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Make it Better

Playwright and writer Topher Payne

My husband and I are not keeping complimentary schedules lately. We still see each other every day; unfortunately one of us is always sleeping when it happens. Our most consistent interaction is by phone, or checking each other’s status updates on Facebook. We’re actually having a long-distance relationship while living in the same house. Promises have been made that things will improve very soon, but looking at the upcoming calendar, I’m not entirely certain that’s true.

Because Preppy gets up at five, he’s asleep before I return home from the theater. So I take the dog out of her crate and hang out on the back porch, catching up on emails and YouTube. I’ve viewed the trailer for “Burlesque” at least 20 times. First off, I’m pretty sure it’s a remake of “Showgirls,” which is very exciting.

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This Land is My Land

Playwright and writer Topher Payne It’s a rare night off, and I’m having some quality time with my husband and my dog. The three of us are all engaged in our favorite modes of relaxation — Daisy’s monitoring squirrel activity, Preppy’s playing Angry Birds, I’m finding out if Lindsay Lohan ran over any baby carriages today. The calm is broken by Preppy jumping up from the table, bellowing.

“Daisy! Leave it! Damn it, Topher, she’s got my shoe!”

“Well, you shouldn’t have taken it off.”

“Whose side are you on here?”

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Out of the Closet

Playwright and writer Topher PayneI have a talent for taking very small projects which could be completed in 20 minutes, and through careful evaluation, finding a way for them to consume the better part of a week. My husband would tell you I do this intentionally, in a clever plan to force him to unload the dishwasher himself, because me doing it will somehow lead to the kitchen being repainted.

I prefer to think of myself as very thorough. I enjoy projects, in much the same way that people with OCD enjoy hand-washing.

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Best of Atlanta: People

After two months of online balloting and more than 20,000 votes cast, we present the best of the best — our inaugural Best of Atlanta winners.

It all started back at the beginning of May, when we asked you, our readers, to nominate your favorites for dozens of awards in the categories of Community, People, Nightlife, Dining, Retail, Pet Services, Internet, and Outside Atlanta.

The top three finalists — or more, in the case of a tie — in each category made it through to the next round of voting. For the month of June, a multiple-choice ballot asked you to pick among the finalists for who really represents the finest in LGBT Georgia.

Thanks to everyone who voted, and congratulations to all of the worthy winners and runners up.

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Find forbidden ‘Loot’ at OnStage Atlanta

The cast of Loot

Topher Payne was looking forward to taking a vacation after his recent play “Christina Darling,” but when he learned that auditions for “Loot” were coming up, he knew a vacation could wait. “Loot” opens June 4 at Onstage Atlanta.

Written by gay playwright Joe Orton, “Loot” debuted back in 1965, where it was met with some hostility from those not expecting its satirical tone. The play is a farce about two young men, Hal and Dennis, who are thieves. After robbing a bank next to a funeral parlor, they have to hide the money — and wind up stashing it in the coffin of Hal’s recently deceased mother.