kitchen table

peace is the new satan
November 27, 2006, 11:04 pm
Filed under: America, conservative craziness


Apparently, some subdivisions consider the above image to be a “symbol of Satan.”


christmas gift
November 27, 2006, 2:06 pm
Filed under: Uncategorized

I wish I had a coffee fairy who would magically refill my mug with a French-press of steaming hot coffee the moment I most needed it. Cream & sugar would be nice too.

the canadian side
November 26, 2006, 10:16 pm
Filed under: funny fun fun, travel


More photos from the weekend here.

billy boy, billy boy
November 21, 2006, 4:38 pm
Filed under: Buffalo, Literature

Originally uploaded by I Sing

Meant to write about this over the weekend. Boyfriend and I went to see poet Billy Collins read on Friday night at UB. It didn’t take much convincing but we both acknowledged that Mike was hesitant to jump for joy. He wanted to go because I was excited but otherwise, I believe he felt indifferent at best.

He majored in business and finance. I majored in English.

And it’s not that a business major–and now, a law student–wouldn’t find joy in literature, but I know from past conversations that poetry has intimidated Mike. He feels about as connected to it as he does Saturn: it’s out there, it’s untouchable, it doesn’t really matter. What’s more, can anybody really blame him? With the exception of four or five poets, I feel fairly distant from the craft and art of poetry myself. In fact, I often feel like a fraud for not “getting” the Great Poems of All Time. Or for just not being interested.

They’re out there, they’re untouchable, they don’t really matter.

But then we saw Billy Collins on Friday night and we learned, for what felt to me like the first time for both of us, that it is touchable and it does matter. It’s also fuckin’ funny.

Before Collins went on stage, award-winning poet Carl Dennis gave the introduction and I grabbed Mike’s arm with one hand and gripped my seat with the other, fearing we’d both jump ship. Dennis’ speech was well-intentioned–probably even brilliant–but also excruiating and the epitome of a stereotypical poetry reading: white, male scholar droning into his sweater vest about the truths and mysteries of humanity. Blah.

Billy saved the day though and from the moment he stepped up to the podium, the mood in the auditorium was light and open. The very first poem he read, the name I cannot remember, made Mike laugh. And so did the second, the third. The fourth. He read from past works as well as new poems. I turned to Mike many times throughout the night, so delighted to see him smile–he was enjoying a poetry reading! When I wasn’t looking towards the stage or to my side, I was scrawling ideas for poems in my notebook. The kind of inspiration that comes from hearing other people read, by being reminded of how the craft works–from the pinprick of an idea to the excessive sweating of its birth to the polished neatness of its completion, the clean up, the end.

As we were driving home Mike asked me if I had any of his books so we could read them that night, in bed. When I finally got my copy of Sailling Alone Around the Room into his hands he read it like he was hungry. I told him about Billy Collins’ project, Poetry 180, and his other, numerous attempts at making poetry accessible. We both agreed that Mr. Collins was successful within our small world and reread our favorites of the evening, “Forgetfulness,” “Snow Day,” and, of course, “The Trouble with Poetry.”

P.S. Billy Collins is totally Gene Wilder as Willy Wonka.

cube be damned
November 20, 2006, 2:16 pm
Filed under: Feminism

Her book doesn’t come out until February but Michelle Goodman’s blog, Anti 9-to-5, is up and running–a good taste of what’s to come.

I love my dad, but…
November 9, 2006, 2:07 pm
Filed under: conservative craziness, Uncategorized

Via Feministing.

ted haggard: hyprocrite and victim?
November 9, 2006, 12:17 pm
Filed under: America, conservative craziness, Uncategorized

I’m about a week or so late on this one, but I want to comment about Ted Haggard. You know, this guy.

One thing that’s missing so far from the discussion I’ve read and heard is sadness. There’s been anger. And shock. And even, as Laura points out, hypocritical snickering at hypocrisy. But there doesn’t seem to be a whole lot of sadness and what I mean by that is this: our heterosexist, patriarchal culture has created an atmosphere in which homosexuality is so deviant that gay (or bisexual) men like Haggard dedicate their lives to a mission of self-hatred.

That’s sad, not funny.

I’ll admit to some vindictive giggles when I first found out, especially when he admitted buying crystal meth but not using it and getting a massage from a male prostitute but not sleeping with him. Now, however, I’m ashamed of myself for laughing at a man who is clearly struggling. And while yes, a lot of Haggard’s past statements about the queer community anger me, I also recognize that we, as a society, need to take some collective responsibility.

Haggard’s hypocrisy didn’t grow out of nothing. It came from a culture of gay jokes, of narrow definitions of “real men,” of a denial of basic rights to those who identify as gay or lesbian, bisexual or transgendered. It came from the same culture that claims it is trying to protect the sanctity of an institution that the ends in divorce over 50% of the time. It came from a culture where the physical expression of love between two men or two women was, for years, illegal.

No wonder Haggard hates himself. From the moment he and other gay Americans could talk, they’ve been silenced.