Monday, July 31, 2006

There's No Place Like Homophobia

I love this story. A nice couple opens a bed and breakfast in a small town in Kansas. On a trip to Dorothy's House, a museum in nearby Liberal, Kansas dedicated to the Wizard Of Oz, their twelve-year-old son buys them a rainbow flag. They put it up outside their inn.

The yawning gates of hell proceed to open beneath them.

The local newspaper runs an article on the "gay" flag. They never even bother to contact the inn's owners, a lovely couple named J.R. and Robin Knight. The local radio station threatens to pull the ads for their restaurant. A town preacher confronts them over the flag, proclaiming that the flag is the equivalent of flying women's underwear from their flagpole. When J.R. Knight jokes that maybe he will do that next, the preacher threatens to have him arrested.

And then there is this moron:

Local resident, Keith Klassen says the flag is a slap in the face to the conservative community of Meade. “To me it's just like running up a Nazi flag in a Jewish neighborhood. I can't walk into that establishment with that flag flying because to me that's saying that I support what the flag stands for and I don't," says Klassen.

As this commenter on the Stranger blog sarcastically put it:

My conservative aunt and uncles survived the "Great Kansas Purge" of 1974, when gay thugs rounded up the decent, God-fearing Americans, and sent them to the camps.
We Will Never Forget!

Of course, this all ended as you suspected, when someone cut the flag down. But never fear. The Knights, though breeders, are cool as hell. They ain't backing down:

Said Knight: Any gay or lesbian people that do stop by will be treated with the best service I can give you. When this rainbow flag shreds, I will buy another one, and another one, and another one - just like my American flag, I'll buy another one."

Queers who heard about this over the blogs are rushing to support them by booking rooms at their inn, rooms they may never use, to thank them for what thay are doing, standing up for others, even though it's not "their" fight.

Finally, something that's not the matter with Kansas.

Thanks to Towleroad for the heads-up.

Thursday, July 27, 2006

Hot Enuf Fer Ya?

A rather bland piece in the New York Times today discussed the numerous heat-related deaths in California in the last week. But this was by far the stand-out gem of a paragraph:

Actress Lindsay Lohan, 20, was overcome by the heat while filming a movie in 105-degree weather on Tuesday and treated at a hospital for overheating and dehydration, publicist Leslie Sloan Zelnick told ''The Insider'' entertainment show.

I guess that's what happens when it gets hot enough to freebase off the sidewalk.

Don't Ask Don't WHAT THE FUCK!?!

You know what America doesn't need? It doesn't need decorated Army sargents who speak fluent Arabic. Yeah, that's what America doesn't need. I know that because the Army just spent eight months investigating a soldier with the 82nd Airborne, with the melodic name of Bleu Copas, to see if he was gay, based on the sole evidence of a few anonymous e-mails from some spiteful soul. When they determined that he was indeed a fag(he refused, as is his right, to answer the questions) they threw him out. They've spent almost 370 million dollars throwing gays out of the military since 1993, including a number with expensive specialty training like Sargent Copas, as well as a few decorated Iraq war veterans. Your tax dollars busy at work, folks.

Damn, I fell like waving a flag right about now. I just don't know which one.

Wednesday, July 26, 2006

Listening At My Desk

I've had Rabbit Fur Coat by Jenny Lewis (late of Rilo Kiley) and the Watson Twins for a while now, but listening to it this morning I was hit hard by what a fine record it is. Melodic, alt-country influenced songs with sharp, funny, sad and political lyrics serve to make it a sweetly timed look into our current state of national and personal disrepair. Rise Up With Fists!!! is now the default on my Myspace page. Jenny mixes large and small themes together like one of those people you know who has something smart and a bit silly to say about everything. Here's the lyrics from Born Secular:

I was born secular
and inconsolable
I heard that he walked
he walked the earth

God goes
where he wants
and who knows
where he is not

Not in me

It's the way
mothers greet their sons
when it's a moment too late
It's the law of the land
But sometimes the dam just breaks

God works in mysterious ways
And God gives
and then he takes away

From me

Tuesday, July 25, 2006

Lack Of Faith

George Michael was caught by a tabloid photographer having sex in the bushes at Hampstead Heath with this good sport:

A 58 year old unemployed truck driver from Brighton.

