Ask Francine - Amid April's Whirl of Events, a Solemn Pause

They say it?s spring, but as I write this, it?s horribly cold. I had my pool boy cover up the exotic tulips I smuggled in last summer from Amsterdam. I can?t believe it?s nearly May and still freezing at night. However, the Demoncrats tell me it?s all due to global warming. I long for warmth, yet I hate artificially heated air. It makes my hair snap, and when I look into a mirror, my youthful face has imitation wrinkles. I scream at my image, but a vision of Jesus appears, telling me I?m the most beautiful Christian of all. ... He?s the only one who can calm me down.

It?s tough being a True Christian in April. It seems that all you gays and lesbians share one calendar and plan some sort of activity 24/7 throughout the month. I had to take a break last Saturday night and sit home just so I could dictate this week?s column for my cook, Nancy, to transcribe. Since you?re listening to this, Nancy, I must remind you that Loch Lloyd is having its annual spring cleanup on Wednesday and I need box lunches for 200 at 9 a.m. You?re going to need to reschedule your colonoscopy for another day.

Little John Koop (better known as Flo) took me to upscale Bluestem restaurant last week. He wants me to be the showcase performer for Gay Pride this year. I giggled, but my performing days are over. Once I found the Lord, I threw away my Hollywood ways ? but memories of fame still warm my heart. In fact, our cute server at Bluestem, Justin, asked me for an autograph. As I was signing Justin?s bare chest, I glanced over and saw Koop?s adoring eyes. I think he was adoring me (not the sinewy, taut man-flesh of Justin) but I can?t be sure. However, I may attend Gay Pride this year as a favor to Koop.

April also brings music to the masses. The Kansas City Men?s Chorus found another group of boys from Wichita to sing with. My, that stage was full of men. And if reflected light could generate electricity, those boys could light the Plaza Christmas lights for 12 years. The glare from all those shiny heads nearly blinded me as I counted: bald, bald, hair, bald, toupee, bald. So I closed my eyes and listened: All was well with a lovely concert.

This week, no heterosexual women sent in unforgivable bosom shots. However, I did get a picture of a bulldog dressed in foundation garments. Overland Park Bev has a dog named Gladys that she claims is a lesbian. Wait a minute ... a lesbian dog? Let?s pray about this.

And April is also about fashion. De De DeVille and Ron Megee hosted the 20 for 20 fashion show, a fundraiser for AIDS Walk Kansas City. De De wore a $20 bill as a dress. People around me said she was a boy, but I?m in doubt: Do you see a boy bulge in that photo? No, I couldn?t either. And that Ron makes me feel dirty. Every time I see him I get feelings that confuse me. I know he?s a boy who dresses up like a girl but I like boys, I think, but if they wear a dress does that make me like girls? These gay events emotionally exhaust me. No wonder therapists? offices cluster around gay ghettos.

The AIDS Walk took another bit of cash from my wallet with the Union Hill House Parties. Condo creatures opened their homes so that streams of jealous commoners could go through and wish they lived in Union Hill. I?ve never thought of trading my manse in for a condo. It?s just so ... urban. I mean, these good people have gays living next door to them. What would the neighbors think?

I?m going to end on a serious note. My little pool boy, Jay-Jay, came home upset last night: He went on a date and made an unfortunate choice to have unprotected sex. All judgment aside, I held him as he cried. Today, he went to the Free Health Clinic and will go through the monthly tests to determine whether he?s been exposed to HIV. I?ll keep you informed.

AIDS is a very tough disease to live with. I know you?ve all grown up hearing about AIDS and HIV, and it means nothing to you. You?re immune to the
warnings?you?ve heard them a million times.

But listen to Francine: AIDS has taken lots of things from me.

I don?t want to lose you, too. So don?t have sex until you?re sure that person is the one. If you can?t do that, be safe. And try to find me at the AIDS Walk on April 26. I don?t want to be there, but I will be. It?s what we have to do, as a community, as Christians, as brothers and sisters.

If you do find me, no autographs, please.

Francine offers her slightly skewed viewpoint on issues in the Kansas City metropolitan area?s LGBT community in each issue of Camp. This satirical column is meant in jest and non-thought-provoking fun! Francine?s opinions are her own, and they do not necessarily reflect those of Camp or anyone connected to Camp. And since you?re asking, yes, she?s a fictional character. Well, you asked. Would you like to respond to Francine or give her a tip on something that may be of interest? E-mail her at

Photo courtesy of Jose Cuervo

2023 Reserva de la Familia Limited Edition Terceerunquinto

On January 10, 2023, Reserva de la Familia, Jose Cuervo’s ultra-premium collection of artisanal small-batch tequilas and Mexico’s crown jewel, announced its 2023 collector’s box, designed by artists Rolando Flores and Gabriel Cázares of the Mexico-based Tercerunquinto Collective. The piece of custom art, titled “Structuring a Landscape”, features a geometric abstraction of the landscape of Tequila, Mexico and will adorn the 2023 limited-release collector’s box of Reserva de la Familia Extra Añejo.

Since 1995, Jose Cuervo has worked with internationally recognized artists with roots in Mexico to design the box artwork for Reserva de la Familia Extra Añejo. Each box is an authentic collector’s item, with a limited quantity produced annually before a new artist is chosen. Previous artists include Gonzalo Lebrija, Pedro Friedeberg, Carlos Aguirre, Ricardo Pinto and many more. Every artist is selected by a team of art curators including 11th generation Cuervo family member and CEO of Jose Cuervo, Juan Domingo Beckmann, Executive Director of El Museo del Barrio in New York City, Patrick Charpenel and founder of Zona Maco, Mexico’s number one art fair, Zélika García.

Keep reading Show less
Photo courtesy of Velvet Ibiza

Velvet Ibiza

Every year, Ibiza is home to Europe’s very epic queer woman’s party, Velvet Ibiza, which is celebrating its 7th anniversary and promises to be next level. Velvet Ibiza is an all-inclusive 5-day and 5-night party and includes transportation from the airport, a bungalow, 3 meals, and activities and parties day and night, and drinks until around 10:30 pm.

This year, international crowds of LGBTQ+ women will be attending Velvet Ibiza on May 2 - 7 to celebrate life, belonging, and freedom. Event organizers have rented an entire resort in order to build a community vibe and allow queer women to connect so there’s no reason to go anywhere unless of course, you want to go shopping, head to the beach, or explore the island.

Keep reading Show less

Financial Planning for the LGBTQ+ community

The new year has arrived. For many people, that means making resolutions and thinking of ways they can do better in the coming year and beyond. Money management and financial planning are often very popular resolutions and goals, but most financial advice tends to be aimed at heterosexual couples who want to grow their family and raise children.

But, what if your life goals are different? What if you don’t receive the same protection under the current laws as hetero couples?
What if you don’t want to have kids?

Keep reading Show less