Monday, December 29, 2008
So shut yer traps and let me wish you all a joyous, happy & healthy New Year or whatever it is that you celebrate around your house at this time of the year! (Saturnalia?)
This was my 11th sober Christmas, in case anybody is counting, and although the fear of being magically struck drunk has long since left me, it can still be a time of dredging up and sifting through unpleasant childhood memories of the drunks I lived with while I was raising myself. Fortunately, I don't do much of that anymore. I have, finally, put most of those demons to rest and choose to live, instead, in the present moment rather than the dreary past.
I'm almost ready to have a boyfriend (don't faint).
There are a couple of headlines in today's celebu-news which caught my fancy. The first pertains to the movie-going experience in general. I love movies. Always have. I hid out a lot in movie theaters as a kid. So imagine my delight when I read this:
"Philly filmgoer gets firing squad for yakking during 'Benjamin Button'."
We easterners don't fuck around when it comes to our movies. BTW, I saw "Benjamin Button" last week and thoroughly liked it, even if it is just like "Forrest Gump" only with Brad Pitt instead of Tom Hanks. So go see it.
I also saw "Doubt" and, as you'd expect, when Meryl Streep and Philip Seymour Hoffman collide the sparks fairly fly off the screen. I was SPELLBOUND.
Now, in recovery news, there's this hi-larious item regarding "Choices" the upscale, pricey, Malibu Rehab for folks who like to recover AND go clubbing (it's ads state that they do NOT believe in the 'disease concept' of addiction, nor do they preach 12-Step recovery). I'm sure it works for somebody, but it sure wouldn't have worked for me.
Times are hard and they're trying to drum up business by luring in D-list celebutards to tout the place. Read about it here.
If I don't get around to posting again before Thursday, I want all (2) of you to have a safe, sane and sober New Year's and remember, if you insist on getting drunk, for God's sake have the common sense to stay home to do it.
Thursday, December 18, 2008
Obama Responds To Rick Warren Flap
Barack Obama was questioned about his selection of Rick Warren during a televised press conference this morning. His response:
I am a fierce advocate for equality for gay and -- well, let me start by talking about my own views. I think it is no secret that I am a fierce advocate for equality for gay and lesbian Americans. It is something I have been consistent on and something I intend to continue to be consistent on during my presidency. What I've also said is that it is important for America to come together even though we may have disagreements on certain social issues. And I would note that a couple of years ago I was invited to Rick Warren's church to speak, despite his awareness that I held views entirely contrary to his when it came to gay and lesbian rights, when it came to issues like abortion. Nevertheless, I had an opportunity to speak, and that dialogue, I think, is a part of what my campaign's been all about, that we're never going to agree on every single issue. What we have to do is create an atmosphere where we can disagree without being disagreeable, and then focus on those things that we hold in common as Americans. So Rick Warren has been invited to speak, Dr. Joseph Lowery -- who has deeply contrasting views to Rick Warren about a whole host of issues -- is also speaking.
John Aravosis at AmericaBlog reacts:
Great, then where are the racists, Mr. Obama? We don't see you embracing too many of them in the name of learning to agree to disagree. Or does your desire to create a new "atmosphere," and reach out to our enemies, stop when it's your own people, your own children, you'd be betraying? Funny how you only reach across the aisle when it's someone else's family, gay families in particular, getting the shaft.
And this is from yours truly, JoyZeeBoy:
In other words, how many more times do we have to get beaten up in order to be allowed to sit at the table? What is the political calculus here? Do we need to put in a hundred or two hundred or three hundred years of being "less than" and "left behind", like a certain other minority did, before we finally are allowed to have our piece of the pie?
I'm just curious, as I lie here beneath this bus, wondering how much longer I have to put up with being somebody's fucking "issue" rather than being treated like the human being I am.
Tuesday, December 16, 2008
As anyone over the age of, oh, say, reason knows, Detroit saw (or should've seen) the handwriting on the wall during the Arab Oil Embargo of 1973.
And it did abso-fucking-lutley nothing about it.
Eventually that particular oil crisis subsided, OPEC was created, the cartel started fixing prices and we became little more than Harem girls to a bunch of Middle East potentates.
All thanks to Detroit.
Now, of course, the Pep Boys have come, hat in hand and blaming the unions for all their problems, before Congress, begging for $$$$ to help the cash-strapped automakers "get through" this "difficult time."
