Wednesday, November 30, 2005

Being An Autodidact

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The first time I was called an autodidact, I was insulted.

Then I looked the word up, as any self-respecting autodidact does. And realized the person calling me that, nailed me.

This link (*warning - the link contains all sorts of outlandish moronic assumptions) should explain why I, the autodidact of my family, chose to leave the church and strike out on my own.

I remember being asked once in church, describe God. So I replied, "He's God." To me, the idea of defining the unknowable, the all-powerful, the all-seeing, was rather presumptious of humans. Well, the collective gasp that went through the church as they took turns in telling me, God is good, God is merciful, etc ad nauseum showed me exactly how puny their faith actually was. Why the hell would you want to put God in a box?

Science lets us know that we are part of a whole, not that we are above the whole. Religion on the other hand, tells us we are above the whole. Now that's audacity.

 
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Doing What the President Does

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"By not chewing my food enough and swallowing quickly, I will teach those calories that they cannot remain in my body and create fat." - Sep. 12th, 2001

"To teach those calories that they cannot remain in my body and create fat, I will vow that I won't chew my food enough and I will swallow quickly." - June, 2002

"A new policy is set here. We have to teach calories that to stay in the body to create fat, they are terrorists! Therefore, I vow to stay the course and swallow quickly, not chewing enough." - July. 2003

"Of course we are winning the war against calories. We have those calories scared now because we keep swallowing quickly. We have them on the run now." - Mar. 2004

"The report that there has been substantial weight gain since we started swallowing faster has been distributed by partisan operators. In fact, we are winning the war against those dastardly calories also known as terrorist cells. By staying the course and swallowing quickly, we WILL defeat calories. We are in fact, bringing the war to them." - Jan. 2005

"We are setting a new policy today. Once the body can stop processing calories, we with start chewing properly. To take our time swallowing now, would dishonor those taste buds that have fallen in the line of duty. Our new policy will allow the body time to stop processing calories. We will continue to stay the course, which is of course, our new policy." - Nov. 2005

See? I too can be the worst president ever.

 
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Tuesday, November 29, 2005

Rockin' & Rollin' on the Streets

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For our birthdays, my "brother" Shep-dawg and his other got us a Segway tour around San Francisco. We got to tool around on these newfangled vehicles and boy was it fun. On the tour with us, was a wide range of ages from people in their 50's down to our friend Air-bear who is 13 going on 30.

We got looks, we got comments, we got style! It was a lot of fun motoring on these, but the dang thing is, there is NO way you can override the speed limiter. Every time I tried to catch up to Bratworse, the dang segway would gyro itself upright to keep from speeding.

If you all can, get on one of these. Maybe if enough people buy it, the cost'll come down and I can afford one! Yeah I know, keep dreaming.

 
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Rent Review

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About 5 weeks ago, we saw the first commercials for 'Rent' the movie and immediately I called up my friend, Abey-Baby to go see it.

You have to understand, Abey-Baby and I are HUGE Rent fans, us having seen the theatre production three times in San Francisco and him seeing it two or three more times on Broadway. Yes, as I mentioned before, I'm a fag hag in drag and I love Broadway musicals. And Abey-Baby is the "fag" I go see plays with. So I contacted him and his husband and made a date for the day after thanksgiving.

The thing you have to understand about seeing theatre productions instead of movies is, all your memories come from the soundtrack and when you have a cast like Rent's, they're all over the stage and therefore, sometimes you have no idea who is singing what.

To me, that was the biggest thing about the movie. It clarified for me, especially at the beginning, who was singing what.

*SPOILERS*

At last count, Abey-Baby and I came up with 3 songs that was dropped from the movie. One happened to be one of my favorites, the Christmas Drug song is what I call it. Another was the fight between Roger and Mark towards the end. Off hand, I can't remember what the third song was, but OH! I remember now. It was the "hot hot, sex sex" song, which was okay cause I realized that in the play, it was one of those filler songs so the set/cast can change.

Oh, and don't believe the reviews that tell you over 30 minutes of dialogue was added. Those people apparently never paid attention to the play. In the play, the dialogue was sung. In the movie, most of the spoken dialogue was sung during the play. There IS however, one scene that was added and I agree with the director that it helped place the song in context... and that's the lesbian commitment ceremony. (THAT dialogue was indeed added). In the play, the song just sort of was inserted in the middle of a bunch of sets.