Here's what Georgie had to say when he stumbled out of the bushes:

"Are you gay? No? Then fuck off! This is my culture!"

That is so wrong, on so many levels, I hardly know where to start.

From time to time, I suffer from what my black friend (like Steven Colbert, I only have one) Anson and I call Model Minority Syndrome. That's the tendency to suffer embarrassment when others in the minority group in which you find yourself do or say stupid things. Did I really want Rosie O'Donnell riding the bus with me? Did I really want Carson Kressley doing color commentary at the Miss Universe pagent? Model Minority Syndrome may be terribly unfair, yet I still cringe when a public homo like this train wreck

uses our common identity to excuse his bad behavior. Being a queer in no way excuses Lesbian Mullets, Madonna worship, and cottaging in Hampstead Heath. I mean, come on George, if you were that hard-up, you could have at least just gone off to The Hoist.

Thanks to Joe.My.God. for the heads-up.

BTW, Hampstead Heath is also where Kevin Spacey was "mugged".

Behold The Atheist's Nightmare

Indeed. This may be the greatest example of bad logic I've seen in ages.

By the way, I once accidently knocked Kirk Cameron on his ass in a ski lodge in Park City. It must have shaken something loose.

Wednesday, July 19, 2006

Child Soldiers

Here's a photo of a lovely young Israeli schoolgirl signing a bomb to be sent to Lebanon, to, you know, kill people.

Man, talk about acting like children. In the past, I've been highly sympathetic to Israel. The hatred evinced against the Jews in the Muslim world only makes you want to stand up for them. But this is getting ridiculous. They may be the only functioning democracy in the Middle East, but they are acting more and more every day like a rogue state. Israel has a right to exist, but they have kept a captive population imprisoned for generations now, and this latest round of attacks on civilian targets in Lebanon stinks of nothing so much as collective punishment. If there are any supporters of Israel out there, please tell me how Israel's current course of behavior is making the world safer for Jews? That's what most of the Jews that I know want, a safer world. That is a reasonable goal that Israelis can agree on, except if you are one of those crazy-eyed orthodox settlers with the mandate direct from Jahweh, in which case, have at it. Just don't expect me to care what happens to you. So if the goal is a safer world for Jews, how are we getting there from here?

I've joked in the past that Israelis need to realize that the real promised land is the Fairfax District, but I'm starting to think that if I were an Israeli, I might believe the same thing. When you are a minority, it is always necessary to maintain at least some sympathy from the majority to survive. That's a sad fact of life. Israel is spoiling the goodwill of the world towards their state and their people, making it easier to dismiss them, as the French ambassador to the U.S. famously did a few years ago, as "that shitty little state". I don't want this to happen to Israel, but it seems ever more likely, one dead civilian at a time. Pretty soon only the crazy-eyed evangelicals who misread Revelations will support them. And unless they are planning on moving their entire nation to Alabama, well...

Then again, it's not like we are a lot better in that whole "missile message" department...

Thanks to Joe.My.God for the photo.

Monday, July 17, 2006

Slouching Towards Jerusalem

Holy Crap, you know that little war over there in the Middle East, no not that one that's feeding good Oklahoma boys to Gog and Magog, I mean the one with those suspiciously well-armed Hebrews and their nasty neighbors (I tried to warn them about that neighborhood, but no...). Well anyway, we finally have the mystery of this particular little dustup fixed. Don't blame it on Hezbollah. It's all because Jeebus is mad at teh gay again. Lordy.

Friday, July 14, 2006

Blood From A Turnip

So, here we go onto Round Three. If you are just joining us, please read the first two parts below.

Anon wrote:

Oh Spenny, I am sorry that you have spent soo much of your time trying to defend your actions to those who really know you (as do I). You forgot to mention that you felt the warmth of the spirit while wearing your Mickey Mouse Shirt. The problem that you have and can't escape (because of your upbringing and serving a mission) is that you know and have felt the truth, but you have to make a million excuses to validate why you chose your path.

Well, Anon, I don't own a Mickey Mouse shirt, so I can't really make that claim, although it is called the Magic Kingdom!

