Friday, December 19, 2008

All New! PSA

So we moved into our new place. And being from a place where the sun actually functions, we didn't think about certain things, like sidewalk salt, that you think about up here. And uh, I fell and broke my ass. Yeah. My ass, knee, and (somehow?) neck were severely battered by my impromptu attempt to get airborne yesterday morning. So now we have sidewalk salt on our very slippery, icy back steps. And I have a really interesting bruise.  If you live somewhere cold, please salt your steps and sidewalk. Pretty please.
(My ass is expected to recover.)
That is all.

Thursday, December 11, 2008

I'm Poor As Hell But Twice As Pretty

So with this move, I forgot that internet takes a long time to set up in advance- longer, if you're me, apparently. So we have no Net at our awesome new place, for at least the next two weeks. 
So unless I get motivated and go to Starbucks to post my latest angst-fest, you won't see much of me. 
Bear with me here, I'm gettin' the shakes without my daily hit of Interwebs.

Thursday, December 4, 2008


So I got an interesting wake-up call the other day. My Ferret and I have been apartment-hunting for the last few weeks or so and we finally found one we liked. The landlord was a friendly, good-natured guy and we were in the process of signing the lease, when he checked her work reference and came out of the other room with a... well, a look on his face. My Ferret is quite butch and she gets mistaken for a dude all the time. Our landlord-to-be had made the same assumption and finally figured it out, and he was- I think the word is flummoxed. 

We'd already made it quite clear that we were a couple, and he was having trouble reconciling the nice, normal couple he thought we were with the people his church and political views say are Bad. I could almost see his thoughts swirling.
He was nice about it- just said some things about being surprised, stammered a bit, made reference to he and his wife being all Christian and Republican. I told him so are most of my clients, as well as Ferret's family, and asked him, straight-up, if this was going to be a problem. 
He said it wasn't a problem, for him, personally. I'm not sure what that meant, and I'm still a little wary.
I'm pretty sure it's federally illegal to deny someone housing on the basis of sexual orientation (can someone tell me if I'm right about that?), but hell, I'm not going to live where I'm not wanted. I had a file full of other options in my computer.
The thing is- his surprise surprised me.  I generally treat being gay as no big deal, and assume others will too. This is partially because to do anything else would be to admit to the Othering that society wants to do to me, and partially because that's how I've always done it: where I come from it IS no big deal. In SoFlo, there were pockets of rightwingers and fundies, but mostly it's considered declasse' to raise a ruckus if someone mentions that they're gay.
Apparently, not so much the rule here in the MidWest. I have the feeling most of the people in this town have never met a gay couple, much less seen them interact like any other couple does. I know there are indeed gay folks here, but I haven't seen many, and I'm told they're "very discreet", which I think is straight-speak for "they know their place and don't make us nervous by being open or acting like actual couples".

Ferret- well, if people don't assume she's a dude, they kinda just jump to "dyke", which saves a lot of dancing around. She's as open as I am, with the "if they don't like it, fuck 'em" mentality. It's pretty rare that anyone tries to mess with her anyway.  

 I know I have white privilege, able privilege, and passing-for-straight privilege. This is the first time I'd realized: I had "location privilege". Just someone being taken aback by us, much less maybe-resistant to us renting from him, shook me. What must it be like for so many other gays, trapped in the heart of the Bible Belt, or ultrareligioconservative towns or families? Without support or a place to be open about themselves? What must it be like to hide who you are, all the time?

I chose not to hide. I'm proud of who I am and playing the Pronoun Game gives me a headache anyway. But I didn't realize how easy life made it for me to choose, how lucky I was to have that choice at all. It all makes me very uncomfortable, and sometimes it makes me wish I was back in South Florida.

Tuesday, December 2, 2008

"Did Your Mother Abort You?"

I have asked many people: “Did your Mother abort you?” Before they could answer, I answered for them, saying, “No, she did not. She gave you life.”
What a stupid fucking question. And how convenient that he answers for them. Y'know, I was gonna quote Cara's response to that, and then reply, but instead I'm just gonna link to her article about the SD Abortion Ban Attempt of ought-eight! and you can read her takedown of that awful trope.
And instead of posting this as a long-ass comment on Cara's thread, I decided to post it here and see if I'd get my Very First Troll! So here goes:

I was a wanted baby. Really wanted, first child, mom-standing-on-her-head-after-sex-to-get-pregnant wanted. That makes me really happy, and my mom's never seemed to find her firstborn lacking in redeeming qualities, so I feel I haven't been a letdown in the face of all that anticipation (kinda like having a kid that's the equivalent of socks and underwear for Christmas). And oh by the way, now that I'm here on Earth, I kinda dig it, so that's cool. I'm glad my mom had me, don't get me wrong.