Actors:
I HEARTILY approve of Taye Diggs as Benny. In all three productions I saw, I HATED Benny. Benny had no redeeming qualities whatsoever, yet Taye Diggs managed to make Benny likable, especially in the very first scene he was in . Finally, I could see how Benny could live in that loft, and then drive a range rover.

Jesse L. Martin - one of three guys I would actually consider sleeping with. Consider! Not actually do it. Man, he was JUST great as Tom Collins. My two favorite scenes are with him and Angel.

Wilson Jermaine Heredia - The original Angel! I got to see Wilson twice in San Francisco and to me, there is no other Angel. The second I saw him/her on the screen, my eyes welled up with tears.

Tracie Thomas - Okay, I just love Joann. During the song "Take Me for Who I Am," I kept thinking, oh yeah, I'll take you, just sing to me.

What impressed me about the movie:
Well, actually, this is more a testament to Jonathan Larson's ability to put natural sounding dialogue into song. Earlier, I talked about how the so-called added dialogue was in reality, lyrics that were said instead of sung. Well, what totally impressed me was how well the dialogue worked without rhythm behind it, though in my head, I was totally singing the dialogue.

Another thing that impressed me how well the visual juxtaposition between scenes in New York and scenes in Sante Fe worked. But apparently it was only me. Bratworse never noticed how drab and urbane Sante Fe looked visually (with all the pasty white fat tourists in the background) as opposed to the vibrancy and liveliness of multi-cultural New York.

What I was disappointed in:
One of my all-time favorite songs in the play was "Light My Candle." In the play, there was a bit of innocent playfulness in the singing of the song. In the movie, the song turned into pure seduction. I understand the reason behind the change - it's more in character for Roger not to be portrayed as innocent or playful. I got to see the original Mimi and to me, she encapsulated the character. Rosario Dawson is a tad too reminiscent of Irene Cara for me, and though she did a MUCH better job than the third Mimi I saw on stage (who had turned the char. into an unconvincing show girl like person - when she tapped her arm to find a vein, it was like ho-hum, tap tap tap which made me laugh out loud in the theatre), she wasn't Mimi.

The other production I was disappointed in was, "Today for you, Tomorrow for me." Angel in the production, had very little stage space to work with, and it just seemed so much more exciting, real, in the moment. The movie version seemed, well, staged.

Overall, I liked the movie version, but I think I will continue to listen to the original broadway soundtrack. After all, I still get Taye Diggs, Jesse L. Martin and Wilson Jermaine Heredia singing on there.

Oh, as for Mark Cohen, you know, for a jewish boy from Scarsdale, he looks awfully waspy.

And Maureen? I just loved the 2nd Maureen I got to see on stage. This one was just.... too in your face.

 
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Saturday, November 19, 2005

Murtha's Speech

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I just watched these clips of Murtha's speech on Daily Dissent. I am moved to tears. Cong. Murtha understand the meaning of being a public servant whereas the Bush Administration seems to think that being elected means becoming royalty. (Can you picture Cong. Murtha going shoes shopping or staying on vacation during Katrina?)

Watch it and experience hope grow once again within you. Listening to him makes me proud to be an American. Wow, I never thought I'd utter those words again.

 
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Monday, November 14, 2005

When Stores Go Bad

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I think Hindus need to go work for Target's food department next. I mean, why stop at the pharmacy department? (I can so see it - "No ma'am, you can't buy that cause it's my grand-uncle Ali who came back to life as a cow and now is beef jerky.")

Long story short: woman got assaulted, went in to Target for the next day pill aka Plan B. Pharmacist says, sorry 'gainst my beliefs and didn't issue drug. Now, boycott is being called.

Look, I don't like this any more than you. I LOVE Target stores, or the way we call it, "Tar-jay." You think I like them being jerks? Anyway, read this and get a fuller story, plus emails back and forth between Target, Planned Parenthood and another person.

On the one hand, it's admirable that Target plans on standing behind this one pharmacist. But this means, shopping only at Longs Drugs for me for the foreseeable future. Oh, Target? My last three trips to Target resulted in $200+ purchases each time. So, enjoy the many lawsuits and loss of business. When you come to your senses again, I'll come back then.

 
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Thursday, November 10, 2005

Unduly Restrictive

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BWAHAHAHAHA... that's a good one.
Alito, trying to quell conflict-of-interest issues raised by liberal opponents, said he had been "unduly restrictive" in promising in 1990 to recuse himself in cases involving Vanguard Group Inc. and Smith Barney Inc.
*wipes her eyes*

Okay, let's run this one by the IRS test:

Me: Sir, you know when I said I'd pay last year's taxes? Well, it turns out that I was unduly restrictive towards myself when I said so.

