GAYDAR: My So-Called Life

BY AARON STELLA Welcome back, folks. This chapter of my life story marks the eleventh of its kind. Upon each recounting, I am required to dredge up buried memories that I rarely visit. Recently, however, the impact of my past has become gruesomely clear. There is much left to be done, from what I can see—but I shall be better for it in the end. For those of you who haven’t been following along, you can read the whole story beginning to end after the jump. But for now, onward and upward. So, picking up where I left off last, […]

REVIEW: Curio Theater Company’s The Weir

[Photo by KYLE CASSIDY] BY AARON STELLA defines a “Weir” as: A low dam built across a river to raise the level of water upstream, typically to power a millrace. Fair enough. “A drink precedes a story” (Irish Proverb). Ah, now we’re getting somewhere. In either case, water the humble or water the enthraller runs in grooves carved by forces interacting, much like the vague exchanges that occur in conversation. Now imagine an unadorned Irish pub in the small town of Carrick, where a loyal few frequent, and each comes with a weighty pocket’s worth of stories. The jovial […]

THEATER: Where ‘The Weir’ Things Are

BY AARON STELLA Forget the fact that we were born with two ears and one mouth; let’s get real people, homo-sapiens love to yak; dark corners of smoky pubs especially included (oh how I miss thee, smoky pub). And supernatural folk tales usually make for amusing fare. But the questions stands, as it always will: what’s up with the story and its teller? Starting tomorrow, The Curio Theater Company will be  forking out the insides of raconteurs and their confab (pub-life included) in their production of Irish playwright Conor McPherson’s “The Weir.” As an insufferable yakker myself, I had to […]

GAYDAR: Octoberfist VI Reviewed

BY AARON STELLA GAYDAR EDITOR The Dumpster players are, in short, a mad mob togged in trash-picked threads bent on inciting worldwide pandemonium. Nobody is safe; everybody is ripe for parody. I have attended almost every DP performance in the past year, but it wasn’t until last night’s “Octoberfist VI” celebration, the sixth of the DPs biannual fist-fest of Pan-European song and dance, that I witnessed their awesome power. Hail Satan! And despite the supervening night-o-da-Phillies, once the game ended and crowds flooded the streets, the majority of B&B’s patrons remained. Incredible. Again, another testament to theDP’s patent reputation. Contained […]

GAYDAR: Dumpster Diving

“What are doing tonight?” “We’ll, I’m going to see “Octoberfist” down at Bob and Barbara’s. Wanna Come?” “Whoa! What? Bob and Barbara’s does porno viewings now? When did this start?” “No silly Billy: It’s the Dumpster Players—you know, that wacky trash-glitz drag troupe that shoves their prickly stick of parody up society’s bunghole every month?” “Oh yeah! Those dudes!” “Yeah, well, it’s their sixth “Octoberfist” celebration, complete with vivacious drag queens, heinous costumery and flamboyantly flaming back-up dancers flailing in lip-sync to Pan-European techno-balladry, from countries like Norway, Moldovia, Bosnia-Herzegovina, France, Germany and Greece. Also, The Little Italian immigrant girl […]

ARTSY: Anybody Home?

BY AARON STELLA CITYSPACE, a Philadelphia-based real estate company, will open its doors to its first ever series of art shows starting this weekend with rising-star artist Mat Tomezsko with his installation “Those Ghosts.” A real estate company might not be the first business you’d imagine sponsoring an art show. CITYSPACE, however, is different in that it realizes that there is more to real estate than the mere buying and selling of properties; it’s about community development, supporting local businesses, making smart uses of technology, investing in green alternatives, and most importantly, providing someone with the largest possession they’ll ever […]

GAYDAR: We Could Be Heroes

BY AARON STELLA The Delaware Valley Legacy Fund will be holding their Third-Annual “Heroes” party, a fundraiser to honor leaders and allies to the LGBTI community and its causes, this Friday, September 25th at the F.U.E.L House. The DVLF is an organization that seeks to encourage philanthropy and grant making to support the needs of the LGBTI and straight-allied community. Since their inception in 1993, DVLF has appropriated their assets garnered from donations, endowments and fundraisings to further the cause of civil rights, improve health services, support arts and culture and provide scholarships for the LGBTI and straight-allied community. This […]

