight to behold. Lets try a good story next time.
Jim Carrey irritates me. But, the Grinch kind of stole my heart....until I met the WHOs. What was with these freaks. When I was a kid the WHOs were good, loving creatures, not cynical pains in the ass. Sure CindyLou will steal your heart, unfirtunately, the rest of the WHOs needed one. Don't mess with Suess!
and THE ABSOLUTE WORST...'Dr. T and the Women'? Why was this movie made? Farrah was fabulous as a looney tunes...but that's just Farrah! What a waste for such great people! I sat through every second of this movie praying to good that something would happen...anything! It never did! This just goes to show you, pretty people can make ugly movies!
I must say that the feedback on the movies of the year article drew little disagreement....However, I was asked a couple of times why Gladiator wasn't included. In my opinion, the movie truly is excellent...but I am on an anti-Russell Crowe kick ever since the Meg Ryan mess. So, I'm sure he's Glad-he-are-her, but poor, poor Dennis Quaid!
Now on to FOOD! (My favorite thing!) Dayton draws a lot of criticism about its lack of good eateries, but that's just not the case! The problem is, we are over-run with chain restaurants. Give us a break! Gay men love a local establishment, and there are few that keep us in mind! Here is the list of those that I find most appropriate for our lifestyle!
1. Golden Nugget - The Keowee location on Sunday Morning is the perfect pick-me-up after a long night out! The staff and owners are so very friendly and love to take care of us. You will always find plenty of gay men and women there...and there's a great comfort in numbers!
2. Café Potage - Thank God we have a nice little bar/restaurant in the Historic Districts' Area. So many of us live in the districts, and Potage provides us with great food, great service, ambiance and liquor. The perfect combination! Very friendly!
3. Pizzeria Uno's on Main - The theater provides the right atmosphere for the gay crowd. The service is always gay-friendly, if not gay themselves. The bar is frequented by the true urban dweller, and they understand us!
4. Thomato's - Some Saturday night, have a seat at the bar and just take it all in. Thomato's is a class act and good clean fun! The food us usually a hit and the servers are always kind and smiley! Do yourself a big favor, drink beer, the wine prices can be outrageous!
5. Pacchia/Jazz Room - The Jazz room is the gayest-straight bar I've ever been in. Just last week, I spotted men kissing. (Oh My!) Pachhia has always been a gay hang out, and when you get a good dinner its perfect! Hold hands and have dessert...I mean, who care here!
6. Chipotle on Brown - So, the menu is limited. So, the decor is a bit too predictable...the UD boys are worth it. And they come in and out all day! YUM!
7. Chin's - For the Chinese food lover, Chin's gives you the friendliest spot to eat. The owners are so sweet! In the summer, the patio is a must. Chin's will make sure you have one-hung-low when you are finished....your stomach that is!
8. Blue Moon - Pricy at times, this restaurant has delicious food. Blue Moon is the big city place tucked into a small town. The elite of Dayton eat here, and God knows they love the queers! Great place for a date, or a large group to laugh and drink!
9. Christopher's - The only suburban place to make my list. Kettering's answer to Yellow Spring's type foods. Christophers's is home-made, friendly and inexpensive. I highly recommend you ask for Leah...she's a fantastic waitress, and loves Aour people!@
10. The Winds - This place is a Mecca to the gay tongue! Filled with lesbians and gay propaganda, you might as well be in San Francisco. The Winds has been a must on people's lists for years. Just take out a loan before you go. The sandwiches are a fortune!
And now the not-so-recommended:
11. Chain Restaurants - sure they employ us like slaves and many of us meet friends by working there, but the problem is, chain restaurants don't care about you anymore than they do the next guy. You are cattle to them, and they need you to feed at there corral! Do yourself a favor, support local restaurants!
12. Cracker Barrel - You know the story!
13. Damon's - There is too much testosterone in this joint to relax. The sports are too loud on the big screens and the women have permed and dyed hair. EWWW!
14. Old Country Buffet - I'm sure you have heard the stories about this place, but its not so much the staff as it is the clientele. White trash as a tendency to hate our kind. There's nothing more nasty than scooping up your feed beside a toothless, sneezing eastender!
15. Hooter's - Okay, maybe the lesbians like this place, but what's in it for the gay man?
I had a lot of you asking me why I included Pizzeria Uno's and Chipotle in my faves, when they are both chain restaurants. (something I despise!) Well, I was trying to make the point that Chipotle was for the UD boys and Uno's for the Victoria stars! I accept all the criticism...now on with mine!
