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Rob Manser

Rob Manser (65)

A list of Sydney bars and clubs shut down due to the lockout laws

Just to keep it fresh in your mind - thousands of jobs, experiences and a vibrant night-time economy has been lost since the Libs introduced the lockout laws to "punish" one punch attacks. and whilst these dickheads who come into the city for a night out don't know how to behave the city and its villages are struggling to survive.

Everyone from drag queens to DJs to graphic designers and venues are suffering harshly.  Here is a list of the venues closed because of these draconian laws.

  • Backroom (Potts Point)
  • Soho (Kings Cross)
  • Hugo's Lounge (Kings Cross)
  • The Bourbon (Kings Cross)
  • The Flinders (Oxford Street precinct)
  • Trademark (Kings Cross)
  • Bank Hotel (Kings Cross)
  • Q-Bar (Darlinghurst)
  • Exchange Hotel (Darlinghurst)
  • Hot Damn (Darlinghurst)
  • World Bar 
  • La Cita (Darling Harbour)
  • Bar Century (George Street)
  • Goodgod Small Club (Chinatown)
  • The Goldfish Bar (Kings Cross)
  • Beach Haus (Kings Cross)
  • The Cuban Place (Sydney)
  • Jimmy Liks (Potts Point)
  • Grasshopper (Sydney)
  • Absinthe Salon (Surry Hills)
  • Mr Fox (Surry Hills)
  • Swanson Hotel (Erskineville)
  • The Basement (Circular Quay)
  • Love Machine (Potts Point)
  • Dream Girls (Potts Point)
  • Porky's Nite Club (Potts Point)
  • Midnight Shift (Darlinghurst)
  • Moulin Rouge (Kings Cross)
  • Tunnel Nightclub (Potts Point)



Is the new RuPaul doll worth $204.33aud?

She is an icon and a real queen for the ages, but the new RuPaul Doll that was shamelessly plugged on this weeks episode of Drag Race from Infinity Toys works out to be 204.33 aussie dohlahs, and thats before shipping.

She is magnificent in her barbie glory, but its apparent from the doll pix that her wig was not a "wigs by Vanity" - that hairline leaves a lot to be desired.

I wanted to buy one so I could go all "Just Jack" like he did with his Cher doll - but this breaks the bank...  between paying for tickets to drag race promoted gigs for all the gurls to this its starting to stretch the wallet thin.

Let us know your thoughts in the comments below.

Sissy that credit card.

Ru's Doll includes:


  • 12.5-inch/1:6 scale, fully articulated, vinyl collectible doll, rooted hair and delicately hand-applied eyelashes;
  • Elaborate micro-sequined stage gown designed by Jason Wu;
  • Shoes;
  • Earrings;
  • Miniature RuPaul "chocolate" bar accessory;
  • Miniature "makeup" accessory set;
  • Miniature RuPaul "book" accessory
  • Pair of hands with long manicured nails (new hand sculpt!);
  • Alternate pair of grip hands (new hand sculpt!);
  • Doll stand;
  • Certificate of authenticity.



Sashay you pay??? 




Negative about the Negativity

Hmm, I wonder if London will be as negative and snarky as Sydney is at the moment, in 12 years time? The positiveness that we all felt during the Sydney Games, I am afraid, is so long gone. Sydney now resembles New York of the 90's - harsh, critical and bitter.

New York, post 9/11 is so placid, friendly and welcoming. London is going through its Olympic glory - and well, i must say i am a little broken hearted at my old girl Sydney - she is a mess of drunken teenagers, snarky "mouse wankers" (you know, those people who are more than willing to throw shit in your face online, but wouldn't dare say a word of it to your face) and holier than though soap box queens.

Sure, I apreciate the fact social networking has given people a voice - but I am over the constant barrage of negativity.

Offline, I am particularly over walking out of my front door and being side swept by arrogant self centred assholes who are only out there for themselves. Far too busy or self important to have common courtesy for another person on the sidewalk. I get that some people don't give a rats ass about another, but really - it seems like its out of control - has everyone given up? Are we all just existing in our own little bubbles?

Whatever happened to common sense? What happened to manners? It makes you want to hide in your apartment and never leave.

I really hold the gay community to account when it comes to the social barometer of whats acceptable. For so long, a lot of Sydney ghetto queens have been tearing things down and ripping things apart that it now seems to have become a national pastime. That's one trend that we didn't need to set or share with the mainstream! Bitchy is the new black supposedly. We were always the up fronts, the trendsetters, the community others looked towards for our positivity, friendliness and support for each other. Where has that gone?