But you know what? Had circumstances been different? Had my mom gotten pregnant at a bad time (couldn't afford, wouldn't have been able to go to school, in a bad relationship, etc.), or before she was ready, or if she just hadn't wanted a kid? Had that been the case, if I could *magically* have told my mother what I, the zygote/fetus/embryo, would've wanted? It would've been for her to have an abortion. I love my mother, and wouldn't have wanted her to give birth to a child she wasn't ready for, couldn't take care of, that might damage her life and that she might resent having to raise. It wouldn't have been to subject her body to nine months of physical and emotional stress only to have to deal with the (probable) emotional wrench of handing me over as soon as I was born to strangers or an indifferent State system. 

For my sake, I wouldn't have wanted to grow up in the overcrowded, oft-hostile fostercare system. I wouldn't have wanted to grow up knowing I was responsible for family hardships or that I was an unwanted burden, or worse, being told that by my parents. And oh yeah, there are some sanctimonious pricks who preach that "We should all Choose Life, because they/she had an Unplanned Pregnancy, but they/she Had The Baby" and they do indeed say just those things to their kid. 
If your mother had aborted you, you'd have no consciousness to know it, and thus it wouldn't bother "you", the embryo, about whom the whole fuss is about. If your mother had you because she was forced/coerced/had no other choice, your life and your mother's are likely to be a whole lot different.

And since I'm not afraid to put the personal in the political, I'll say this. If it were me, making this choice, having an unplanned pregnancy? Well, (aside from the fact that it's highly unlikely at this point and that I'd have to do a lot of explaining to my girlfriend,) I know I don't want children. Not now, pretty much not ever. If I do go crazy enough to decide I want that kind of sacrifice and responsibility, I'll adopt a kid: there're way too many kids who need a home to be just bringin' more into the world, willy-nilly. So IF I were to get pregnant? I'd have an abortion. I've known that from the first time I contemplated third base. I don't presume to tell other women what they must do, and I'm unapologetic about the choice I would make.
The life of a living, breathing, thinking woman should top the rights of a bunch of cells using her for a life support system. Sorry, sounds harsh. But true.

Sunday, November 30, 2008

Sexy Breakfast Foods

So my everfabulous Ferret was itchy in some of her bodily parts the other day and asked me if I had anything to make her feel better. After the requisite eyebrow-wiggling on my part, I brought out the Holy Grail of lotions- Aveeno Fragrance-Free Daily Moisturizer. Having wildly sensitive, winter-itchy skin means I spent a LOT of time finding something soothing. 
I spend a lot of time rubbing this stuff into my lower legs and making Herbal-Essence-commercial-y sounds.
My beloved asks me, "Is this stuff any good?"
"Oh yeah" say I, "it's for sensitive skin and has colloidal oatmeal in it".
She looks at me with utter confusion and asks, "So, like, they put the oatmeal in after it's had sex??"
...Oh my.
One discussion of the difference between colloidal and postcoital (and some lotion) later, the Ferret is enlightened, less itchy, and ready for bed.

But sometimes, not everything pisses me off. Sometimes, it's the little things that crack me up laughing that make me realize just how damn lucky I am, and that I do occasionally have real things to be thankful for. 

....postcoital oatmeal! *still laughing*

Thursday, November 27, 2008

Narrow, Reactionary and Judgemental

And today, folks, I'm talking about me. Because I did something I've never done before: cut off someone who used to be a friend on a philosophical difference. And I feel like shit about it. I've always been of the opinion that if someone is a good friend, agreement isn't always necessary. I have a friends who disagree with me on politics, religion; I'm friendly with an ex who regards my feminist standpoints with (highly irritating) amusement; hell, even my Ferret doesn't see eye to eye with me on the importance of proper moisturizing. But we can work it out, it's cool. 