As others have noted, nobody helped the autoworkers in Indiana and Michigan and elsewhere when the Pep Boys started shipping all the manufacturing jobs overseas, not merely to save money in manufacturing but, rather, to MAXIMIZE PROFITS FOR THE AUTO COMPANY SHAREHOLDERS which, incidently, included most of the senior management of the companies.
As a recovered alcoholic, I'm here to tell you that until somebody hits "bottom" they have absolutely zero impetus to change.
And if there's one thing I've learned in 12-Step recovery, it's this:
"If you keep on doing what you did, you will keep on getting what you got."
So the Pep Boys can bitch and whine and carry on and get out their blamethrowers and try to pin the blame on the labor donkey all they want, the fact is that the TOP of the industry is rotten to the core and has been ever since the end of World War II.
This is what unrestrained, ungoverned Capitalism looks like. It looks like greed run amok. It looks like "get the government off our backs and let the markets take care of the problems."
It looks like a bunch of empty suits begging the American public for more drug money, so it can keep on doing exactly what it always did, making shoddy merchandise and then guilt-tripping the public into buying it.
It looks like shit. It smells like shit. It is shit.
Monday, December 15, 2008
Hey! Remember when "viscious queen" meant some limp-wristed drag queen who'd scratch your eyes out? Bitch!
But to hear the latest crap out of the RRR, you'd think we've been living in gyms for the last 30 years (we have) and pumping ourselves up (we did) and taking self-defense lessons and are now:
making the world unsafe for God-fearing folk such as they. I also remember a time when, with the swing of a baseball bat, or a well-timed public raid on a bar or a bathhouse, they could count on us to slink back into our shame-filled closets, where we belonged.
Well, they can't count on that anymore. We lost that shame. It turned out that the shame wasn't ours to begin with, it was THEIR shame which they foisted off on us. We had nothing to be ashamed of. Never did.
And with the shame, went the guilt. And with the guilt went any impetus for us to care what they think. We are now beyond their control.
And they know it. And they are starting to get scared. And they should.
Friday, December 12, 2008
His guest, Mike Huckabee. And before I go any further, let me tell you right now that I have been told, point blank, by somebody from Arkansas who knows him well, that Mike Huckabee is, quote, "a fraud." Caveat emptor: My source is a rabid Democrat.
Here's the clip on gay marriage. Jon is wonderful. Huckabee sticks to the talking points.
Here's the line that bears repeating:
“It’s a travesty that it’s forced … that someone who is gay has to ‘make their case’…”
I have always felt as though I had to defend that which I am. And how ridiculous is that?
And let's not forget:
“Religion is far more of a choice than homosexuality..”
to which I always add, "Choice? I had a choice? To what? Admit it?"
Be afraid Huckabee. Be very, very afraid.
Thursday, December 11, 2008
No, not just winter. I was used to winters, fairly harsh mid-Atlantic winters, with howling gales and blinding blizzards. But in Seattle, although there was no snow, there was a total dearth of sunshine. And although it wasn't "freezing", it was damned cold. And damned damp. The sheets were always cold and damp. So were the bath towels. From late September of 1976 until, so it seemed, the following May, I swear we had a total of about 20 minutes of sunshine and I started to mildew.
From May to September, of course, the sun never bothered to set. It turns out that if Seattle were on the east coast it would be somewhere along the same latitude as, oh, say, Newfoundland, or St. Petersburg or someplace like that.
After two winters out there I ran, screaming, back into the warm, heaving bosom of the east coast, New York City in particular, where I lived, miserably, for the next 20 years. But that had nothing to do with the weather. Before the emails start, I have been back to Seattle numerous times over the years, and it was never as awful as I remember those two winters being. In fact, it's been downright gorgeous, even in the dead of winter. Go figure. Probably due to Global Warming or something.
I bring this up because today's weather in New York is eerily reminiscent of the weather during my two winters in Seattle, i.e., dark, cold, damp and just plain shitty.
But at least it ain't snowing.
For that you'll have to visit New Orleans.
Wednesday, December 10, 2008
The weight started falling off my face and back first. The gut was the last to go. It happened so quickly that my center of sitting gravity shifted and what had been a nicely padded portion of my nether regions was suddenly being rubbed raw by my skivvies as I sat, day after day, once I'd returned to work.
I tried creams.
I tried salves.
I tried Gold Bond powders of various compositions.