Here it is June! Pride indeed! So, I've been around this city doing shows for nearly 13 years. Maybe its time I let you in on the good girls and the not-so-good girls on the Dayton stage! (I will focus mainly on the names we all know, though there are many out there, and a new one is born and dies in every show!) I will limit my comments to 10! (I could go on for days honey!!!)
Amanda Kane - Look, I have to tell you that Amanda never gave a shit if Dana Sintell lived or died...and I think she feels that way about most! I have been fascinated by Amanda's career...up, down, down, down, up! She's like the energizer bunny! (Anyone have an animal trap!) Amanda loves controversy, she thrives on it. Obviously Amanda has what it takes to survive she's still here long after many have called it quits.
Bonnie Blake - Perhaps one of the nicest people I've met in drag. I always wanted Bonnie to get pissed and start smacking the shit out of people. Bonnie is reliable. You know what to expect from her...and that's relieving. She's not a moody, self-righteous boy in a dress. Ahhhh, how refreshing!
Jade - I have to include Jade in this article. There's a great void in the drag world without her. She's truly beautiful, and really has entertainment talents! I always thought Jade would be the one to set the world on fire! Despite the rumors and truths that surround her career, I believe the thing that hurt her most was her! Jade was her own worst enemy...and for all of us, I hope she learns that and becomes Miss USA like she should!
Ashley West - I have to tell you, Ashley has long been someone I feel you know where you Stand with! She pulls no punches! Sure, she's been around forever, and thank GOD for that! Ashley is a professional. She's classic, contemporary, funny and reflective. She has been Dayton's shining light for over a decade...no easy task! There are a million people out there with a million reasons not to like her. I'm not one of them. I respect her staying power and wish her 50 more years of fast spins and dazzling crowns!
Samantha Rollins - I won't lie to you, I got off to a bad start with this one! Sam is an interesting case to study. She will do anything in the world for you, but don't mess with her cause then its OVER! I learned that Sam was probably the most unlikely friend I would make! She really wants to be part of it all, but she knows what's right for her and what isn't. To this day, I think Sam may be the most sophisticated of the Dayton Girls!
April Reign - April is a sweetheart, though there lurks a bitch with a temper in there as well. I have seen the best and worst of April...within a ten-minute period! Fabulous to newcomers, April takes the time to explain the ins and outs of drag. She also lets the boogers know that they hold no promise. You gotta respect that!
Sinthia D. Meanor - Oh go ahead and say... she scares ya sometimes. And she loves it! Ms. D. Meanor is like a breath of fresh air, always pushing the envelope. If you only knew how many times we laughed our asses off in the basement thinking about her next stunt! People that don't appreciate don't see the art in drag. She can be nasty...and we tip her for it!
Scarlet Fever B I'll never forget the night I got to crown her queen at Celebrity. She was
shocked...really shocked. I think Scarlet does more than drag... she makes people feel good! That's a hard task. She's always befriending the audience and they feel part of everything she does. That's a true queen...regardless of the numbers you are doing!
Ginger St. James - All right, so she's very similar to myself... kind of an on and off performer. Let me tell you, the girl gives it her all and like myself, sometimes her all and all that much! But, Ginger knows to laugh at herself. She never looses sight of the fact that, Goddamit she's a he! Those that laugh at themselves, laugh the hardest!
And last but not least (at least for now)
Sashay Lorez - Why can't this little dynamo ever get what she deserves! She's professional, creative, energetic, and exciting! The problem is, Sashay needs to get angry! She needs to walk out on that stage and say to the world, I'm better than any of you skags, now off my stage bitches! But, she's too diplomatic for that! I don't think she's ever been appreciated for what she is...and that's a sad story!
Well, I look forward to your comments! Write to me at Sintell@aol.com. Don't be afraid to tell me what you really think...everyone does!
I receive many e-mails about my picks and pans of Dayton's Drag. I will respond by saying that If I included every girl you would all have me include, the article would have been sixteen pages long! It is my belief that we have too many boys in this city that think they are divas. And I ain't about to write about them! Now on with the article!
So, Pride in Dayton was a huge success this year. Courthouse Square was alive and bouncy with Fun and family....what a great day for the Dayton Community. And although there are some that will have a hissy about it all, let them wallow in their hatred, party on people!
