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Bay Area Folks- Please Attend on Oct 1st or please consider donating today!

Everyone on my list has heard about how sick my partner Fran is...she is a total bad ass community activist and brilliant writer...we need to raise at least $5000 to complete the second portion of her treatment. She has given so much to our various communities over the course of her life time, and now we get to give back! I know times are hard right now...but seriously every dollar adds up. Please consider donating today and for those of you that have thank you sooooo much!!! Really every bit helps and gives us hope that she will beat this.

Bay Area Benefit
     * you can also visit the silent auction at  hp_army_auction 
The Hella Pretty Army: A Benefit for Fran Varian October 1, 2008
Doors at 7pm, show at 7:30pm
$10 - 20 (no one turned away for lack of funds - but it IS a benefit)
Center for Sex and Culture
1519 Mission St
San Francisco, CA 94103
(415) 552-7399

The Hella Pretty Army: A Benefit for Fran Varian

On October 1st an army of San Francisco's revolutionary and passionate
writers, musicians, performers and art makers will come together at
the San Francisco Center for Sex and Culture to throw a big ass party
and benefit for Fran Varian.

Poet, activist and organizer Fran Varian has spent her life creating
art, and poetry that is intense, powerful and a politcal punch in gut.
Giving voice to the women, the fighters, the poor, the queer, the
disenfranchised, Fran has spent her artistic life fighting for
people's rights and voices. In addition to her art - she has also
spent her entire life as a health worker, counselor and activist for
the rights of women around health care and reproductive freedom.
Ironically it is a lack of access to health care that has brought Fran
to a serious health condition. Recently diagnosed with late stage Lyme
disease, Fran is literally battling for her life after 14 years of
mis-diagnosis allowing this disease to destroy her system. At this
stage of the illness there is only one type of treatment that has
shown positive results and this benefit is fighting for the funds to
ensure that Fran can complete the full cycle of treatment.

With performers including Mark Growden, Lauren Wheeler, Vagabondage,
Meliza Bañales , Katrina James, Heathen Machinery, Steven Schwartz,
Gina de Vries, Leah Lakshmi Piepzna-Samarasinha, Storm Florez and
more, a silent auction that includes one of a kind art, couture
fashion, handmade chapbooks and more, plus rumors of an onsite kissing
booth the night is sure to be a celebration of life, art and the power
of people coming together to help someone that has dedicated their
life to helping the community.

If you would like to help Fran win the battle against Lyme Disease you
can donate on her profile here

Come to the show and join Fran's Hella Pretty Lyme Fighting Army!!

The Performers
Mark Growden is a composer, multi-instrumentalist, singer, painter,
printer, and father based in SF. Some people think he smells good.

Lauren Wheeler is a recovering slam poet who competed at the National
Poetry Slam in 1998, as a member of the renegade Team SF-Mission
District, and again in 1999, as a member and the coach of Team Ithaca,
NY. She has featured at Cornell University, where she studied English
Literature, as well as in Los Angeles, Miami, and throughout the Bay
Area. Lauren curated and hosted two poetry series in Ithaca, Tongue &
Groove at Stella's Wine and Whiskey Bar and Re-Verse at the Oak Café,
and was a core organizer of the ForWord Girls poetry and spoken word
festival in San Francisco. Her work has appeared in Lodestar
Quarterly, Other Magazine, and 365 Tomorrows.

Walking the dirty streets of the big city and the farm towns,
Vagabondage sings you tales of lonely alleyways, late night bus rides
and unfortunate incidents with spicy spicy food. Comprised of a poet,
an actor, a storyteller, a ham, a vaudevillian, an accordion player,
two guitar players, a kazoo player, and two singers, this duo will
sing songs to make you laugh, cry, and raise your glass and sing

Steven Schwartz is not Andrei.

Katrina James had her first short story published in 1998 and has been
creating a steadily growing body of tales ever since. She also
co-produced the cult public access show kittypr0n and has acted in and
worked behind-the-scenes on several San Francisco stage productions,
including Night of the Living Dead, Hitch-hiker's Guide to the Galaxy,
The Twilight Zone, and Zippy the Pinhead. She currently spends her
days disguised as a mild-mannered office manager.

heathen machinery: writer, mother, explosives expert. what's the worst
that could happen?

