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Back Out With Benny

Fabulous Hillcrest

Posted: August 4th, 2017 | Back Out With Benny, Columns, Featured | 1 Comment

By Ben Cartwright | Back Out With Benny The day after San Diego Pride, dozens of volunteers took to the streets of Hillcrest to assist the Hillcrest Town Council in its annual Post-Pride Neighborhood Cleanup. While several of the volunteers were physically Hillcrest residents, a great many of them did not live in the neighborhood. So why would so many people come out to lend a hand in a neighborhood they don’t live in?

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Twenty years of Pride

Posted: July 7th, 2017 | Back Out With Benny, Columns, Featured | No Comments

By Ben Cartwright | Back Out With Benny We are just a week away from the annual San Diego LGBT Pride festivities, which kick off on Friday, July 14, with the annual Spirit of Stonewall Rally and Pride of Hillcrest Block Party in Hillcrest. We’re lucky in San Diego because many years ago, organizers decided to move our annual celebration to mid-July, so that when all of the Pride celebrations in most major cities around the […]

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March with us for equality

Posted: June 9th, 2017 | Back Out With Benny, Columns, Featured | No Comments

By Ben Cartwright | Back Out With Benny This Sunday, we’re asking community members to come out and march at The Equality March: San Diego, in conjunction with the National LGBTQ March on Washington and many other marches across the country happening the same day. We’re marching to claim the rights that all people should enjoy. We’re marching to stand up for the protections of all people in our community. And we’re marching so that we […]

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Our bars, connecting and community

Posted: May 12th, 2017 | Back Out With Benny, Columns, Featured | 2 Comments

By Ben Cartwright | Back Out With Benny One month from today will mark one year since the horrific Pulse Nightclub massacre in Orlando, Florida. While the shooting was absolutely devastating, it proved once again that our community is great at rallying together in times of need. Within 24 hours of the shooting, gatherings popped up across the country for community members to be there for each other and help one another process what had just […]

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No always means no

Posted: April 28th, 2017 | Back Out With Benny, Columns, Featured | No Comments

By Ben Cartwright | Back Out With Benny A few weeks ago, I was out at a bar on a Sunday afternoon with friends and we were discussing some thoughts about this planned column. In the middle of the conversation, a man came up to us to say hello and during that interaction, he noticed that one of my friends was wearing a snap button-down shirt. The person who approached us thought it would be “fun” […]

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San Diego a destination for all

Posted: January 6th, 2017 | Back Out With Benny, Columns, Featured | No Comments

By Ben Cartwright

If you are on Facebook, you may have noticed the “Year in Review” feature that users were able to access. The social media platform’s algorithms created a cute little video of your top photos of the year and had some facts about your Facebook usage over the year.

In 2016, I added 299 new friends, reacted to 64,607 posts (be it likes, hearts, wows, sads, or angries) and checked in to 906 places.

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In defense of flaking

Posted: December 9th, 2016 | Back Out With Benny, Columns, Featured | No Comments

By Ben Cartwright | Back Out With Benny I had an interesting conversation with a man at a bar recently. After sitting next to each other for about 10 months, we struck up a conversation and the topic of “flaking” came up. “Flakes,” for those who don’t know, are those who tend to say they’ll show up somewhere or do something, but then bail out, usually with no notice, reason, or phone call.

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Be kind to each other

Posted: November 11th, 2016 | Back Out With Benny, Columns, Featured | No Comments

By Ben Cartwright | Back Out With Benny It’s really hard to write a column on Election Day, as the course of our nation will change drastically depending on its results. While this column will be published a few days after we know who our next president will be, at the time of this writing, I have no idea. So I’m not going to write anything about that. This isn’t typically a political column anyway.

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Racial justice is an LGBTQ issue

Posted: September 30th, 2016 | Back Out With Benny, Columns, Featured | 7 Comments

By Ben Cartwright | Back Out With Benny As I began to write this column on Tuesday, I saw the news on social media of yet another person shot by a police officer. Every time this happens (and it happens more than we even know), my heart sinks. And this time, the shooting was very close to home in El Cajon, California, just a 10-minute drive east of San Diego.

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Showing up

Posted: September 2nd, 2016 | Back Out With Benny, Columns, Featured | No Comments

By Ben Cartwright | Back Out With Benny With Labor Day this weekend, many students have already gone back to school, and if they haven’t, they likely will next week. This time of year is always nostalgic for me, as I spent the first 13 years of my adult life being involved in higher education, either as a student or as an employee at San Diego State. And while I still visit SDSU a few times […]

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My journey with AIDS Walk

Posted: August 5th, 2016 | Back Out With Benny, Columns, Featured | No Comments

By Ben Cartwright | Back Out With Benny Last month, I shared with you the story of my first realization of San Diego Pride — or the fact that this thing called Pride existed anywhere — in 1996 at the age of 16. Well, it turns out that 1996 was a year of all sorts of discoveries for me. It was also the year I discovered AIDS Walk San Diego — and started seriously getting scared.

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It’s always someone’s first time

Posted: July 8th, 2016 | Back Out With Benny, Columns, Featured | 1 Comment

By Ben Cartwright | Back Out With Benny This year marks 20 years since I first became aware of San Diego Pride. It was 1996 and I was 16 years old. I remember picking up the Sunday morning San Diego Union-Tribune and seeing a story about the San Diego Gay & Lesbian Pride Parade on the front page of the local section. Having just recently realized that I was gay but still in the closet, I […]

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Weeding out ignorance online

Posted: June 10th, 2016 | Back Out With Benny, Columns, Featured | No Comments

By Ben Cartwright | Back Out With Benny I hop on Grindr every so often, and if you’ve been in the radius of me after I’ve been drinking lots of wine, you may have received one of my drunken invitations to cuddle. Gay social and hook-up apps may have their ups and downs, but I’ve met some cool people on the various incarnations of these types of sites — remember AOL chat rooms? Hyper-terminal bulletin […]

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