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  • Here is why landlords could do well in Wayne County

    CNN has a message to all prospective landlords: Head to Wayne County! Occupancy and rental rates are increasing, the report says, creating an opportunity for serious returns on investments. In fact, after comparing the median sales price of homes to average monthly rents in nearly 1,600 counties, RealtyTrac found that Detroit’s Wayne County offers landlords the best return on their investment in the nation. Investors who buy homes in the metro area can expect a 30% gross annual return from rents. That’s triple the national average of 10%. RealtyTrac, an online real estate information company, says the county offers investors low prices for larger homes — with a median price of $45,000. “We’ve got some steals here,” said Rachel Saltmarshall, a real estate agent and immediate past president of the Detroit Association of Realtors, told CNN. “There’s a six-bedroom, 6,000 square-foot home in a historic district selling for $65,000.” For more, read the entire report here.

    The post Here is why landlords could do well in Wayne County appeared first on Metro Times Blogs.

  • The Record Store Day Guide for metro Detroit

    This Saturday, audiophiles across the world will venture out to their favorite independent record stores in search of limited releases that quickly become collectors items. The third Saturday of April marks the fairly new international holiday Record Store Day. There are certainly dos and don’ts to know for RSD — like where to shop, and how to shop. That’s right, there is an etiquette to shopping on Record Store Day and violating that code makes you look like a real asshole. In my experience of celebrating Record Store Day, I’ve seen stores use a few different tactics as far as stocking the special releases. Some establishments will set up a table, somewhere in the store, where a few shoppers at a time can flip through records in a calm and contained manner. Other places will have a similar setup, with all the releases at a table, but shoppers ask the store employees for the releases they want. It’s like a record nerd stock exchange. This process gets loud, slightly confusing and incredibly annoying — this is where elbows start getting thrown. Then, there are places that put the releases on the shelves, usually categorized by size — twelve inches with the twelve inches, seven inches with the seven inches and […]

    The post The Record Store Day Guide for metro Detroit appeared first on Metro Times Blogs.

  • City Slang: DEMF 2014 canceled

    The Detroit Electronic Music Festival, which was supposed to be making a triumphant return this year, has been canceled. A statement on the website says that the festival will be back in 2015. Back in November, Ford Field hosted an announcement party for DEMF, where it was revealed that a new DEMF festival would take place at Campus Martius Park in Detroit over the July 4th weekend. “I’m proud to be involved in the biggest and best electronic music festival in the world,” said Juan Atkins. “The future’s here. This is techno scene.” Not the immediate future, apparently. The DEMF people claim that the M-1 rail construction is partially to blame for the cancellation/12-month-postponement. Read the full statement here. Follow @City_Slang

    The post City Slang: DEMF 2014 canceled appeared first on Metro Times Blogs.

  • Metro Times wins heavy at the SPJ Awards

    Despite a turbulent 2013 which saw Metro Times change owners, move buildings and change editors twice, we picked up eight awards at the Society of Professional Journalists Awards on Wednesday night. The big winner was Robert Nixon, design manager, who picked up a first place for “Feature Page Design (Class A)” for our Josh Malerman cover story, first for “Cover Design (Class A)” for our Halloween issue (alongside illustrator John Dunivant), and a second in that same category for our annual Lust issue. In the news categories, our esteemed former news editor and current contributing writer Curt Guyette won third in “General News Reporting” and third in “Best Consumer/Watchdog” – both Class A – for the Fairground Zero and Petcoke Series respectively. Music & Culture Editor Brett Callwood placed third for his Josh Malerman cover story in the “Best Personality Profile (Class A)” category, and former editor Bryan Gottlieb picked up a couple of Class C awards for “Editorial Writing” and “Headline Writing” (third and second, respectively). We were also pleased to learn that our investigative reporter Ryan Felton won first place and an honorable mention for work published while at the Oakland Press. The MT ship is steady now, […]

    The post Metro Times wins heavy at the SPJ Awards appeared first on Metro Times Blogs.