The thing is, I also realized, being my friend also implies some inherent assumptions: you think I'm as good as everybody else, you think I'm fully human and worthy, and you care about my well-being. 
And today, someone I thought was an IRL friend wrote a blog entry about Prop 8 and gay civil rights that smashed all those fragile and carefully-held assumptions I'd clung to so stubbornly, and it was just the end. 
Let no one say I can't cite my sources for outrage. Here're some quotes:

"...LGBT's are gonna be shoving this down our throats for the next six months to a year until they get their way."
"I honestly don't care about same-sex marriage. It doesn't effect me, and if it were up to me, sure, let 'em enjoy all the trials and tribulations of marriage. Because life is just so much better when you do your taxes with your hump-buddy, and when breaking up involves a divorce lawyer on top of looking for an apartment and deciding who gets to keep the Barbara Streisand CD's."
"Like I said, I don't really care enough either way. What I disagree with is that they KEEP PUSHING FOR IT. ...Seriously. It's been denied in almost every state, in arenas both political and judicial, denied by the Supreme Court, Congress, and countless other institutions that this country's system of government relies on to make decisions. It's been proposed. In most cases, it's been shut down. Just move to Maryland and get over it."
:It's just part of the growing trend of "Things are only good if we (whoever we happen to be at the time) get our way" I see in this country. And I honestly see it as the beginning of the end of America."
Oh, and there's more. When I fired off a seriously angry reply (and he knew I would read it and reply), there was more. My reply wasn't exactly mature, thoughtful, and considered- observe my wrath.

There is so much wrong with this entry I almost don't know where to start. But how about here: dumbass, "majority rules" isn't how our government actually works. If I hear one more asshole talk about 'judges legislating from the bench', I'll scream. Fucktard, the majority should not be allowed to decide on rights for minorities. For one, that's fucked up. Nobody should be allowed to decide someone's civil rights. For another, it never works; the majority is incapable of making decisions that benefit anything other than itself. "The majority" didn't end segregation. The Supreme Court did. And by the way, unless you are a member of an oppressed minority of second-class citizens- which you aren't- you don't have the fucking right to tell that group to get over it. ... Just because you've never experienced what they have, or don't understand it, doesn't mean it's invalid. 
...Now, YOU are perfectly free to marry the person you love; hell, you can marry some random stranger in Vegas, as long as she has a vagina. But I can't marry the person I love. THAT is fucked up. A bunch of people who don't know me deciding whether I'm worthy enough to be treated like a whole human being? THAT is the beginning of the end of America. So no, getting over it ISN'T A FUCKING OPTION!, you libertarian asshole.
So yes, I am EXTREMELY pissed off at you for this. And hey, thanks for saying you "don't care" either way. That's real generous of you, pal. You know, you have gay friends, but you couldn't just be supportive of them, oh no. You had to be a complete dick about the lack of civil rights for a group you know nothing about. You're really not as astute as you think you are.

So yeah, lots of anger, but it doesn't mean I was wrong. And you'd think he wouldn't have the audacity to defend himself... nope. So this is my blog therapy, folks; I'm gettin' allll my rage out. Here's his reply, and OUR (double-barrelled) mean, angry blog-sponse to it. My comments are in blue, and in a wacky spurt of angry guest-blogging, please observe my Ferret's bitchy comments in yellow:

"Alright... let's cover ground I've covered before. You are not being denied a righ [sic]. 
Oh, well then! I feel much better now! 
Wait a second: life liberty and the pursuit of happiness- you sure none of these rights are being violated?
 You are bound by the laws of the country you live in.
Newsflash: not now nor ever has "law" and "good" ever been entirely synonymous. 
In this country (in most states, anyway), Sodomy (defined as anal or oral copulation with a member of the opposite sex, copulation of any kind with the same sex, see above. and/or bestiality) is illegal.  
Because straight couples get arrested for having anal or oral sex all the time.
 Also, in this country, a marriage isn't considered to be legally viable unless it is consumated (involving copulation with one's partner). 
Uh, how will they know? Big Brother is watching? 
Thus, to legalize gay marriage, and to allow those marriages to be considered legally viable, every gay couple that got married would have to be fined or arrested under decency code laws. Or people would be allowed to marry their dogs. 
Aw come on, not that bullshit again. Even the fundies have started to let go of that. 
Exactly how many laws and/or world-wide recognized definitions of words do you want them to change just so you can file your taxes together? 
Just the one, as far as I can tell. 
Worldwide? Last I checked, Christianity (and its definition of marriage) rules less than a third of the human population.