Nothing worked. And it hurt like hell to commute for an hour each way every day on seats covered in ancient upholstery most likely made from horse hair. It hurt to sit for any period of time.
Finally, I saw a dermotologist. He instantly knew what the problem was, prescribed some steroidal crap for it and told me to only use it for 2 weeks and, after that, the coup de grace,
to slather on a healthy serving of plain, unadulterated, unfumed, petrolatum every morning after I bathed.
And so I did.
Ahhhhh. What a relief.
I've oft heard it said, from childhood on, that as the years pass we become more and more childlike until, at the end, we're as helpless as newborns.
And now I know why. Now if someone would only come and change my diddie.
Friday, December 05, 2008
I think we all know who I'm talking about here.
There's a full page ad in today's NYTimes (click on image to embiggen it):
This ad does just that. You see, for over a 1,000 years certain groups of religious believers have bashed queers, burnt us at the stake, slammed us into prisons and iron maidens, tortured us on the rack, ran us out of town, shoved red-hot pokers up our asses and, when no one was looking, kidnapped young boys into indentured servitude, cut their balls off so they wouldn't lose their lovely soprano voices and, when no one was looking (i.e. most of the time) buggered the crap out of the adorable little cherubs until they were finally ready for the priesthood.
And nobody said a thing about it until this past century. Really, not until the last 50 years or so.
Now, the tables are turning and all of a sudden the bashers are fearful of being bashed. The bashers are typical schoolyard bullies, terrorizing anyone who doesn't stand up to them, running away in fear the minute somebody socks them in the nose and screaming bloody murder to the powers that be for protection from the victim.
It's always about blaming the victim. Hitler blamed the victims. Kristianity has always blamed it's victims ("If only Galileo would swallow his pride and deny the scientific evidence...").
And victims co-dependently go along with it by doing nothing. More people should turn around and sock the bullies in the noses. Literally. Figuratively. Immediately. Put up with no shit from anybody. Gay people are just as entitled to life, liberty and the pursuit of the American Dream, in full equality, as anyone else is.
And as MY God is MY witness, I will never again play dead for the heterosexist patriarchy which is about to find it's world turned upside down and it's worst nightmares coming true.
Monday, December 01, 2008
I have a sneaking suspicion that if Harvey Milk were still alive, he'd be at the forefront of the war against AIDS.
The first person I knew who died of this disease was an architect friend of mine named John. John was a quiet, tall redhead. Sweet as they come. And then, one day, he was gone. It all seemed to happen so quickly.
He was the tip of the iceberg. In quick succession a number of friends started becoming ill with exotic illnesses, some of which we'd never even heard of. Thrush. Kaposi's Sarcoma. And the ever present (and always fatal), pneumonia.
When our next door neighbor, Lee, passed away my ex and I both started getting nervous. My ex had had a brief flingette with Lee just before we met. And in those days, nobody knew anything about the incubation period for the "gay disease."
But the wolf stayed away from our door. In time the medicines got better. "Cocktails" started coming along and people who, only a decade before, would've surely died, started living longer and longer.
Today I know some people who've been living with HIV for over two decades. But there is still no cure. Maybe there'll never be a cure. But more needs to be done.
I hope everyone out there will, at the very least, stop today at some point and maybe think about someone they knew who died from AIDS, or maybe someone they know who is living with HIV. Or, of the millions and millions of people in other parts of the world who aren't nearly rich enough to afford the treatments currently available, or whose national governments think that they are merely getting what they deserved.
There is no more imperious urge in human beings, after the need for food and shelter, than for sexual companionship. Not one single human being who died of AIDS "deserved" to die from it. That's just plain bullshit to think that they did. People cannot be categorized as "innocent victims" or "deserving victims." Nobody deserved this. Nobody did anything to deserve this.
And it is not some sort of divine retribution any more than the bubonic plague was divine retribution on Europe for it's medieval sinfulness.
Stop. Think. Act.
Lives depend on it.
Here are some scheduled events for New York City today:
CANDLE LIGHT VIGIL begins at 6PM
Gay Men's Health Crisis - Tisch Building Lobby
119 West 24th St. (btwn 6th/7th Ave.)
CANDLE LIGHT PROCESSION to Judson Memorial Church:
55 Washington Square South (at Thompson St.)
Time of Reflection to those we have lost to AIDS:
Begins at 6:30PM (for those not at Candlelight Vigil)
World AIDS Day Program:
Begins at 7PM
And here's the official FaceBook page.