GAYDAR: My Life In The Ghost Of Bush 3

BY AARON STELLA Whew! We’ve had some hot and heavy posts lately, haven’t we? For the benefit of those who haven’t been following along, here’s a little recap: I’ve been wrongfully committed to a psych-ward by my parents. Not to mention, this particular ward was meant more to be a lockup for homicidal and suicidal teenagers, neither of which I was at the time. I have just watched the ward bouncers haul off my roommate to solitary confinement for harming himself, which involved him ripping out his pubic hair and rubbing it in his face to near asphyxiation. And for […]

GAYDAR: My Life In The Ghost Of Bush 2

BY AARON STELLA This time around in GAYDAR we’re revealing the climactic conclusion of our last life story post, which told of my plans to emancipate myself from my Christian-crazed parents and begin life anew. Here’s a brief recap: My family and I moved to Alabama in 1999  to escape the impending apocalypse of Y2K, which, as apocalypses go, turned out to be a big disappointment. Later I was kicked out of high school for a clandestine dalliance I had with a schoolmate, then out of my house six months later. Now, living with my friend’s family, the magnitude of […]

HAPPY ENDING: A Skate Park Grows In Fishtown

BY AARON STELLA On July 25th, Friends of Pop’s Playground, the NKCDC (New Kensington Community Development Corporation), The Department of Recreation, Exit Skate Shop and the Fishtown and New Kensington community will be holding a ribbon-cutting ceremony to mark the official opening of a new skate park, Pop’s Skate Park, in Pop’s Playground, located at Hazard and Collins Streets in Fishtown. Until 2007, the playground has remained closed to the public on account of the city revoking its funding and Edward Griffith’s, the playground’s last caretaker, retirement in 1996. But with the combined efforts of the aforementioned groups to restore […]

GAYDAR: The Trouble With QFest

BY AARON STELLA GAYDAR EDITOR With a snappy new name that aspires to put the the non-gay among us at ease, a fattened marketing budget, and walk-ons by gay cinema stars (Bruce Campbell, Sharon Gless, Chad Allen) and straight power brokers (hello Mayor Nutter!), QFest seems destined to please everyone — everyone, that is, except for the rank and file of Philly’s gay community. Consider these man-in-a-gay-bar responses when the topic of QFest was raised by yours truly: “I don’t bother any more. None of the shows have any substance.” “I went this year, and was more disappointed than usual.” […]

GAYDAR EXTRA: It’s Dumpsta Diving Time Again

Well, it’s that time of the month again. Oh boy, that didn’t come out right. What I meant to say is that Philadephia’s favorite trash-glitz drag troupe, the Dumpsta Players are putting on their monthly showcase of dirty, nasty, salacious satire. This month, it’s “Dial C for Chardonna!” Philly-gone-bad relationships with a Hitchcock lemony-twist of menace and horror. Chardonna Jenkins has been a little careless with her extra-erotic dalliances, as her bellicose beau, Rocco Rigatoni, caught her making whoopee one night with another guy. On a wave of rage, Rocco strikes a deal with Psycho’s Norman Bates to kill each […]

The First Time I Got High…

BY AARON STELLA My sheltered, cloistered-in-Christianity upbringing left many teenage temptations unbeknownst to me, particularly the culture of ganja. Had I not seen an episode Ghost Writer, I doubt I would have ever been able to recognize a joint. That is, until I smoked one. Needless to say, my lack of worldly exposure left me with no narcotic outlets (although in retrospect, those cathartic pubescent jerk-off sessions were so intense at times that they easily rivaled the sedation concomitant with the mightiest of bong rips. So life without marijuana was still peaceful—even with a chafed dick). Fast forward to the […]