The bottom line is, there are plenty of places in the world (and even a few in America) that gays and lesbians CAN get married, with all benefits thereof. Yeah? La-dee-fuckin-da. Blacks had their own drinking fountains, yet they weren't satisfied. Hmmm... Yeah, she's being nicer than I would.

"But I don't want to move, I want them to change the law everywhere." That doesn't seem in the least bit selfish to you? 
Uh no, it seems like federal equality. Call me selfish. You mean, wanting my civil rights is selfish? How about you move instead? Like to Hell's Waiting Room.

Making phone calls, writing letters, and marching in parades takes little-to-no dedication. Moving to a different state (or in extreme cases, a different country) does.
Read as: "Move away, so I don't have to think about or be responsible to the people I'm helping to disenfranchise".
Wait, so I can try to change the law for everyone's equal rights, or just move? Which is easier again?
 That is why Democracy is an inherently flawed system, and how it leads to a nation-state with the "gimmies". It no longer takes dedication, it takes finding enough people who agree with you to make the news (or to make lawmakers uncomfortable).
And that doesn't take dedication? As though all you have to do is go out and say, 'Hi. Sign this.' at random and suddenly all the laws change. 
And you know we wouldn't want the poor lawmakers to be uncomfortable.
From there, it's just a series of "gimmies". Once the people realize that they don't have to leave their country to get a government they like, the ship is sinking fast. 
Yeah, how dare people think America should have a government that treats everyone equally?
I'm sorry, I snoozed through that part. It sounded like "blah blah, blah blah, I'm always right, blah blah selfish welfare people, blah blah my penis blah". Did I miss anything?

And seriously, being treated like a "whole person"? Marriage is a tax break, nothing more. Uh, really? Are we using the same dictionary? If you need a piece of paper to tell you that you love the person you're with, there are a lot more problems than the political system here. 
Someone graduated from Deliberately Obtuse University, with a major in Missing The Point.
Yes, there are other benefits to marriage, oh really?? ya think?? such as insurance policies that extend to one's spouse, undisputed legal entitlement to inheritance, etc. But those laws CAN be changed easily, and already have been in many states. 
And HOW much in paperwork and legal fees does that require, again? While straights can just get a marriage license?
In most of the U.S. it's now possible to name a domestic partner, or ANYONE, for that matter, as a beneficiary. 
Uh-huh. Sure, pal. Cause separate-but-equal has worked SO well in the past.
In closing, I've said it a thousand times before, but I'll say it again here: An unbiased opinion is the ONLY valid and viable opinion. [insert mad cackling laughter here] By being a member of a minority group, one's opinion on the treatement of that minority group is inherently and unavoidably biased. 
Yes, because the majority's opinion of the treatment it receives is totally unbiased. Sounds like Fallacious Logic, 101. 
A neutral party is the only one who can offer a clear-headed, unbiased opinion. Oh, like yours, you mean?
And like I've said, MULTIPLE times, if it were up to me, a neutral party,hey I was right, he did mean himself! gay marriage would be legal.
 Oh, thank you! Cause I need your approval. No, really.
 If it were up to me, a LOT of things in the legal system would be different. Carrot Top for President! But they're not. 
Awww, come on. Nobody likes a pouter. 
And they're the way they are because the legal system that defines this country has declared it as such. 
Again with "law" always being the same as "the right thing". You gotta let go of that. 
You get gay marriage when I get the right to kill drug dealers. Getting married and playing God aren't the same.  Sound fair? 
No, not really. What did that have to do with anything?
And you're right, I do have gay friends. 
Well, you have a few less after this post, I bet. Asshole.
I also have friends that do drugs, and think they should be legalized. I don't think the laws should be changed for them, either. 
Did you just seriously compare gay marriage to drug use? Really? REALLY?? 
 There's a difference between being supportive and changing your views on a subject simply because you're friends with someone who doesn't agree with you. 
You're right. There is. But there's a bigger difference between not agreeing with someone and not understanding why they deserve the SAME friggin' civil rights as everyone else. So we can't be friends. I'm sorry. 
I'm not!

Wow, this turned out to be a really long post. Congratulations, anyone who got to the end! 
So, I'm feeling angry and guilty and maybe also angry about my guilt, and now I'm all typed out. Any thoughts?