  • Detroit’s grand bargain still needs Lansing’s approval

    In this week’s Metro Times we took a look at the state legislature’s role in Detroit’s ongoing bankruptcy — in particular, how it must approve a $350 million pledge for the so-called “grand bargain” to remain intact. And, with last night’s announcement of a significant deal between the city and Detroit’s pension boards and retiree groups, the ball is Lansing’s court now. The new deal, first reported by the Freep, would cut general employees monthly pension checks by 4.5 percent and eliminate their cost-of-living increases. Police and fire retirees would see no cuts to monthly checks, while their cost-of-living increases would be reduced from 2.25 percent to 1 percent. Under the original offer, police and fire retirees cuts were as high as 14 percent, with general retirees as high as 34 percent, that is, if the groups rejected the “grand bargain,” an $816 million proposal funded by foundations, the state, and the DIA to shore up pensions. The sweeter deal for pensions, though, it must be noted, entirely relies on the state legislature approving $350 million for Detroit’s bankruptcy.  And while this broke after Metro Times went to press, that was the focal point of this week’s News Hits column — so, it’s worth repeating: The […]

    The post Detroit’s grand bargain still needs Lansing’s approval appeared first on Metro Times Blogs.

  • City Slang: Local releases for Record Store Day on Saturday

    This Saturday, April 19, is Record Store Day, and there is plenty going on in metro Detroit and Michigan. Of special interest to us is Chiodos’ 7” single “R2ME2/Let Me Get You A Towel,” Mayer Hawthorne & Shintaro Skamoto’s 7” “Wine Glass Woman/In a Phantom,” Chuck Inglish & Action Bronson’s 7” “Game Time,” Chuck Inglish & Chance the Rapper’s 7” “Glam,” Chuck Inglish & Chromeo’s 7” “Legs,” Chuck Inglish, Mac Miller & Ab-Soul’s 7” “Easily,” James Williamson’s 7” “Open Up and Bleed/Gimme Some Skin,” Black Milk’s 12” “Glitches in the Break,” Mayer Hawthorne’s 10” “Jaded Inc.,” Wayne Kramer & the Lexington Arts Ensemble’s 12” “Lexington,” and best of all, Ray Parker Jr.’s 10” “Ghostbusters.” We wrote about James Williamson’s release this week. Go shop. Follow @City_Slang

    The post City Slang: Local releases for Record Store Day on Saturday appeared first on Metro Times Blogs.

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Savage Love

Double-crossed

How to deal when your 'friend' posts cross-dressing pics of you on Facebook

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Q: A friend of mine on the opposite coast is a crossdresser considering transitioning. He came out to a female friend he had known for a long time but hadn’t seen in a while, and she told her that she wanted her to come to her house fully dressed for some hot sex to “explore her bi-curiosity” or some shit. I told her to go for it, saying gender-transgression play is potentially hot. I neglected to mention that she should only go for it if she trusted this girl (hereafter known as “Evil Bitch”). Evil Bitch backed out as soon as she arrived, but took her out to dinner (still fully dressed) as consolation. When she first told me this, I thought, “Oh well, Evil Bitch got cold feet, that sucks.” Now my friend is telling me that Evil Bitch messaged a bunch of mutual friends he wasn’t out to, outing my friend to them. After my friend told Evil Bitch that what went down between them was private, Evil Bitch just responded with “LOL k,” and then posted pictures from their dinner date — fully dressed — on her Facebook. I told my friend to call Evil Bitch up and tell her what a violation of privacy and betrayal of trust that was. She just called him a faggot and hung up. I feel bad because I encouraged her to go for it. Is there anything my friend can do? She’s freaking out and thinks that Evil Bitch ruined her life. —Friend Of Crossdresser Betrayed By Evil Bitch

 

A: Your pronouns are all over the place, FOCBBEB. Your friend is a she, then a he, then a she, then a he. So I’m gonna stick with “Your Friend,” despite how clunky it makes my response, because I can’t tell how Your Friend identifies.

Twenty years ago, Your Friend could’ve told Your Friend’s relatives and whatever friends Your Friend had in common with Evil Bitch that they got dressed up for a laugh and Your Friend can’t for the life of Your Friend understand why Evil Bitch is misrepresenting what they did that night. But I can only assume that Your Friend and Evil Bitch exchanged e-mails, swapped texts, sent DMs via Twitter, etc., so Your Friend shouldn’t accuse Evil Bitch of lying. That will prompt Evil Bitch to retaliate by posting e-mails, texts and DMs to Facebook, which will only make things worse for Your Friend.