The dinner at the convention center may have been the smoothest and best yet. It was nice to see the Youthquest members there. It is great to now that pride starts much earlier in today's society than it did when I was a girl! I think it is vital that more and more Daytonians show their faces at the dinner. If Rhine McLin can be there, so can you!
Traveled to Columbus for Pride last weekend and I must tell you, the capital city knows how to cover all bases. One thing that makes the difference is the bars up there aren't in it for profit\, they are in it to say thanks to the community that is making them rich! They sponsor everything....and that helps all have a good time! In light of that, here are my Top 10 suggestions for Dayton Pride 2002:
1. No cover charges in June! Come on, One month to give us a break would be a great gesture!
2. A play at the Victoria for our crowd only. Certainly a theater would love to say 'thanks' to our community!
3. A huge party at one of the area salons.....square one did it once, but its a great way to say thanks for all the queer hair on the floor!
4. A business expo at Courthouse Square of all the gay-owned businesses We could all use the publicity!
5. A volleyball game featuring are drag queens. Columbus plays softball, and Cincinnati does play shit....why not play volleyball in the sand...in heels!!!!
6. A Day at the Art Institute for US ONLY. Why not make Cafe Monet into the newest Gay eatery!
7. A Bus trip to Columbus on Pride Weekend there...paid for by Dayton's bars. Yippee!
8. A Bake-off. That's right a bake-off at one of the bars. We can all come up with something fabulous....and queers love to eat!
9. A Dayton Dragons versus Dayton's Rubi Girls in a Homerun Derby. Wouldn't you love to see Willy Mo Pena up against Anita Beer!!
10. Finally, an outdoor concert somewhere, with a well loved singer! We could be outdoors with the ones we love, relaxing or dancing together. Those nights are the ones you never forget.
All right Pride Committee...a list of ideas for you! Now, lets' turn it out next year!!!
All right Lesbians and Girls, Its time we update you on the rules of fashion...or tell you for the first time. Many people travel to our fine city and leave saying, "What year are they in anyway?" So here's some helpful hints:
1. Shiny Clothes - okay, shine's fine...but not when every piece you are wearing glimmers. Enough with the glittery stuff too. Classic men look best when they are what's sparkling underneath their clothes...not the clothes themselves!
2. Tucked in Sweaters - STOP IT! If a piece of clothing is used for outerwear, don't put it in! Why does Dayton still tuck her sweaters, especially when it pronounces your belly. Quit it now!
3. Jewelry - all right, so you can afford it! That's great. Now, stop wearing it out all at once. You cheapen jewelry when you wear a lot of it! Understated always wins here!
4. Gym shoes -- now this one may piss plenty of you off, but you really shouldn't wear gym shoes anywhere but in a gym! HUM? Gym shoes - gym.
5. Eyeglasses/Sunglasses - Here is the golden rule boys and girls: THE OLDER YOU ARE, THE SMALLER YOUR FRAMES SHOULD BE! These people with huge frames in their fifties are drawing attention to their need for glasses. No, no, no! This rule goes double for sunglasses. When you are on a beach, you don't want to look like some alien that just landed a spacecraft. Your frame is to highlight your face, not the other way around!
6. Unsightly Hair - Ewwwwww. I don't understand why more men are not aware of their hair problems?! Please, clean up your eyebrows...you are not an animal! The nose, oh the nose.....clippy, clippy! Your ears too while you are at it! And please, only one haircut per head! Lesbians are notorious for this! Lastly, if it was a trend in hair 5 years ago, your hair looks five years old!
7. Sandals with Socks? - What the hell? I understand why straight men do this....they don't know any better...but you do!
8. Body Type Clothing Choices - Now, I know this sounds rude, but muscle shirts are for muscles! Speedos are not pleasing on many of us. And, if you feel uncomfortable in it...we feel more uncomfortable looking at you!
9. Matching Your Shoes - Shoes should always match your belt. Always. Always. Always. Don't even try to play games with 'close to it colors'. Always!
10. AND LAST BUT MOST IMPORTANTLY- White Sock Syndrome - There are still some people that wear white socks with their dress shoes...and jeans? Listen, the rule says - socks should match one of two things, they should blend perfectly into the color of the pant, or they should blend perfectly into the color of the shoe! Are you wearing white pants or white shoes? NO? Then stop it! you look totally dated darling!
Now, e-mail me with your nasty remarks...you know I live for them! Sintell@aol.com!