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Willie Nelson Can Spark My Pipe Anytime

Okay, I know, that's SO disturbing. BAD Lemur. 
I was watching Colbert's Christmas Special on Comedy Central (yes, I know, more bad). But there was a section with Willie Nelson as the Fourth Wise Man- you know, the one who brought the "most fragrant gift of all" to the Baby Jesus. And then he sang a song about peace, love, and mari-ja-wanna! I can't help but love a song that includes the line "/and let not mankind bogart love".
Also, Willie still sounds really damn good. Sing it, man, sing it!
So ya know what? I enjoyed it. I got love for Willie.
And I've got love for you guys out there in cyberspace. I know Thanksgiving is a screwed up American tradition (just ask a few million dead Indians), and I know sometimes it ends up with the cranberry sauce splattered all over the walls and your drunk uncle face-down in the green bean casserole. (Or maybe that's just my family. Anyway.) At its best, Thanksgiving is a time to come together with your family, biological or chosen... and also for three kinds of pie (maybe that's just us, again).
Love to you guys, and if you're the type to have a little something beforehand to make the turkey- or the tofurkey- taste even better, more power to ya.
Happy Thanksgiving, and don't bogart the love.

Sunday, November 23, 2008

My Letter to Obama

So I wrote a letter to our new President-Elect. I don't know whether it will be answered or even whether it will be read, but I had to write it. So here it is, because it made me cry, because it's my own personal teaspoon, and because even if Obama doesn't read it, I want someone to. I need hope.

Dear President-Elect Obama,

I could be writing to you about a lot of things. I'm a small-business owner, and I could be writing to you about corporate monopolies in America. I'm a gay woman who can't marry her partner in this state, and I could be writing to you about that. And maybe I will write about those things one day, but not today. Today I'm writing to you about my brother. He's 18 years old and will be 19 the day after Christmas. He's in the Air Force, an Airman fresh out of boot camp. He went in right after his high school graduation. I'm so proud of him, and I'm also worried. You see, at the end of January, he's being stationed in Moody, Georgia. It's what they call a "shipping-out" station. It's very likely that he'll be sent to Iraq or Iran.

My brother is younger than I am and for many years he annoyed me to distraction, because that's how younger siblings are. But he's older now, and we're in different states; only one of my mother's kids is home with her in Florida now. She misses us, I know, but she wants us to do what we love. And he does love his job, loves the Air Force. Whenever I speak to him, he's happy. He's not worried about the future, because he's 18, and like every other teenager, deep down he thinks he's invincible.

 He wants to come home with a jacket full of medals, marry his girlfriend, and become a police officer. And I want that for him. I don't want him to have to spend any more Christmases away from home. I don't want my mother to cry at night because she's afraid of what will happen to him over there, whether he's in a high-casualty zone or not. I love my kid brother, and I'm proud as hell of him, and I don't care if he comes home with medals. I just want him to come home.

Mr. Obama, I voted for you. A lot of people voted for you because we, and I, think you are indeed the hope and change this country has needed so desperately for so long. You have my support, the support of my business, and the support of my blog, even though right now they're both small and unimportant. I'm very glad you will be our next President, and so are a lot of other people all over the country. 
But now that you've achieved your dream, you have a sea of people standing in front of you, asking you to help achieve their dreams, and I guess I'm no different. It's not a bad dream, not a bad wish, I think. It's this; I don't want my brother to go overseas. I don't want him to get hurt or killed in this stupid, dishonest conflict. I don't want him to have to know how it feels to take a life, either. Not for this, not for someone else's greed and bad decisions.

Sir, I know you're not all-powerful, and I know you have a hard task ahead of you. But if you're taking requests, this is mine: End this conflict. Please. Bring these soldiers home. Do everything you can, because even though he's just one guy in a uniform, one Airman among many, my brother is irreplaceable. And all of these men and women have sisters, mothers, someone at home who loves them. Someone who is worried and crying and writing them letters and waiting for them to come home, like me.

 -[Sabertooth Screaming Lemur]

Monday, November 17, 2008

SNTDBIDW: Blamin' the Black Folks

I co-opted the title of this post from one of my favorite concepts at Shakesville: Shit Not To Do Because It Doesn't Work, a PortlyDyke creation.
Have you guys seen this? Renee sounds a little annoyed, and I don't blame her. It seems that a lot of folks in the liberal blogosphere- GLBT and feminist and both- are blaming the seemingly large amount of POCs in Cali that voted The Suckiest Prop Ever into being. Apparently ALL black people are this huge monolithic hivemind (like feminists) and apparently there are NO gay black people. Oh and NO black Republicans, or Evangelicals that just happen to be black, or... yeah. See?