Nor can I know if you really know me or not, because I don't know who you are. You continue to provoke without the courage to stand behind your words, to speak with an assumed authority that cannot be tested or validated through the veil of the internet. Not surprising, that.

Really, Anon. You don't "feel" the truth. You learn the truth, by putting it to the test. You choose to reject the the things I have learned in my life and presented to you out of hand, because they do not conform with your own unchallenged beliefs. That is the definition of a closed mind. Not once have you asked me "how do you know these things" or "why do you believe this". In fact, you haven't addressed anything I've said at all, choosing instead to simply reject and attack me, because what I say is not convenient to you. This is exactly the kind of arrogance I was speaking about before.

While I'm on the topic of arrogance, let's deal with your assumption that you know me at all. You may have known me once, that is true. But people change. Hopefully, we grow wiser as we grow older. I certainly feel like I've learned a few things along the way, and I've got a lot more to learn. You, on the other hand, don't seem to evince any interest in learning anything at all. Of course not. You already know the whole truth, right? Lucky you.

This is the self-righteous mindset that destroys people. This is the mindset that leads to fundamentalism. This is the mindset, that when followed to it's natural end, leads to suicide bombings and Sharia law and lynchings and witch hunts and crusades and Oklahoma City and my friend Alice Hoglan's son going to his death on 9/11 and the Mountain Meadows Massacre. It is the mindset of closed knowledge, a hermetically sealed world where all questions are already answered before they are asked, and unanswered questions are rejected out of hand.

I'm not the one who needs excuses, Anon, because unlike you, I am comfortable with ambiguity. I accept that there are things that I don't know, questions that have not been answered, facts that are inherently contradictory. Read the Bible, brother. I mean really read it, not simply the passages that they highlight for you in Gospel Doctrine Class. Sit down and devour the book from end to end, like I had to my Sophomore year in college. If you do, then maybe you will see that contradiction and conflict and ambiguity and confusion and struggle and criticism are all there in the fundamental foundation block of Christianity.

But do you really want to do so? Do you really want to try and think objectively about the things you are told by others to believe? Where could that lead? What if that makes you actually, you know, reject something you come to see as wrong? Isn't that scary?

Look, you may actually care about me, or you may not, I don't know. What I do know is that you are acting like a coward. You refuse to reveal yourself, which is cowardly. But far more importantly, you refuse to listen to me, which is an action based on fear. You won't engage my ideas, you are afraid to engage my ideas, so instead you will only attack me by trying to tell me what I "really" must believe.

Why, Anon, are you so afraid?

BTW, I've taken the time to respond to you because I care about you, not because I feel any need to justify my life. It's a cheap rhetorical trick to to start a dialogue with someone and then criticize them when they care enough to carefully and thoughtfully respond. Would you have felt better if I had just told you to sod off? I didn't, because I believe it's important that we share our wisdom with each other, that we share the things we learn. That's why I keep the blog. You just gave me an opportunity to explain some of the lessons I've learned along the way. The fact that I took the time to do so should not be held against me, Anon. It's called giving a shit, brother.

I guess the next step is when you tell me that you'll be praying for me, right?

Anon Part Two

The discussion continues. I apologize to my non-Mormon readers, as some of this might fly past you, but I hope you get why this matters. Skip down and read the previous post if you haven't already to get the context.

Anon wrote:

Spencer, talk as you will, it looks like college got to your thinking and that you had a bad incident in the church, and I know who your referring to......sorry

(the "bad incident" he refers to was one I mentioned in the comments section of the posting below)

Wow, right away with the ad hominem attack. Come on man, you could have at least addressed a little bit what I was arguing, instead of just attacking my education.

Bizarrely, though, you didn't follow the normal ad hominem route by attacking me as uneducated. Instead, if I understand you correctly, you are attacking me as too educated.

Think about that for a minute.

First of all, let me clear up a misperception you may have about my college experience. If you listen to a lot of talk radio, you might get the impression that college is full of religion-hating left wing secular professors whose only goal is to break down the faith of impressionable young students. My own experience is that that is a load of hogwash. Yeah, I may have had teachers who fit that bill but my professors also included a devout Jesuit priest, a famous Neo-con philosopher who'd been in the Reagan Administration, and a committed Aristotelian who had some serious doubts about whether the earth really revolved around the sun! In other words, it was a diverse bunch. I learned lots of things in college, but there was really only one important thing I learned. That was the importance of applying reasoned critical analysis to any claim.

