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An early COVID-19 story + Remembering Sylvester

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Armando Zambrana

Two years into the COVID-19 pandemic, life is sort of bouncing back and forth between normalcy, and stints of masked caution. We have vaccines now, the word endemic is being floated around, and things are slowly looking up.

In April of 2020 — right at the beginning of the stay-at-home orders — things were different. The news was filled with data and fear, and — in those earliest days — the coverage of folks who had actually contracted COVID-19 was often second hand. So, when a longtime friend tested positive, host Christopher Beale got in touch. This week we will present Armando’s story called “Activity Found.”

Also, we re-visit Marilyn Pittman’s 2005 portrait of the late, great San Francisco queer icon Sylvester. As you’ll learn, a lot of the mainstream drag we see today was inspired by her. In this piece Marilyn chats with Josh Gamson, who wrote the biography, “The Fabulous Sylvester.”

Please help us keep bringing queer air to your ears. Out in the Bay is an independent non-profit production. We receive no funds from podcast platforms nor from radio stations that air Out in the Bay weekly. Your gift will help keep LGBTQ voices and stories coming to you and others who might not be able to give. (Donate tabs on our website will take you to a Media Alliance interface. Media Alliance is our non-profit 501(c)3 fiscal agent. Your gift will be earmarked for Out in the Bay.)

The Executive Producer of Out In The Bay is Eric Jansen. This edition of Out in the Bay produced, hosted and engineered by Christopher Beale.

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Christopher J. Beale is an independent radio host, producer, and journalist living in San Francisco.
Eric Jansen is a long-time broadcaster and print journalist. A former news anchor, producer and reporter at KQED FM, San Francisco; KLIV AM, San Jose; and Minnesota Public Radio, Eric's award-winning reports have been heard on many NPR programs and PRI's Marketplace. His print work has been in The Mercury News, The Business Journal, and LGBTQ magazines Genre and The Advocate, among other publications. He co-produced the June 2007 PBS documentary Why We Sing!, about LGBTQ choruses and their role in the civil rights fight.