Riiight. So far, Alito doesn't seem to pass the smell test.

 
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Political Compass

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I took the Political Compass test and this is my score: Your political compass
Economic Left/Right: -5.13
Social Libertarian/Authoritarian: -6.05

That means, I'm along the lines of Ghandi or Nelson Mandela. I'm in great company! *beams*

 
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Tuesday, November 08, 2005

Weirdness in Trinity County

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Here's a screenshot of the results per county from California's own Secretary of State's website. Take a good look at Trinity County.


Wonder why they skipped counting Proposition 75? Or could it be that the whole county collectively decided to skip voting on that proposition?

[Update] The website now shows Trinity at 100% results in and Proposition 75 now has a count. Glitch? The screen shot was of the results from 8:20 pm. The update is from their 8:51 pm screen.

 
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Election Day!

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So, have you voted today? Remember, here in California, pretty much vote no on everything. Let's teach those Republicans and Arnold that teachers, firefighters, police and nurses DO NOT qualify as special interests groups. The one thing all four groups have in common is that they are there for the general public.

Wish we could say that about the politicians, but somehow public servant somehow became public lord. We need to remind them that they work for us.

 
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Monday, November 07, 2005

Spontaneity - NOT!

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ARGH! Bratworse just called up and said, "Guess what, we're going to the Margaret Cho show on Wednesday."

I said, "We are?"

Now, if she had called up and said, "Hey, I know you're in the middle of Nanowrimo, but do you think if you wrote more today and tomorrow, and on Thursday, we'd be okay to go to Margaret Cho on Wednesday? Cause I really want you with me," I wouldn't feel like my needs weren't being considered.

Ugh I hate this. Now I feel bad cause I told her no. I hate saying no to her, especially when she's excited about things like that. There is absolutely NO reason in the world she shouldn't go. Why do I have to go? The month of November is a shut in month for me. ARGH!

I HAVE to break her of the habit of making declarations like that. There is NO faster way to get me to say no, then to assume I'm going to be doing something, no ifs ands buts about it.

grrrrr

 
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Sunday, November 06, 2005

Ugh. Wrestling with the Muse

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I am 6,000 words behind schedule and what am I doing instead of writing? I'm watching the Raiders against the Kansas City Chiefs.

My "n" key is being stuck! ARGHHHHHHHHHHHHHH!

I am so hating life right now and I KNOW it's cause my PMS is hitting hard as well.

I just popped off the "n" key and made Bratworse come over to help out. Between the two of us, we managed to extract a sliver of sunflower seed shell out from under the key. Ah, the perils of using sunflower seeds as a substitute against smoking.

Now, the "n" is working perfectly. THANK YOU BRATWORSE! MMMMM-WAH! I love you!

 
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Thursday, November 03, 2005

Giving Credit (or rather Non-Credit) Where It's Due

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I know I bitch about Howie Kurtz. There ARE times when his writing just seems so... one-sidedly snide. (yeah, I know the word one-sidedly doesn't exist. But technically, neither does n00b)

However, today I must give credit where it's due... to Howard Kurtz for NOT giving credit where it's due.

In talking about a WH administrator who is criticizing the media, Kurtz says:
Um, a special prosecutor brings an indictment against the vice president's top aide and that's not a big story? Two thousand Americans die in Iraq and that's not a story? And the Miers nomination, of course, was done in by the conservative punditocracy. This doesn't strike me as a serious critique that an administration official would put his name to. Oh right, he didn't.

Kudos, Mr. Kurtz.

 
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Wednesday, November 02, 2005

Overheard in the Elevator of the Cruise Ship

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"We're from Waco, Texas, y'know, jes' a few miles on down the road from the President?"

Stranger pipes up.

"Whose president? Ain't my president!"

If only that were true.

 
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Tuesday, November 01, 2005

It's Started!

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And we're off!

My new novel, (semi-autobiographical) An Act of Balance, can be found here. I tend to write as I post. So everything you see there hasn't been edited, and is definitely in progress. Have I thrown up enough disclaimers yet?

Wish me luck. 50,000 words in 30 days. I think I'm up to 800 so far.

[Update] Chapter 1, the Shanghai Years is done. 1,399 words. Enjoy and feel free to critique.

[update 2] Had to restart. I hated the voice (i had none); I hated the tone (there was none) and it was just all round bad. So I restarted at a different time, with a different voice. Here's the prologue.

 
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