So I call on all the nice people out there, who are fed up with the negative crap - don't take it anymore. Make sure our younger generations don't grow up thinking that the Kardashians are role models, that "robo drag" is an acceptable form of entertainment, and that manners, civility and courtesy have no place in our society.

We all live in the same spaces, we should respect each others rights to be there, to enjoy our cities, and especially us Sydney queens - instead of bitching and moaning about the community, just cos someone gave you a keyboard and an internet connection - get out there and support the people putting on your events like Mardi Gras (if you don't like something, shut the hell up unless your prepared to go and do it yourself) and those who do the hard yards entertaining us, protecting us and educating us. Its not a hard job to be nice and enjoy what you have on offer, and really my dears - if its so shit that you could do better - then I challenge you to put down the keyboard and try it yourself. Go on, I double dare you!

A great rule of thumb for a positive future - if you wouldn't say it to someones face (or have the opportunity to say it to their face) then don't say it online! Some things, like bad manners, should be kept to yourself!

I just hope for a day when I can walk out my front door, walk down the street and not have fifteen people walk into me on their mobile phone, or better still, vapidly walking around not caring about anyone else's personal space.

I for one do not want to live in a bitter, selfish, beer stained city. So please, for heavens sake - be nice to one another and if your negative or feel like being socially selfish - stay home, keep it to yourself and when your over it - pop online or pop out to our hangs and say something nice to someone instead.

PS: I would like to thank Maxi Shield for the term Mouse Wanker - its a classic.


One Direction - getting old

OK, so its not the band I am talking about - but it's my birthday this coming week, and being a pop music person for my entire life, its really the first time I have felt old - and THAT is all thanks to the One Direction lads.

Seeing them "Beatle-ing" all over Sydney is fine and dandy, but I take one look at the boys and to me they look like they are 14 years old, yet in fact, most of them are above legal drinking age (actually all of them).

Cringe worthy? I think so.

Well, let me break it down a bit further. Back in the day i worked with Take That, Backstreet Boys, NKOTB and heaps more - boy bands of my generation. Even then I wasn't a teen going crazy - I was working my ass off in an industry to forge a career.

Cut to 2012, One Direction are building pop up stores in Pitt Street Mall, doing harbour cruises on Sydney harbour and secret gigs for 100 fans, yet Gary Barlow (Take That) is working with the Sydney Symphony for the Queens Jubilee celebrations.

One Direction will - if they play their cards right, have the opportunity to go on and do massive things (Like Take That) or at the very least, reform in 20 years for a reunion tour (ala NKOTB - which by the way is an incredible show).

I however, will surrender to the fact that I will become another year older, but relish in the fact that between the time of Take That and One Direction I have discovered an incredible bunch of people I am happy to call my friends.

So getting old is not that bad - and if this blog makes absolutely no sense, it's just the Alzheimer's kicking in.


A journey back to the bookshop and saw an old friend

It's been a while since i stepped out socially on a Saturday afternoon to see what the Oxford Street strip north of Taylor Square had to offer, and it was mainly cos JP (my hubby) and I were assisting Marky on a photoshoot at Moth Studios earlier in the day that we even ventured out. (Try t oget me away from my balcony on a Saturday afternoon when its sunny is near on impossible)

Over the "where shall we eat" vibe, and thanks to my restrictive no gluten diet, Oxford street isn't the best place for variety. We decided to go and check out the upper bits, you only ever used to walk past to get down to the Albury Hotel.

We really didn't find anything - apart from taking a gander in the windows at Oxford Art Supplies (an amazing store) - and having a giggle at the cute new bar/space "Hunky Dory Social Club"  (which actually looks really promising - and i hear has a nice rooftop space too!) so we ended up at the Bookshop Darlinghurst - an icon and a place that i have not been in for ages and ages.

Wow its grown - it has all the usual treats of literary genius from the GLBTI community in there - plus a new killer DVD selection - i didn't know they had so many gay titles… definitely worth checking out again!

Strolling through the tiny aisles, i stumbles across the shelf with stock of a friends book - Kent Gryphons "Twisted Harmony" - it was nice to go hang out with an old friend in an old haunt - even if that friend now lives on the other side of the country.

It also reminded me that there are lots of things to do - all you have to do is shake up your routine - stop doing the same things cos they are easy and step out once in a while.

Summer is the perfect time for it, and as it's summer here in Sydney - particularly with the last few days of nice weather - why not head out and reconnect.


Predatory Daters

Do you know someone that comes in, sweeps you off your feet, promises you the world, then abruptly once that has sat for 2.4 seconds, they rack off and do it all again with someone else?

Are you the victim of a predatory dater?