In other words, they taught me to think objectively about things. To ask why, how, what evidence supported a claim. It didn't matter if it was a math proof or a political theory or a claim about the nature of God, you put it to the test as best you could, struggling to see all the consequences of the claim, all its weaknesses and strengths.

Yes, I did this in regards to the values I was taught growing up. Many of those values came through this process stronger and clearer to me. This was especially true when reading the four gospels. I felt that in Jesus teachings there were many ideas that were incredibly wise and reasoned.

However, I will admit, some of the things I learned in church failed even the most basic questioning. They just didn't stand up to reason. At that point, I was faced with a dilemma. Do you know the allegory of Plato's Cave? Once you've come into a little bit of light, it's pretty well near impossible to retreat back into the darkness. The Good Lord had blessed me, just like he has blessed you, with a spirit of discernment. By applying that spirit, I realized that while there were many valuable things in the gospel I'd been taught as a young man, there were also many bad ideas, and those bad ideas had consequences.

Which brings me to your second point. You say that you know of the incident to which I made reference. Supposing it is indeed the same incident (and I actually heard rumors that there had been more then one) I'm really surprised that you would just blow it off. Let me be clear. A man in authority in our ward molested several young girls. The mother of at least one of the girls went to the bishop. The bishop, using his authority over the woman as her spiritual leader, threatened this mother with disfellowship if she made this claim public knowledge. To this date, the man who did this, and the bishop who entered into a criminal conspiracy to cover it up, have never been brought to justice. The Stake President who found out about this incident, while sympathetic to the mother, also did not step forward to bring this to justice, thus continuing the conspiracy. As a result, this man continued to be a free and respected member of the community and may very well have gone on to repeat the behavior. Justice was denied. Justice to children.

So, yeah, I'd say that's a bit of an incident. But rather then just writing it off, you should think for a second about the consequences. A church, claiming divine inspiration and authority from God, uses that authority to cover up a heinous crime and protect one of its own. Doesn't this call into question the source of the church's authority for you? Doesn't it make you wonder what kind of an organization would put the avoidance of scandal above justice to a harmed child?

Anon, if you are my age, you are into your mid-thirties. You are an adult. Adults have to be responsible for their actions. You have been living in a bubble, and that bubble needs to be burst, brother. If you can justify the covering up of a crime because of your faith, if your faith makes you believe that education is a bad and dangerous thing, then your faith is asking you to be both passive and ignorant. You were not put on this planet to be either.

Look, I know how wonderful faith can be. I know the amazing feelings of warmth and security that comes with taking part in the rituals that you have known since childhood. I too have felt the spirit, the warm glow of the still, small voice. But here's a little secret that I've also learned, and it doesn't have anything to do with college "getting to my thinking". The truth is, the spirit is in you. It is part of you. It doesn't come from some distant planet, it doesn't come from a man in Salt Lake City, it doesn't come from a particular building or ritual. Rather, you can find it in many different places. Personally, I have experienced the warmth of the spirit in a museum, at a concert, and in the wilderness. I've experienced it standing on a Manhattan sidewalk and in an Anglican church in Santa Fe. I've experienced it listening to records, reading books, and while sitting at my desk. We are programmed from a young age in the church to believe that the only source of the spirit is through the church, through it's institutions and rituals and prayers, so we automatically associate it with these things. But we don't have to. You can feel the spirit throughout you wherever you go in this life. Many of my deepest spiritual experiences have come at moments when I realized how narrow and constricting the faith of my childhood had been. The spirit is in us, Anon, it is our birthright. My guess is that it is in every sentient human being on the planet, whether or not they have heard of Joseph Smith. When I think of the claims of exclusivity that I heard growing up, that ours was the one true church and the only one chosen by God, it just boggles my mind. The spirit lives in all of us, Anon, all six billion of us. You won't ever lose it if you choose seek it out in your life.