Since Your Friend can’t turn this around on Evil Bitch — and since calling Evil Bitch a liar will only make things worse for Your Friend — there’s no way for Your Friend to nip this situation in the bud. Your Friend can only get out in front of it. Your Friend is out about the crossdressing now, at least, and Your Friend should embrace being out with as much good grace and courage as Your Friend can muster. And paradoxically, FOCBBEB, the more at peace with being out Your Friend appears to be, the fewer people Your Friend will be outed to. If Your Friend tries to keep this quiet, other malicious assholes will realize they can hurt Your Friend by spreading the news. If Your Friend acts like Your Friend couldn’t care less who knows, malicious assholes will be less likely to spread it around.

I’ve known a few people who were outed by malicious shits like Evil Bitch — outed as gay or kinky or swingers or poly or all of the above — and it sucks and it hurts and, yes, it can turn a person’s life upside down. But most of the people I’ve known who were outed looked back on the experience a year or two later with … well … not with gratitude, but they woke up one day happy to be free of the stress of keeping their big secret. Maybe Your Friend will feel the same way, and Your Friend will have Evil Bitch to thank.

In the meantime, FOCBBEB, offer Your Friend your support and get in the face of anyone who gives Your Friend any grief.

 

Q: I just read your column about evangelical girls “saddlebacking” (having anal sex in order to preserve their virginities). I am a 21-year-old and have been sexually active since age 14. I engage in oral and anal sex. I have never had vaginal intercourse, so technically I am still a virgin. My reason for doing this has nothing to do with religion and everything to do with avoiding pregnancy. And, yes, I think it would be nice to give the man I marry a rare gift on our wedding night. And with my experiences over the past seven years, I believe I will be able to keep my future husband fulfilled and quite happy in the bedroom. —No Name

 

A: Anal is a highly effective birth-control method, and there’s only one known case of someone getting pregnant through oral sex. (Google around and you’ll find it pretty quick.) But anal intercourse is also the most effective means of HIV transmission — 18 times more effective than vaginal intercourse — so I hope you’re using condoms, regardless. And one quibble: If technically you’re still a virgin, NN, then technically my husband is still a virgin, too. Yeah … no. My husband isn’t a virgin, technically or otherwise, and neither are you, NN. Your vagina might be a virgin, sure, but you’re not.

 

Pauline “Dear Abby” Phillips: I grew up reading both Eppie “Ann Landers” Lederer in the Chicago Sun-Times and Pauline “Dear Abby” Phillips in the Chicago Tribune. I always preferred Ann’s column to Abby’s column — did you know they were twin sisters? — and I’m actually sitting at Ann’s desk, which I bought at auction after her death, as I write this. So you could definitely call me more of an Ann fan. But I have a newfound appreciation for Abby after reading Margalit Fox’s terrific obit in the New York Times (read it here: tinyurl.com/abbyobit). The obit ends with the most famous three-word response in the whole sordid history of the advice-column racket:

 

Dear Abby: Two men who claim to be father and adopted son just bought an old mansion across the street and fixed it up. We notice a very suspicious mixture of company coming and going at all hours — blacks, whites, Orientals, women who look like men, and men who look like women. This has always been considered one of the finest sections of San Francisco, and these weirdos are giving it a bad name. How can we improve the neighborhood? —Nob Hill Residents

 

Dear Residents: You could move.

 

Phillips wrote that decades ago — back when adult gay men often resorted to adopting their adult partners because it was the only way to secure any legal protection for their relationships — and people are still quoting it today. I don’t think anyone working in this genre will ever top it. My sympathies to Jeanne Phillips, Pauline’s daughter and the current author of the Dear Abby column.

 

Queer readers: Help advance psychosocial research and do your part to include the LGB community in research while examining critical questions about the effect of rejection in the lives of LGB people. Adults (18-49) of all sexual orientations are needed for an important study on the relationship between sexual orientation, rejection, and the attachment system. See surveymonkey.com/s/attachmentandalienation to learn more and to participate in the study. Thanks.

 

FindDan Savage’s weekly podcast every Tuesday at thestranger.com/savage. Reach him at mail@savagelove.net or @fakedansavage on Twitter.

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