Well, many of you fired off about my fashion article. Mostly, you agreed that Dayton has a lot of 'bad dressers!" Hopefully they got the message! Now on with this month's article:
It seems like everyone wants to get married, and settle down these days. I have had e-mails about the best dates....with fall coming up, its time to think about big romance, big sweaters, and big...well y'know! Anyways, here are some suggestions for the date you've always wanted to have!
a. THE LONG WALK: pick your place-Yellow Springs/Clifton Gorge is perfect. Take that long walk and just open up about who you are...what you want...and be sure to listen to them on the way! (If its NOT going well, push the son-of-a-bitch in the gorge!)
b. THE VICTORIAN: grab tickets to see some of the Victoria's upcoming season. Great shows this year. Wear a clean-smelling cologne, and be prepared to take in a cup of coffee afterwards. (If the date sucks, grab coffee at home...alone!)
c. THE GREEK: you know, the Greek Festival is becoming quite the queer hang-out. Have your date meet you there! Make sure you wear a denim shirt, or flannel, in case there's a chill. You can wear a stronger scent, you are outdoors! Don't drink too much too early. Make him Greek Dance with you...if he's all for it, you've got a winner. ( If he refuses, take religious asylum in the church!)
d. THE NEON LIGHT: With the Neon Movies expanding, there will tons more room for all the fags! Sit high up in the theater. Place your hand on the arm rest dividing you. Talk intelligently about films....stay quiet if your favorite movie was "Dude Where's My Car!" Buy a large popcorn and ask if he would like to share a large drink. (Saves Money!) When the movie ends, tell him LISTEN to him give his take on the film and build up his opinion! (Even if its ridiculous.) If he's hot, take him home and do him! (If you want this date over, tell him the movie reminded you of your most recent bout with V.D.)
e. THE ARTSY/FARTSY: One thing people forget is how great our Art Institute is. Study up on your artists and wow him with your knowledge as you meander through the museum. Occasionally tell him that you would love to see museums in bigger cities! (HINT!) When you get to the Modern exhibition..the 'weird room'...sort of lean into him and say, 'Hm? What do you make of that?' If he answers with style, smile and know you got one! (If he's an idiot, tell him there's a fabulous Van Gogh in the bathroom, and as he makes his way there, you make
your way out!)
Those are five simple suggestions. Now, here are things we shouldn't do!
1. Football Games - Your idea of tight end is different girls!
2. Chili Cook-Offs - When you hear 'add more spice' it doesn't mean move your hips ladies!
3. Videos at Home - There is no escape when he's in your house. YIKES!
4. Drag Pageants - It's a huge turn-off when you start yelling, "That Bitch Should Have Won! Did you see how her heels matched that dress?"
5. Orgies - Never take your date to an orgy....unless you are hung like a donkey, richer than Trump, or you are dropping him off!
Until Next Time Gang....Keep those e-mails coming. I LOVE THEM!
I want to thank all of you for your responses to last month's report on great fall dates. They were funny and some of you actually had even better ideas. (write your own damn column!) I did receive a note from one reader asking why I thought I had all the answers...'you have been around forever, and have never had anything clever to say' they wrote. Well, I say to you, keep reading. Obviously you do read all my words to know I never have anything clever to say!
In the wake of the incident in New York, Pennsylvania and Washington D.C., I think it is best to turn this column to those gay brothers and lesbian sisters that lost their lives.
Many people say that the gay community makes up between 10 and 13% of our nation's population. That puts the number of lost brothers and sisters at around 780. 780 creative, loving, interesting U.S. citizens who lost their lives to hate. Hate not because of their oreintation. Hate because they were Americans.
We are living in strange times. The focus of hate used to be African-Americans, Jewish-Americans, Gay-Americans...and now the focus is Americans. All of us. Somehow caught up in a world that views our prosperity as something to hate...something to question....something to kill.
Its hard to respect our country at times. Its hard to love a country that at times has said 'no' to us. But, we are Americans...part of the only country that allows people total freedom. Freedom to choose our God. Freedom to speak our minds. Freedom to love whoever we choose. Freedom to be whatever we want.
Think of the 780 people who fell victim because they were given those rights, here in this great country. As we move forward and time passes, let's not forget this time....9/11/01. It truly changed everything. It threw us all together...as Americans.
I am sure, as you probably are, that a day will come when votes will be taken on gay rights, gay marriage or gay adoption. And we may lose that vote. But for the 780 people that lost their lives, they were part of a country where at least that vote could be taken.