I'm not saying that you can't seek it out through the faith into which you were born. You can. I cannot, because of the bigotry of the men who lead the church. Because of this bias, I am in a position analogous to a black person prior to 1978; I can only be a Mormon if I choose to be a second-class Mormon. My inherent dignity won't let me make that choice. You are lucky that you don't have to make it Anon, and that you can still receive nourishment from your communion with this particular church. But I am also lucky, Anon. By forcing me out of the church through their own narrow mindedness, the leaders of the church have forced me to find my spiritual nourishment elsewhere. And guess what? I have. I very much have, and I think I am a better person for it. Realizing that I wasn't one of the "chosen few", or that rather, everyone is chosen, has been both humbling and enlightening. It's filled me with more love for my fellow human beings, and broken down the false walls that were built up in me by the prideful teaching of exclusive power and authority that is a big part of Mormonism. Rather, I've had to learn that Mormons are not unique, that like all people, we want to find solace and peace and belonging in this life. Sometimes though, we get carried away and claim power and authority as well. That's where the trouble starts, where the long road to fundamentalism and tyranny lies. It lies in thinking that you are the only people with the whole truth.

You are not. Neither am I. But I am searching, Anon. I am keeping my mind open and striving, yes, to educate myself, to learn and grow in knowledge. Any religion that asks me not to do so, that asks me to be willfully ignorant of all there is to know, is really of little use to me these days.

There is one more truch I'd like to claim, Anon. That spirit I was talking about earlier? That spirit is love. Love of ourselves, love of others, love of life. I try to find that love every day.

Thursday, July 13, 2006


Dearest Anon,
You have written me a couple of missives recently. Normally, I would not bother to respond to anonymous flames, since I usually assume that someone who doesn’t sign their name lacks the courage of their convictions. But it seems with you that you actually know me, or knew me, back in my adolescence and young adulthood. Because of this connection, I believe that you deserve at least the minimum courtesy of a good Fisking. So here goes. You wrote:

Spenny, it sure is weird to see you acting like a crazy looney(sic) gay guy. Did you erase your CTR ( Choose The Right ) Tattoo that you have on your ankle? Have you completely forgotten about all the girls you danced with at the Church Dances. I am sure that in time all your values will come back and you will bring out the nice old CTR Tattoo.

Let’s start with that first line.

Spenny, it sure is weird to see you acting like a crazy looney(sic) gay guy.

Wow, no one has called me Spenny in years! It’s kinda nice. First off, I’m not acting. What I write on my blog, in my freelance work and my filmmaking, is what I truly believe. Unlike the bravado performance I was putting on back in my youth when I was pretending to be a person I was not, this is not an act. Let me also assure you that I am not, indeed, crazy. I have a full bill of mental health. Back when I was still a church-going Mormon, I did have some problems in that regard. I struggled mightily with depression for a time, even using prescription drugs to treat it. Since I left the church behind though, I’ve been in a robust state of emotional health. Sure, like everyone, I have to deal with the stresses of life, but the depression that once haunted me has dissipated like a fog. Does that have anything to do with my former religious convictions? I can’t say definitively, though I would point out that Utah has the highest rate of anti-depressant perscription in the nation. Just sayin’.

On the other hand, I do cop to being occasionally loony. As well as zany, wacky, and even madcap. You know, like the next door neighbor in a bad sitcom.

As for the gay guy part, well, let’s skip forward a bit in your letter.

Have you completely forgotten about all the girls you danced with at the Church Dances.(?)

Nope, I certainly haven’t forgotten those lovely girls I danced with. I remember them. I remember the “No Pelvic Thrusting” rule. I remember that Modern English song they always played. And I very much remember dancing with these pretty girls and feeling nothing for them, while gazing over their shoulders at the guys I secretly wanted to be with instead. It’s a pretty universal experience for people like me. I also remember that I really liked to cut a rug. Yeah, I was a total solid gold dancer. That, dear Anon, is what we call a clue.

Did you erase your CTR ( Choose The Right ) Tattoo that you have on your ankle?

Angelina Jolie aside, erasing tattoos is a tricky business. So you will be pleased to know that it still resides there above my left ankle bone. Even more so, it still reminds me to do the right, a little talisman of caution to act carefully and always consider the consequences.