C'mon, guys. Not cool. Can we stop? I know, this Prop is the most awful thing I've come across in my (admittedly short) political-watching career, and I know laying blame is a really attractive thought. Hell, this is so fucked up, I wanna blame SOMEbody. I'm trying really hard not to go find the nearest Mormon and slap 'em, since the Church of JC of LDS in Utah financed a big chunk of this. 

But I'm trying to remember that all the members of a certain group cannot be held responsible for what some or even most or its members choose to believe or do. Once we start working that way, how are we any better?

I want us- LGBTs and allies, black or white or whatever you are- to keep our sense of community and our sense of hope. Turning on each other does us no good, especially now when hope and morale are low. It's the last thing we need.

Are we done? Can we all start picking up pieces for the next round of fighting for our rights now? 

Sunday, November 16, 2008

More Fuzzy Blogging

So... the cat, a few weeks ago, caught a mouse. Admittedly, she needed a practice run first. (The practice run involved grabbing a mouse that was already caught in a trap and bringing it- trap still included- downstairs to play with.)

I know, this is a small thing, right? She caught a mouse. Mice die all the time. But still. I wasn't sure how I felt about it. Life is precious, even a mouse's life. Also, have you ever stepped on a mouse corpse at 5 am when you get up to pee? The correct wording in that situation is "Ack!"

But I know I prefer cats to traps, if mice must perish. And I don't know why except it seems like cats are more fair. Cats are meant to catch mice. Traps are these inanimate objects we bait with cheese and then- snap! It's too convenient. Cats catching- and theoretically eating- mice is part of How Things Are, that traditional mindset that influences the way we live because It's Always Been Done This Way. Usually this is bad. Is it bad this time? Or is cats and mice part of the balance to be maintained? Is this compatible with my beliefs? Should I praise Haven's hunting skills or scold her for violence? Mice must die so that she may live. 

And so they don't poop everywhere and nibble the entire house to pieces. In a house with mice, cats are necessary.

Am I being hypocritical because I don't want to think of Haven as a fluffy little killer?
...Well, maybe.

That conclues this week's Incoherent Random Posting!

Friday, November 14, 2008

To Say Thank You

So I'm taking another break from my break to write, again, about something I feel is important. I'm hopeful that this may indicate an end to my blog-reluctance, and that I'll start posting regularly again soon, for all five of you that missed me.

But this isn't about me. I know, everything's about me- but this time, it's not. It's about Melissa McEwan, founder of Shakesville, the most awesome liberal blog ever. I mean it. It's a safe space and a community of diverse, insightful, brilliant bloggers. It's also the place to find YouTubery, random funny stuff, and blistering commentary about social justice and politics.
Because of this, it gets a lot of shit, both from trolls and from its commenters, because liberals, not being brainwashed, can't do a damn thing without dissent and argument.

And Melissa has to deal with all of it. Running that blog is a full time job, and she does it. And she doesn't get paid for it. She deals with trolling and sniping and bullshit that would make me chuck my laptop out a third story window after a day or two, and she writes at least one post every day, besides commenting and moderating on the other threads. And she does it all while building a sense of community and progress.
She deserves a lot of appreciation for what she does every day, and there've been some difficulties over there lately.
So I did what I never, ever do for anybody online- I clicked over to the "Donate" button. I know, it's no big deal, but it is to me. It was my first time ever donating to a blog, but it was highly deserved and if I had more I'd have given more. I don't have a lot of money, but hopefully my little bit will help to let Melissa know that her efforts don't go unnoticed in this corner of the Net.

So what I'm saying is, if you read and enjoy Shakesville, you might consider clicking the little button on the sidebar also. It's surprisingly painless.
If you don't read Shakesville, what the hell are you waiting for!?

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

The Good, the Bad, and teh Gay Rights

I'm taking a break from this break to post about the elections and all that jazz. First, Obama yay! I'm so happy and so relieved. I don't have to move to Canada! AND I live in a house full of Republicans. I was doin' the Happy Dance! 
Now the bad... Prop 2 passed in FL. This isn't going to be good for anyone. Gays, straight couples just living together, elderly "roomates"... I'm hoping this shit gets overturned because it's ridiculous. 
And also, it's looking like Prop 8 in Cali is going to pass as well. And I don't get it. How can you take someone's rights away? Does this mean all the gay marriages done there in the past year are null and void? How can people do this?