Stand up, proudly, as a gay man or a lesbian. Stand up and let the world know you love someone of the same gender. Stand up and show them that we are all in this together.
Stand up as an American!
Gays and Lesbians have a serious problem. WE want so badly to have role-models and a place in our society, we at times accept mediocrity. What am I talking about...you may ask. Well, look at what's happening on television, movies and other media. Gay is suddenly profitable and hip...but is it good for us?
I will say that I feel "Six Feet Under" and "Will and Grace" do their best to present something that people can digest and appreciate. But, get real! Will is no more gay than Heater the Dragon. He has few dates, never tricks out and gets along with every straight person known to man. Its not right...or real. Jack is refreshing, but is a character of a character of a gay man. Its laughed up to make it easier to swallow. Not fair....but funny.
Then there is a show that many people thought would be the saving grace of gay television.....'Queer as Folk." I can't even swallow this shit. Who are these people? Are gays really drug addicted, corn-holing, emotionless lapdancers. Well, if you believe this script they are. Suddenly, a show that is made for our people that tells us we are not a culture, we are a counter-culture. That's damaging...entertaining or not.
We have Ellen, trying again to find an audience with a show where she tries to mix small town thought with big city humor. It works, one out of every 10 jokes. I love Ellen. I think she's done a lot for gay people. My only problem is, Ellen has to know that people want her to make fun of herself. That's what they love about her....I laugh at it myself....but why?
Maybe I am getting bitter in my older age. Maybe I want more and better things for our society. That leads me to this: By now, all of us have heard the story of Mark Bingham, the gay rugby player that was on that tragic flight in Pennsylvania. He was one of the heroes that tried to stop the hijacking. Reports were everywhere about his heroic attempt to save other American lives. That alone is wonderful. So, lets be careful. Suddenly we want to scream from the rooftops, "A gay man was a hero!" "Mark Bingham is our savior!" WHOA! Slow Down!
After looking at how the media portrays us on television, movies, etc....I got to thinking. They're laughing at us again...finding our desperate plea for a hero silly. And perhaps, rightfully so. Mark Bingham is everyone's hero...everyone's. Not ours. And we need to put that into focus. Just as we do the media's portrayal of us. Jack is not a gay icon, he's America's sweetheart. Will isn't our leader on the small screen, he's a character people like. Ellen is our Saint sent to deliver our message...she's a stand-up comic. And certainly, 'Queer as Folk' doesn't tell our life's tale.
We have to start to draw the line in both instances. Our role models will not be made through television or movies. Our heroes will not come from men that fall doing what they though was best at the time as Mark Bingham did. Our heroes will come from those of us that show the world we are just like they are. We love, care, cry, hurt and need just as much as they do.
Gay isn't exceptional.....it should simply be accepted!
Be careful what you wish for, my friends. I was recently seated at a bar, here in our fine city, when the topic of gay marriage came up. Someone asked me after being with Brent fo 14 years now, didn't I favor Gay Marriage? After all, what we were doing was marriage, why not make it legal? Stop right there! Anything legal in this country comes with a huge price and marriage is no exception!
I for one am not a big proponent of any kind of legalized marriage. I believe if people want to stand up in front of all of their friends and say 'hey, I love this person' they should have a right to do so. When we get into signing documents so that the lawyers and other would be money-makers stand in the wings frothing at the mouth for future funds, I say why bother!
I know, I know....tax breaks. Well, if you are in your marriage to get some kind of compensation on your taxes, your not in it for the right reasons! No other country in the world would use marriage as a carrot for the tax refund rabbit, except in the great USA. That tax break is really just a way of saying conform to our society and we'll hand you some moolah!
God forbid that we not have the same rights as everybody else. Isn't that what all the equal rights and pride activists are screaming about. If it were up to me, I'd say, don't push too hard, because heterosexual America is in a bigger mess than we are! Their marriages have led to the highest divorce rate of any country, causing lawyers to have a log jam, and judges to miss out on important decisions. Marriage by any other name in this country is DOLLARS! Not SENSE!
Alright, alright...I love my husband! We've shared a home for 14 years. We've been together through sickness and health. We've loved each other through better and worse. We=ve suffered through the richer and poorer thing too! Yeah, yeah, yeah...
Now, why do I need a piece a paper, a tax form and a divorce lawyer to say all that for me! I don't. And to all of you ready to kill me for expressing these views, I say, wrap your arms around significant other and tell the world you love them too.....only leave Uncle Sam out of it!
Until Next Time.....