However, it’s not alone, that tattoo. It’s been joined by others. There is the flag of the California Republic, to remind me of where I come from, no matter where I go in the world. There is the Gadsden Flag, the famous “Don’t Tread On Me” with a coiled rattlesnake. That one serves to remind me to always be suspicious of organized power, especially that of the state. Then there is the seal of the Muscogee Nation, my father’s Indian Tribe, to remind me of my blood ties to this land, and the price my ancestors paid during the colonization of America. Along with my Mormon ancestry, that particular symbol helps me to recall that there are two sides to every story. Next up in the cue will be the symbol of my Alma Mater, St. John's College, with the Latin inscription I love, which roughly translates into "Through books and science we make boys into men".

But the tattoo that is dearest to me is a small one only a few inches from the “CTR”. I got it on an impulse a few years ago in Natchitoches, Louisiana. I’d been thinking about my “CTR” tat, and what it meant. I decided to get a new tattoo that symbolized the lessons I’d learned since I’d gotten that first ink, back when I still believed that the “Right” was whatever they taught us in Sunday School. My new tattoo instead spoke to what I have learned in the long journey since. It’s one word, that runs in black letters down my Achilles Tendon, that famous weak spot of ancient mythology. The word?


I am sure that in time all your values will come back

The logical fallacy here is presupposition. You assume that my values have somehow ‘left” me. But they have not. Indeed, I feel that I am living in closer adherence to my true values then at any time in my life.

One of my values is honesty. It is a value that I frequently abused when I was younger. I lied to you, Anon. For that I am sorry, and I apologize. I lied, by not sharing with you the deep doubts I had about our far-fetched religion. I lied to you by suppressing my anger at the arrogance and abuses of power I saw in the leadership of that very church. I lied to you about my own makeup, who I am, the critical mindset that has been a part of me since I was a child, even something as basic as who I am attracted to and with whom I fall in love. I lied, although I will say in my defense, I lied for a good reason. I lied because I loved you, and I feared you would reject me. You see, another of my values, Anon, is unconditional love. It’s a hard value, maybe the hardest, but it was a value that I was taught was a fundamental part of the gospel. Yet it was not a value that I frequently saw put into practice. Now Anon, because you are anon, I don’t really know who you are. But there is a good chance that you are someone I loved. If that is the case, let me assure you. I still do love you. I love you no matter what you’ve done with your life. I love you even if you have done things I believe to be morally wrong, even if you have given support to organizations or people I detest, even if you no longer love me. I love you if you drive an S.U.V. and shop at Wal-Mart! What I do know, Anon, is that if I had been honest back then, if I had told you and those others around me who I really was, the reaction would have been one of rejection, revulsion, and maybe even hatred. I know, because I saw just that directed at those unforunate souls who, for one reason or another, failed to fit in. Rather then unconditional love, I saw over and over the practice of disfellowship, an idea that is anethema to Christianity.

Nothing saddens me in my life as much as the friends I have lost, the people once dear to me who are no longer part of my life. I would want nothing more then to still carry those friendships and ties to my past. But I could not do so at the price of lying about who I am. I tried, and it was far too much to bare. It almost killed me. So I live with this small hole in my heart, where I keep the memory of all those whom I once loved, but who turned their backs on me. Oh, and before you say to me that you would love me again if only I would just change into something that I am not, let me assure you. That is not love. That is self-righteousness.

OK Anon, I’ve given it to you pretty good here! I know how much Mormons usually shy away from dissent, and so I hope I haven’t stuck my blade in too deep. I only hoped to draw a little blood, not to hit any major veins or arteries. I realize that if you were just to read my responses above to you, you might get the impression that I am bitter about my upbringing. Yet I am not! I knew many wonderful people in my youth, and they shared with me plenty of wisdom about life. I would never renounce those whom I loved, nor am I specifically targeting the faith we shared, which I find no more or less guilty then any number of other faith-based belief systems (I’ll spare you the lecture on my doubts and fears about faith in the unseen in general, because that’s not what I think you were asking for when you wrote me). I would like to think that your words, no matter that they came off to me as a bit condescending, were spoken out of genuine care for me. It’s interesting that you bring up values. The word, of course, refers to what we value, what brings us happiness and joy in this life. I don’t have any lasting measure of bitterness about the things, right and wrong, that I learned in my Mormon community, because my life is far too occupied with things that I value now to be concerned with the past. Here is a list of things that I value. They are in no particular order, and of course some of them are more valuable to be then others. I’ll leave you to guess. This is what my life is about now:

Good country music. The Perfect T-Shirt. 15 a side Union Rugby. My Mom, always. Dim Sum. Mt. Washington. Patrick O’Brien novels. The Daily Show. Nieces and nephews that are sweeter then sugar. My Australians. Oklahoma. Vintage Mercedes. Making fun of the modern-day Pharisees. Luke, the Basset Beagle. Anti-war protests. The American Red Cross. Road trips with my dad. The upstairs room at Old Compton’s Pub in London. Emmy Lou Harris. Good dark beer. The Phoenix, in the East Village. The Hegalian dialectic. Charles Mingus. Anson King, my best black friend. Haitian food. Chinatown. Sex. Music biographies. Bach’s St. Mathew’s Passion, the most spiritual piece of music ever written. The Windes Brothers. Austin. Standing up for the legal rights of queers, oddballs, and brown people. Screwdrivers. Bruce Springsteen. The Neue Nationalgalerie in Berlin. Shows at The Echo. Fixing the broken election system. The Silverlake dog park. My amazing sisters and their solid husbands. The Isiah Berlin fox and hedgehog analogy. The island of Manhattan. Dan Savage. The ACLU. The Arroyo Parkway. Film Festivals. Left-wing Jewish politicians. Cowboy boots. Aristotle and the catagorization of things. Public radio. Sushi. The Utah mountains. Immigration rallies. Elliot Smith. Richard Neutra. Santa Fe. The End Of Faith, by Sam Harris. Big Love. Human Rights Watch. Concilience, by Edward Wilson. My ex-boyfriend. Butt Magazine. San Francisco on a cold day. My producer Amy. The four Gospels of the New Testament. Thai food. The Stonewall Democratic Club. Running on the elliptical trainer. The Bingham Cup. Knowing that while my life may not matter much over the long course of history, I am unique, and I have the responsibility do the right thing towards others and to try and keep those I love safe and well. Euclid 1:47. Gillian Welch.

These are some of my values, Anon. They have never left me, and they never will. I hope you can find it in your heart and mind to stretch a little, and consider some of the things I love. Who knows, maybe you’ll discover some values of your own that you’ve kept hidden under a bushel, like I did for so long.

Wednesday, July 12, 2006

Queer Cars?

The web site has compiled this list of the ten most researched cars by the Friends of Dorothy who visit their site:

1. Saturn Sky
2. Toyota Yaris
3. Dodge Caliber
4. Volkswagen Jetta
5. Toyota Camry
6. Audi A3
7. Toyota Prius
8. Saab 9-3 (sedan and convertible)
9. Pontiac G6 (sedan, coupe and convertible)
10. Mazda MX-5

OK, I'm calling bullshit on this list. Here's my reasons:

1) The words "gay" and "Pontiac" should never appear in the same paragraph. Except as a derogatory, or course.

2) Excuse me, no Mini Cooper? Have ya been to San Francisco? They're like designer-colored cockroaches.

3) Just as how Jesse Jackson speaks for all black folks and Jerry Falwell represents each and every follower of Jeebus, I personally speak for all the 'mos, and I see no mention of any sweet 1989 190E 2.6 liter Mercedes-Benz on this list.

As for the Caliber, that is easily explained. It comes equiped with a CVT, and if there is any phrase in the automotive lexicon that is gayer then an easter parade, it has to be "Continuously Variable Transmission".

Or at least they say that they are "continuously variable" when you're checking them out online. Then you get them home to the garage and you realize that they are really just a butched-up manual, and as usual you still have to do all the hard work yourself.

Thanks to Jalopnik for the heads-up. Davey knows how to feed us fegelah gearheads!

P.S. What about this sled:

It don't get no gayer then that.