...But at least we have a Democratic president. I have hope. I have hope, now- that these things, as fucked-up as they are, are just  temporary setbacks on the road to equality and total citizenship. 

Yeah, Conservos, fear my fuckin' agenda. I wanna marry my partner and have some health insurance, maybe buy a house. We might even... get a dog. Shit yeah, your marriage is in trouble now- we're fuckin' it up for you, just by being so damn GAY and CUTE and shit. 

Sorry... had a cranky moment. Okay, I'm going back on vacation for a while now. My Ferret is in need of some hugs. Okay, folks, do the happy dance, rejoice, and get Obama's feet in the fire on getting us our rights! ...Oh, and read this poem, from one of the posters at Shakesville- it's all hopeful-like. We need some more hope. 

Sometimes by Sheenagh Pugh

Sometimes things don’t go, after all,
from bad to worse. Some years, muscadel
faces down frost; green thrives; the crops don’t fail.
Sometimes a man aims high, and all goes well.

A people sometimes will step back from war,
elect an honest man, decide they care
enough, that they can’t leave some stranger poor.
Some men become what they were born for.

Sometimes our best intentions do not go
amiss; sometimes we do as we meant to.
The sun will sometimes melt a field of sorrow
that seemed hard frozen; may it happen for you.

Tuesday, October 28, 2008


Sorry to anyone currently reading. I know there's been a definite lack of updates. There's been a lot of stuff going on, much newness-that-needs-to-be-adjusted-to, and also sickness-that-I-need-to-get-over.
So, because of that, and because I haven't been on my game lately, blogwise, I'm taking a short hiatus. Probably just for a couple weeks. I started this blog, and I love doing it, but all of a sudden I'm putting this pressure on myself to be a successful blogger, and write posts that people want to read, instead of just stuff I want to write. And that kinda freaked me out too, the pressure. Even self-pressure. Yeah, I'm kinda dumb sometimes. Life is this series of mini-freak-outs, and then constantly getting myself back together.

I'll be back.

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

Dear Hollywood

...Can we, pretty please, just once, have a movie where an unexpectedly pregnant woman actually gets an abortion
I know it's too much trouble to ask that she not be horribly scarred for life by it. 

But seriously, mainstream movie guys... could you ignore the "choice" part of pro-choice a little more? I can't hear you out there in delusion-land. Everything in the movies can be resolved happily in under two hours
In real life, though, there's usually no deus ex machina to save the day for a woman with very few resources and not enough options. 

Could we maybe have some art actually imitating life, please? I know realism is too much to ask from you, Hollywood, but it'd be great if you could manage to let go of the fantasy and take one step closer to showing the world how it really is.

Friday, October 10, 2008

Both Woo and Hoo!

Conneticut has legalized same-sex marriage!

Connecticut’s Supreme Court ruled Friday that same-sex couples have the right to marry, making that state the third behind Massachusetts and California to legalize such unions.

The divided court ruled 4-3 that gay and lesbian couples cannot be denied the freedom to marry under the state constitution, and Connecticut’s civil unions law does not provide those couples with the same rights as heterosexual couples.

This rocks my queer socks! Hooray for love, equality, and Connecticut gay folks! Yay for CT Supreme Court! Social Justice-flavored ice cream for everyone!

...Read about it here, here, and here. Oh, and here's an actual article.
h/t Cara

Thursday, October 9, 2008

Green Skin Optional

As I was saying, I hate the reducing of an important part of history and culture to an opportunity for yet more cheap commercialism. I fucking hate it with a fiery passion, and with this holiday it's personal.

Witches are a big part of the imagery of Halloween; hell, lots of girls dress up as a witch at some point. But honestly? I find it to be as stereotypical and lazy as putting on some buckskin and a feather headband and calling yourself an "Indian" for Halloween. It's othering, it's tired, and frankly it annoys me. Am I being "too PC"? Am I spoiling your Halloween fun? Yeah, I don't care. The next stupid 'witch' image I see is gonna send me running for the hills; I just can't get away from them. Toss-up whether it'll be of a "sexy witch" in a black minidress or a "spooky witch" with green skin and warts.

I'm a witch. I'm a Wiccan. They're not the same, just so you know.
And would you believe it? I don't ride a broomstick. I don't own a cauldron, or turn people into frogs (although that might be kinda cool), or have green skin (who the hell has green skin, anyway?), or wear a pointy hat. I have a cat, but she's not black.

