Dar Williams, for Sally G
If we really gave out Honorary Lesbian Hot Plates, Dar Williams might be the first on the list to receive the illustrious award. The longtime singer-songwriter, who Ms. magazine dubbed the “intellectual folk queen,” was a staple on the college progressive circuit in the 90s. And remains today a radical and resonate voice worth an honored straight-but-definitely-not-narrow spot on anyone’s favorite LGBT artist playlist. I mean, she wrote a song about lesbian pagans in 1996, come on.
Jennifer Beals, for Ying Z
Speaking of honorary lesbians, you can’t bronze enough hot plates to honor Jennifer Beals. Just say her name in a group of lesbians and you’re bound to get a low, involuntary moan from the crowd. Mmmm, Jennifer Beals. Because, let’s be honest, we all love a bossy Alpha sometimes. And there is no better than Alpha Bette. This Crush is dedicated to Sabrina Liu.
Zoie Palmer, for @jocool70
Some women are just lesbian catnip. (Please see above and Alex Vause.) And they don’t get more catnippy than Zoie. From the first moment her big, warm brown eyes pierced into our souls, we were hooked. I’ve stopped eating apples entirely out of hopes that one day Dr. Hotpants will pay me a house call. Hey, you have your dreams, I have mine.
Fabiola Gianotti, for Audrey Z
Italian particle physicist Fabiola Gianotti leader a team of the top physicists in the world that helped to discover a little insignificant thing called the “God Particle” last year (well, Higgs boson if you must be formal). Finding what could be the particle responsible for all the mass in the universe is just your average no big deal. Except the opposite. The achievement earned her runner-up status as Time’s 2012 Person of the Year. So if you ever hear anyone tell you girls can’t do math and science, tell them to stick it up their Higgs boson. But first, they’ll need Fabiola Gianotti to find it for them.
Michelle “Shelly” Jane Allen, for Andrea Shively
They met long ago, in that galaxy far, far away. Shelly and Andrea, set up on a blind date to go see the 20th anniversary rerelease of “Star Wars.” Their relationship progressed like so many relationships – the adventure of late night phone calls, the excitement of Uh-Haul move ins, the thrill of parenthood and the sparkle of wedding rings. Shelly was a fourth grade teacher for 11 years and Andrea’s rock for 16. The couple adopted two sons together – Ty and Gray. In October 2008, before Californians voted in that most awful Proposition 8, they married. And though the last eight and a half years Shelly fought that most awful of all – cancer. First breast cancer, which was found when she was only 30. Then two years later she had preventative surgery to remove her uterus and ovaries. Two years later still a local reoccurrence of breast cancer popped up (found two days before their wedding day). Two years later again, thyroid cancer was found – this time in Andrea. Then on New Year’s Eve Day 2010, Shelly was diagnosed with cancerous Stage IV tumor in her tibia. Then it was discovered there was cancer throughout her bones – including a tumor pressing on her spine that forced her to quit teaching in 2012. Finally, in June of this year, at age 38, Shelly lost her fight with cancer. But the measure of a life is never its breadth or in simply breathing. What matters isn’t fame or wealth or power. What matters is the love we spread while we’re here. And while Shelly belongs to the stars now, Andrea, Ty and Gray remain a testament to that love on Earth. Rest in peace, Shelly.