Why I Love L.A., Reason #341285

From Craigslist:

Unique Touristic Experience for People Visiting Los Angeles. Are you visiting Los Angeles this summer with friends and family and looking for a totally unique LA Experience? Well I think I just might have it.
I'd like to invite you to come clean my apartment. Yes thats right a real Los Angeles apartment, in the heart of old Hollywood. Whats even better is that while you work tidying up my tasteful 20's era space you will be regaled with stories of hollywood old and new, as told by a real working Director(me) and my Screenwriter roommate. Wow! But it gets even better. While you and your family clean my place (once occupied by Johnny Depp in his 21 Jump Street days) I'll be photographing the whole thing. Big Beautiful professional photos that you'll be able to take home and show friends. Just think of it, large 8x10 photos of you and the kids cleaning and deodorizing my stainless steel refrigerator.

Who knows what else could happen, maybe one of my up & coming actor friends will stop by for a chat and some autographs. We're talking real b-c list celebrities here people, up close and personal(but no touching beyond a polite handshake).

Thanks to Defamer for reminding me how batshit-insane my city is.

The Notorious J.C.

What happens when OC white boys rap 4 Jesus? Here's the answer.

Actually, I think he's kinda hot.

Tuesday, July 11, 2006

Short Bus Blogging

You know the urban myth about someone actually taking an article from The Onion seriously? It happened a few years back when a Chinese newspaper published this story they wrote, about Congress demanding a new "luxury" Capitol building, as fact. Well, now this moron named Pete has managed to take a satire about abortion seriously. Then, rather then cop to it when he gets his shit called into question, he tries to justify himself, then insult the education level of the literally thousands of commenters who have been laughing it up at his expense.

Pete, keep it up. You are fast becoming a star of teh internets!

Monday, July 10, 2006

Sexy? Yes?

Visitors to my Myspace will recognize this. As will readers of hip alternative papers, billboard viewers in NY and LA, and fashion-whores the world over. What is sexy, you ask?

Thursday, July 06, 2006


Wednesday, July 05, 2006

Who Says There's No Gays In The Military...

Pic courtesy of Wonkette.

The Last Refuge...

Man, I wish I had been at this Fourth of July celebration:

That old lady in the back looks like she could bite the head off a bat.

Overheard In Laguna:

"I've got sooo much sand in my Speedo!"

"I don't care if you say that I'm a thick bitch."

"It was like this spandex stuff, and it kept riding up and making a bubble on my ass."

"Are you going to the Boom?"


"Girl. Girl. Girl! Girl? Girl... Girl."

I love my queer peeps, despite their hideous taste in swimwear.

Monday, July 03, 2006

National Security Gnostics

My personal 3rd Rule Of American Politics is this:

Losers blame the press.

Over and over we see this pattern of politicians who couldn't cut it piling onto the fourth estate. From The Big Dick's drunken "You won't have Nixon to kick around anymore" speech after he lost the California Governor's race, to Spiro Agnew's "nattering nabobs of negativity" attack when the press inconveniently dug up the brown paper bags of cash he's been receiving through the back door of the Governor's Mansion in Annapolis, to the bitching of my Kerry-supporting friends when the press went to town with the swift-boat accusations, as if those attacks would have lasted one day if John Kerry had had the authenticity to confront them head-on.

Losers blame the press.

And what better opportunity to do so then as you manage to lose a war?

The recent attacks on the press for the crime of doing their job is the symptom of a larger dysfunction. Our founders explicitly recognized the role of the press as a check on government power, and that is what reporters are doing when they bring to light the ugly things the Administration is doing in the Endless Struggle Against A State Of Mind that they love to call teh war on terra.

Daniel Patrick Moynihan wrote a book shortly before he died called Secrecy to warn us that the expanding secrecy of the national security state was a grave threat to democracy. Reading the book now eight years after it was published, it is possible to see exactly how the ever-expanding regime of "classified" information is threatening the basic functioning of our system, as decisions are increasingly made by those with "clearance" working in a vacuum free of criticism or even open feedback, and not by the citizens who fund this increasingly secretive hegemon. The hacks and lackeys of the right-blogosphere and media who publicly support this ever-hungry beast must see themselves as priests guarding the secrets of the Holiest of Holies without ever actually knowing the knowlege within; they count their own ignorance as a blessing and ask for more. It's just these kind of blindfold reactionaries who demanded physical retribution against the staff of the New York Times over the weekend.

Happy Independence Day.