Seriously - i have been witness to a few folks who treat people like this - now don't get me wrong, its not that i just witnessed one bad thing happen to a friend and am having a bitch about it -- this seems to be the trend for not only this particular person, but many others in the community, and for me something i have witnessed over many years.

Whats makes someone want to promise a dream life with a "lovely" person and then have it all stamped upon as sport?

Is it that the person doing the stomping is only addicted to being the knight in shining armour for that special someone and once the horse ride is over, they kick you into the manure?

I have over the past 5 years or so, been witness to one very such malicious being, a girl no less, who sweeps other girls off their feet - changes there entire worlds (even ruining other partnerships, relationship or marriages), then leaves them in her dust whilst she traipses off to find another "true love" - yes i said it "True love"… because you just have to see the Facebook status of this particular person to see that its all love love love, but remarkably the other name just keeps on changing.

Same shit, different victim.

Are you a love bully?
Are you a tortured soul in need of help?
Are you just an ass?

The problem is dear lady, is that you ARE a nice person - you just have shithouse habits and an obvious lack of self esteem. My one comment to you is: Leave others alone until you sort yourself out! As RuPaul says… "If you can't love yourself, how the fuck you gunna love somebody else"

If you know anyone like this or see it happening - you know what- do the right things and call the Predatory dater out on their bullshit. Too many hearts are being broken, and thats all our community needs, is more heartache.


2010 - the highs and lows.

ok, so on the blog front I have personally been a little quiet - but its been such a crazy end of year - do you blame me?


so many things have been happening - from the new Video News Bulletins, the new social network on the site - not to mention the billion other projects i have been working on!


This past year i have had so much to be thankful for - for many personal goals achieved, to the shear fact that you guys pay attention, get involved and support this site and the other stuff i do. For that, i am eternally grateful.


2010 has been a mixed year for me - lots of highs and some big lows... the begining of the year was a big recovery period for me -- some of you may or may not know that i got the crap beaten out of me by a group of thugs at darling harbour... the police, the DH authority, and no one was of real help... it sucks that over a year later, and i am still waiting on a hospital appointment to get my right ear fixed.


Not only did i suffer multiple fractures in my skull, double vision, i lost hearing in my right ear and have been going through a horrible and long recovery... so its just been one weird roller-coaster ride.


I have been privallidged to be witness to many of our communities great moments, and also some of its worst.


The struggle for LGBTI marriage rights has been one that engaged me, upset me, rallied me, dissappointed me, it was up down, up down.


The position of our key community organisations saw major backlash, downfalls and even a few successes. I saw some great people in our community join the New Mardi Gras board - i also met (for the first time) some legendary people involved with NMG and other places that opened my eyes to the humanity of our community.


Alot of what goes on is done by volunteeers... so please be aware beofore slamming these folk for "not doing it properly" - my opinion is, if you have an issue - pick your own ass up and put your hand up and help out!


Some organisations profit on our community, some do their job, some dont. Some just try to stay around to stay around - wether they do their job or not. Its been interesting to see who really is there for the community and who is in it for themselves. One group of people I have had the pleasure of working with are the Queer Out West Radio crew... they really believe in community, they are fabulous, outrageous, scandalous and honest. I am proud to now be a part of the team each month.


It was an interesting year all around. I appeared on the Tony Awards Red Carpet - which was a personal thrill, and we also showed up on the new hit show "A:List New York" with my mate, celebrity photographer, Mike Ruiz...


The best thing for me was that I managed to hang on to my husband (to be, thanks Aussie Govt!) for another year. We celebrated 9 years together, and personally I dont know how he puts up with me - he is either totally insane, or well, totally insane. But I love him, and could never see myself without him in my life - so for that fact alone, no matter what 2010 brought... I am incredibly lucky just for that.


I am also lucky for my friends - those of whom I talk to regularly, and those that I poke through facebook.


Thankyou for caring about what's written on this website... what you hear and what you see. I am sooo proud about the progress of our site - our community and our position in the GLOBAL community. This bugger of a site has been going since 1997... and I am glad that every year that ticks over, I am more engaged and more driven to keep it all going.


Bring on 2011, and I hope you will be a huge part of it.

Lots of love


(the piccie is of me and my new beard, working with Josh Groban during the Carols in the Domain period.)


Cat has "cat" written in it's fur... no joke.

Why, it's as if God dipped his finger in the ink pot and taught baby Jesus how to spell 'cat'! It took the kitty's owners Gary and Joan Marsh three whole days to notice the unusual markings, after bringing her home from the rescue shelter. "But once somebody points it out it's obvious – the word stands out a mile!"

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