Meliza Bañales is originally from Los Angeles. She has taught writing
at UCSC and SFSU as well as at numerous conferences and workshops. She
has been writing and performing for the last fifteen years. She
published her first poems when she was seventeen in The Lesbian News.
She went on to become the first Latina to ever win a Poetry Slam
Championship on the west coast in 2002(Oakland), the 2002 winner of
the People Before Profits Poetry Prize, and published her first book,
Say It With Your Whole Mouth, at the age of twenty-five which went on
to be nominated for the Poetry Center Book Award in 2004. ( Read
more... )

Gina de Vries is a queer femme writer, rabble-rouser, and Paisan. Her
fiction, journalism, memoir, and smut have appeared dozens of places,
including: Baby, Remember My Name, Dirty Girls, TransForming
Community, That's Revolting!, Bound to Struggle: Where Kink & Radical
Politics Meet, make/shift magazine, and Curve magazine (where she was
a columnist from 1997-2004). Currently, Gina curates shows for queer
performance series San Francisco in Exile, blogs for national LGBT
blog Bilerico, and teaches a writing workshop for sex workers at
Center for Sex & Culture. She can be cruised online at

Leah Lakshmi Piepzna-Samarasinha is a queer Sri Lankan writer,
performer and high femme powerhouse. The author of Consensual Genocide
(TSAR), she has performed her work widely throughout North America and
Sri Lanka, including performances at Yale University, Oberlin College,
University of Southern California, Swarthmore College, louderARTS,
2006 Pride Sri Lanka (Sri Lanka's second ever Pride), and the
immigrant rights rallies and benefits for queer youth centers down
your block. Born and raised in the east end of the Rust Belt, aka
Worcester, Mass, she left the United States for ten years at age 21 to
learn from Toronto's radical South Asian and queer of color literary
and political communities. Obsessed with documenting queer/trans of
color, mixed-race, Sri Lankan, high femme and survivor stories, her
work has been anthologized in Homelands: Women's Journeys Across Race,
Time and Place, We Don't Need Another Wave, Colonize This!, With a
Rough Tongue: Femmes write porn, Without a Net, Dangerous Families,
Geeks, Misfits and Outlaws, Brazen Femme, Femme, and A Girl's Guide to
Taking Over the World. She writes regularly for Bitch, Colorlines,
Hyphen and Make/Shift magazines. From 2003-2007 she produced Toronto's
acclaimed Browngirlworld queer/trans of color spoken word series and
is one of the co-creators of Toronto's Asian Arts Freedom School, a
writing and radical Asian history program for APIA youth. Newly
relocated to Oakland after running away from America for a decade, she
is completing her MFA in creative nonfiction at Mills College, touring
her one-woman show, Grown Woman Show (which will be produced by the
Asian Pacific Islander Cultural Center at SomArts in June 2009), and
finishing her second book, Dirty River, a memoir of coming of age as a
young queer mixed brown survivor in the late 90s. She is a member of
the Revolution Starts At Home Collective and INCITE! Women of Color
Against Violence, and a co-founder of The Femme Sharks, a posse of
tough, loud-mouthed femme girls of color who are the leaders and
defenders of our communities. She is a keynote speaker at the 2008
Femme Conference and a 2008 Poetry for the People Student Teacher Poet
at UC Berkeley. She remains in love with the unending possibilities of
transforming of oppression and abuse, with fierce queer and trans POC
genius and toughass central Massachusetts girls. Her websites are
brownstargirl.com and myspace.com/leahlakshmi.

Originally from Albuquerque, New Mexico, Storm Florez is a Mexican
Amaricon FTM, genderqueer singer/songwriter, performance artist, and
live sex show instigator. Storm currently lives in San Francisco. He
has performed his music and spoken word across the US and co-produced
and performed in the pornarific cabaret Trans as Fuck in San Francisco
in 2004 and in West Hollywood in 2006. He recently curated and
performed in Trans as Fuck at the National Queer Arts Festival on June
7th. http://www.queerculturalcenter.org/Pages/QFest08/TransAs.html.
Storm's National Queer Arts Festival performances have also included:
Intercourse (2001), Viva La Joteria (2004), Home Queer Home and
Transforming Community (2007). Other venues and events include:
Transgiving (Los Angeles), CB's Lounge (New York), Mable Peabody's
Beauty Salon and Chainsaw Repair (Denton, TX.), WIMINFEST,
(Albuquerque, New Mexico), Gender Pirates (San Francisco), Fairybutch
(San Francisco), Perverts Put Out (San Francisco), Mixed Fruit (San
Francisco), the San Francisco Trans March and the San Francisco Trans
stage at SF Pride. Storm's writing has been published in BANG
magazine (out of Stockholm, Sweden), From the Inside Out: Radical
Gender Transformation, FTM and Beyond (Manic D Press) and his own self
published The Pussyboy Chronicles and The Pussyboy Chronicles volume2
(Sticky Press).

additional performers to be announced!!!

The Fox affiliate in the SF Bay area had a good story about the Lyme
film and Lyme in general--also mentions the fact the movie is supposed
to be shown to Congress today.


May 2009

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