Kimberley Bush believes strongly in LGBT-themed films as one might expect — she’s director of One in Ten, the group that stages the Reel Affirmations Film Festival, which kicked off Thursday and is in full swing all weekend (see reviews starting on page 31).
Bush, a 43-year-old Westchester County, N.Y., native, sells real estate for Long & Foster in Georgetown by day and describes herself as a person who’s “always on the go, working or making something happen and always on.”
She does find spare moments; she enjoys ceramics, running, yoga, making soap, traveling and, of course, film.
She’s single and lives in Alexandria. (Blade photo by Michael Key)
How long have you been out and who was the hardest person to tell?
I would say about 25 years. It all started when I was around 18ish and at that age I was in college so my Mom was the hardest to tell. She was not a happy camper. But she did embrace me at some point.
Who’s your LGBT hero?
Phill Wilson, the founder of the Black AIDS Institute. People of color have been lost in the media, health care system and in general around the fight for/about AIDS/HIV and Phill is/was key in bring people of color to the forefront in regard to awareness/education, public policy and advocacy.
What’s Washington’s best nightspot, past or present?
I have to say Tracks in SE was amazing back in the day. Consistent women’s night, outdoor space for all kinds of fun, music — just a great time!
Describe your dream wedding.
It of course stars the woman I adore and cherish completely and ideally would be out of the country. It begins at sunrise and ends at sunset. A simple, down-to-earth, lovely celebration with good food, friends and family to celebrate our union.
What non-LGBT issue are you most passionate about?
Racial and cultural equality. I am quite sensitive to individuals being treated fairly and appropriately in the workplace and in society in general.
What historical outcome would you change?
Dr. Martin Luther King’s death. He had so much more to do for all of our communities.
What’s been the most memorable pop culture moment of your lifetime?
When Ilene Chaiken put her foot in it, and created “The L Word.” It provided an open environment for lesbians to see themselves elsewhere and not just in our everyday situations.
On what do you insist?
A must have in my life is a high level of integrity. What I insist for myself is to put my best foot forward every day, acknowledge how fortunate I am regardless of the outcome of the day and walk through the world with positive energy, patience, tolerance, understanding and positively affecting others.
What was your last Facebook post or Tweet?
Twitter: “@reelaffirmation Reel Affirmations 21: Washington DC’s International LGBT Film Festival is 2 DAYS away. Come out and support this Thursday through Sunday, Nov 1st – 4th #RA21”
Facebook: “it is several hours after I finished the 37th Marine Corps Marathon & while this is a huge accomplishment I am unsatisfied w/ my performance. Unfort round mile 13 both my calves seized up. In my training were I would run 20 miles per run I NEVER had this problem so this was problematic. I learned that my potassium/salt intake was low! Who knew? I had to grow a pair & kick the last 13 miles’ ASS!”
If your life were a book, what would the title be?
“Anything is Possible”
If science discovered a way to change sexual orientation, what would you do?
Bust every test tube, contaminate every trial, discredit all involved.
What do you believe in beyond the physical world?
What’s your advice for LGBT movement leaders?
Regardless of the this year’s presidential election, I would urge our leaders and advocates to continue their efforts and perseverance to the acts, bills and legislation that affect us all on the day-to-day basis.
What would you walk across hot coals for?
To have my mom back. My mother unexpectedly passed away a few years ago and it was more than a shock to my system. This loss was devastating, leveling, extraordinary. We were each other’s support system, friend, confidant, biggest fan — we were each other’s everything, and even though I know she is with me in spirit, I would walk across the world on hot coals to have her back in my life.
What LGBT stereotype annoys you most?
The fact that as a community we at times see it necessary to take on distinct gender roles in our same-sex relationships. In print, we are often portrayed as one person wearing pink with long hair and makeup while the other has on blue, short hair and more pronounced manly features. As a lesbian, and knowing many people in our community, we all know you cannot help who it is you are attracted to. Society has created this mold that we unfortunately have begun to play into even if that same society has yet to grant us the same rights to live and be happy.
What’s your favorite LGBT movie?
As an active participant in the nation’s fourth-largest LGBT film festival for the last several years, there are so many films that I appreciate for their production merit, content, depictions, powerful storylines, character development, poignant life lessons and the ability to move people while changing lives. This select list personally resonates with me and has a forever place in my DVD collection: “Gods and Monsters,” “Boys Don’t Cry,” “Bad Education,” “A Single Man,” “High Art,” “Paris is Burning,” “Fire” and “Before Night Falls.”
What’s the most overrated social custom?
I am guilty of it, but when you think you HAVE to bring something over to a person’s house for a gathering.
What trophy or prize do you most covet?
Even though I have run several half marathons, the MCM medallion was always in my sights. This year I no longer have to covet this medal, I trained and completed my first marathon, the 37th annual Marine Corps Marathon and now have my medal to show for it.
What do you wish you’d known at 18?
At 18, you are trying to get to the next level, do more, be more and now that I have grown up, I am realizing that you just have to work with what is before you. I shouldn’t have worried about life getting any better. It is what it is and I should appreciate what life has to offer.
It was a family decision. My mom was an analyst for a telecom company and she moved our family here in 1989 to continue her career and upward mobility. After moving here I stayed to be close to my mom. I learned to like the area and do enjoy what it has to offer socially and culturally. Let there be no mistake made that I am happy here, but at this point in my life however, I do infrequently think about moving back home to Westchester County, New York.