Now that Anthony Weiner has officially jumped into NYC's mayoral race, get ready for plenty of headlines like this one. A lot of gay people and progressives in general seem disenchanted with Christine Quinn, who was once thought all but already elected, so he or Bill de Blasio might stand a chance.
Participating in a recent forum on how to effectively market at-home HIV testing, I got a $200 gift card. Not wanting to spend it on a hustler, I instead gave $150 of that to The Daily Show co-creator Lizz Winstead's Planned Parenthood, I Am Here for You fundraiser that happened here in NYC last night—and it was not only a good investment but also a good investment.
Joan Walsh & Lizz Winstead
I showed up at 6:30PM at the Gramercy for the VIP reception to find a handful of non-famous women spiked with the evening's famous females—Winstead, Salon editor Joan Walsh, Sandra Bernhard and Lisa Lampanelli. I was the only dude for the longest time in a room filled with women and several womyn.
Adding Sandra Bernhard to the mix
Lisa Lampanelli (L) and Judy Blume (R) join a mom and her baby, Rosie
My new friends with the A-list
All together now!
Talking to a few attendees about the art of the photo op, I figured out we were supposed to meet and greet the stars on our own—there was no formal line happening. This makes it a bit awkward because you don't really want to shoehorn yourself between Winstead and Bernhard when they're engrossed in a conversation about their bodies/their selves. Especially when you're announcing that you blog at something called Boy Culture.
Oh, Fudge! Fawning over Judy Blume
But it was totally fine and the women were absolutely gracious and eager to pose for photos and chat. Winstead is the ultimate feminist to me—unswerving on principle, unbothered by political correctness, utterly hilarious. She was in boots and a dress that looked macramaed from a distance. She reminds me of Laurie Metcalf and Barrie Longfellow.
Both Christine Quinn (facinglots of criticism lately) and Tom Duane have stated they have private assurances from enough lawmakers (at least 32) to ensure passage of marriage-equality by the New York Senate. However,NY1's poll of senators is far less encouraging—if 13 senators are either "undecided" or "wouldn't say" when asked, that means 12 of them (or some of those currently claiming they "would vote 'no'") must vote for the measure in order for it to pass.
Of her visits with undecided and leaning-against lawmakers, she says:
"It was amazing how much openness there was. We just all have to create a moment for them to step forward. So I really think it is going to happen this month, before the legislative session is over." (Our enemy, Maggie Gallagher of NOM—a woman who took cash from the Bush Administration in exchange for writing what they wanted her to write—says, "I don't think they will be passing a gay marriage bill this session.")
Also of interest is Quinn's pragmatic take on President Obama's position on marriage:
"He's not perfect on this issue and I want him to be perfect. And I'm fairly certain that pretty soon he will be perfect on this issue and what we just have to do is keep talking to him and keep educating him and keep working on him."
Meanwhile, the prez was in New York to see Joe Turner's Come and Gone with his wife (Republicans are bitching about the cost, as if Bush's jaunts to Crawford were free or something) and I actually had a ticket in the orchestra purchased...then the agent called to say they didn't have the ticket after all and they'd refund my money. Would have been fun to attend with the first couple and report on what happened inside...