Features

OutFront: January 2008

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The new Montrose Motorcycle Riding Club and the Houston Gendermyn.

bikersVROOM VROOM The new Montrose Motorcycle Riding Club is one of the community’s most balanced organizations, in terms of the male-to-female ratio, believes biker Rhonda Rubin. What binds its members together is a love of the open road and a need for speed. “We just ride,” says Rubin, one of the group‘s founding members, who wisely adds that she always wears a helmet. • Rubin invites anyone interested in two-wheel motoring to drop by one of the club’s weekly Wednesday night dinner get-togethers. There, members (who include, pictured from left, Rick Overholt, Jason Posey, Amy Gready, and Rubin) discuss where their next cross-country trip will take them, their plans for a Pride Parade entry, and how best to keep insects from imbedding themselves in smiling riders’ grill work. • Rides range from a local buzz lasting a couple of hours to weekend events like the Republic of Texas Biker Rally in Austin last summer. “One of our members came up with a scenic route between here and Austin that we just had a blast getting there with,” Rubin says. • No hog? No problem. Motorcycle ownership is not mandatory to join the group. Those who want to ride shotgun as “support members,” or even zip around on scooters, are ecumenically welcomed. Details: www.montrosemrc.org.

Photographed by John Conroy
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cueGRAND ILLUSION You know the old saying: “Clothes make the man.” In the case of the Houston Gendermyn, women in men’s clothing make the man — and so much more. • “We’re providing a service to community by reflecting onstage the femininities, masculinities, and gender-fluidities we want to see in our lives,” says Jessica Mays, one of Gendermyn’s founding members, “and we’re also subverting conventional gender constructs each time we go out in drag.” Mays, a.k.a. “Pedro Asty” (center, wearing necktie), is pictured here with fellow Gendermyn at the comfy Cue & Cushion billiard hall in the Heights, their regular hangout. • The dozenish members of this all-female, drag-king performance group have strutted their bound-down-and-padded-up stuff for a bit over a year to the delight of dollar-bill-grasping women throughout Texas, Mays says. • “We use gender performance as a public medium to inspire desire and raise consciousness about the war, the death penalty, domestic violence, femicides in Juarez, immigration, and human rights struggles for all people, including GLBTQI folks,” she adds. • Log on to www.myspace.com/bayoucitygendermyn for a full schedule of the Gendermyn’s upcoming events, including their February 2 Cirque du SoGay show at Numbers.

Photographed by John Conroy

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