As luck would have it, a panel of love gurus gathers this weekend at the Distillery Lofts for a madcap three-hour presentation on love, relationships, sex, and Grindr. You know, the primary ingredients of every healthy relationship.
It’s part of a new(ish) speaker series called JAKE Talks, designed to be like TED Talks talks for queers. JAKE stands for “Joyfully Awaken to Knowledge and Empowerment,” and you know what, sometimes it’s hard to make a good acronym that just slips off the tongue, so let’s give them a pass on the name. The point is, it’s a great idea: gathering up experts from around the LGBT community to share their wisdom and insight and inspiration for the benefit of all.
Overseeing the whole shebang is Victor Ongpin and a staff of dedicated volunteers, who’ve been at this for about a year. The idea came to Victor after a few hangouts with friends, during which they watched a bunch of TED talks together but couldn’t help but notice that the speakers were pretty white, male, and heterosexual.
So Victor put together a proposal for a speaker series and ran it by some folks at Gay City Health Project. They helped him launch JAKE last May at the Calamus Auditorium, and it was a satisfactory success, growing by leaps and bounds (mostly bounds) since then.
And that brings us to Saturday’s event entitled “For the Love of…” which we assume is intended to be concluded with whatever is applicable to your own passions, and not with “all that is good and holy.”
Featured speakers: Chieftovia Odood, speaking about the Washington marriage equality saga; Tom Ly, an emerging screenwriter who will talk about pursing your passions; and Liz Cruz, who will hold forth on the topic of community-powered self-love. We’re looking forward to that last one.
Also on the lineup is Tobi Hill-Meyer, with tips for navigation a successful poly relationship; John Criscitello, visual artist and shining star of this week’s issue of The Stranger, (also: read OUR interview with Mr. Criscitello);our pal Michael Schneider, Portlandish creator of BLKSMTH and online-dating mensch; and a whole bunch more.
How on earth will they fit all these experts into three hours? Maybe by talking fast, or maybe by having them all shout at us simultaneously. But our money’s on distilling the key concepts to just the essential points. You know, like a TED Talk. But gay.
Alongside the talks, there will also be a popup art gallery with works that you can buy, which will support the artists, support JAKE, and support your own sense of pride every time you look at the wall and think, “I’m the kind of person who buys ART!”
Tickets are on sale online, but if you can’t make it in person, don’t worry: videos will go up on line eventually, so you can revel in the wisdom again and again.
In the mean time, go check out their video library of past events, and let your mind marinate in the collective wisdom of our community. Mmmm, mind-marinade. So synapsey.
WHO: You and your friends
WHAT: For The Love Of: a closer look at modern love
WHERE: Distillery Lofts / 1735 Westlake Avenue North, Seattle, WA 98109
WHEN: Saturday, February 21st, 400-700pm.
WHY: To empower and celebrate our community through dialogue & culture.
COST: Tickets are $15 pre-sale until Monday, Feb 16th / $22 thereafter and at the DOOR on Saturday, Feb 21st.