I have no problem with "mainstream Halloween". Holidays are important for a reason. They're part of the culture that shapes us, and that's a big deal. Also, who doesn't love an excuse to party? It's fun, and maybe someone occasionally thinks about the 'why' behind the costumes and candy- anything that sparks intellectual curiosity can't be too bad. The problem I have is with throwing on a tired stereotype because it's easy or because it came with a short skirt. There are so many things to be, can we please just kind of retire this one thing? I promise the mummies won't revolt, nor will Frankenstein's monster, nor the Wolfman, if scary's what you're after. Vampires are still up for grabs, even.

Seriously, before you go out dressed as a witch for Halloween this year, totin' your broom and wearing your pointy hat, think about it. Think about how offensive you'd say it was to do this to say, Asians, or POCs- yeah, some idiots still think "blackface" is funny. It's maybe not quite as asshole-tastic, but it's a matter of degree, in my opinion. You aren't a witch, a Spanish senorita, or a Japanese geisha (unless you actually are), so why appropriate these images for this one day, instead of doing something creative? Hell, you could be the sexiest mustard bottle ever.

Think about it. And think about the very angry lecture I will give you, should I happen to see you dressed as a witch.

Tuesday, October 7, 2008

Chocolate and Dead People

We take a break from our regularly scheduled feminist snark to bring you: Wicca snark!
The lovely SublimeFemme was asking about my Halloween plans and while they do include pumpkin carving and trick or treating with my little sibs-in-law (henceforth known as Thing Red and Thing Dino), they also include my Samhain-night ritual.

For those who're pagan-challenged, Samhain (usually pronounced SOW-in or SAH-vin, but please, not Sam-hayne) means "end of summer", and is the end of the pagan year. It's also known as All Hallow's Eve. It occurs on either October 31st or November 1st. It's a night for celebrating the final harvest, acknowledging the dark half of the year, and if communicating with spirits is your thing, it's a night for that too. It can be rowdy as hell or a solemn ritual, or both.
I don't know if you know this, but a lot of Halloween traditions come from this festival. It was a night for frightening away evil spirits with faces carved into turnips, for lighting bonfires to warm the dead or scare them away, for slaughtering the last of the livestock for winter storage and gathering the last crops (any left after this day were considered the property of the dead, and left in the fields).

Why am I explaining all this? Because it struck me that they don't teach the history of Halloween in most schools, and most people get their information from candy companies and scary movies. Oh, and Disney. And I hate the reducing of an important part of history and culture to an opportunity for yet more cheap commercialism. This is also something very personal and important to me, and it's my blog, dammit.

So now you know. We have treats, jack-lanterns, costumes, bonfires, and tricks because some dead Celtic guys didn't want to deal with a bunch of pissed off ghosts on this one night of the year. Well, sort of.
More on Wicca, Halloween, and stuff later, here at "things that piss me off dot com"!

Friday, October 3, 2008

My Un-Professional Take on Last Night's Debate

I couldn't watch too much of last night's debate- my almost-dad-in-law was watching too. Since we're on opposite sides of the political spectrum, I think it would've disturbed him to hear me yelling "IT'S 'NU-CLEE-AR'! SAY IT RIGHT! LEARN TO TALK, YOU FREAKIN' HICK MORON!", along with the other choice things I might've said that aren't the top of one's lungs... in a house where children reside... and were at that point sleeping. 
If you want an actual (and funny) opinion on the debate, I recommend Melissa from Shakesville's article in the Guardian.

All I have for you is this nifty flow chart I yoinked off the internet from, after I cleaned tea off the keyboard (what? It's funny!).

One other thing: Biden did say he and Obama would support same-sex couples having all the same Constitutional rights and benefits as hetero couples. Finally. So, I'm cautiously optimistic about that. At least he gave a straightforward answer, and Palin... well, watch and cringe. Queers United has a post up about it with a video showing both Biden and Palin's reply to that question.

Sarah Anti-Sexism PSA: We don't have to make fun of her looks, her family, or anything having to do with the fact that she's female. The amount of fail she brought to the debate was pretty much enough. So please remember, when you crack on Palin, do it for the right reasons. 

Sorry kids, that's all for today. 
h/t Shakesville for the flowchart and Melissa's article.