I’m Cold

Had a visit from Duncan this weekend, which is always a happy thing. We had dinner at the cafeteria, and breakfast at the Cloverdale, and we even managed to do a quickie tour of Greensboro before coming home and paying tribute to Molly Ivins by watching a show she recorded for the late great BayTV in San Francisco several years ago. I miss Molly.

Speaking of the City of Doom, Mark is back there now. I got to experience the coldest low of the year firsthand as I drove him to the airport at 4:30 this morning.

Now I’m very alone and very cold, but at least the satellite and the video camera are both working again. And I’ve got lots of cheap eggs from the brand new Food Lion.

Pretty exciting stuff, huh?

English for the England. Wait…

The big controversy in Charlotte this week is about the appropriateness of saying the Pledge of Allegiance in Spanish. Of course, you’d think the flag-waving nationalistic types would be ecstatic that people want to recite the stupid pledge at all, but they’re not.

I guess it’s all about empty symbolic gestures, like the insistence that one swear oaths in court (or oaths of office) with a hand on the Christian Bible. Why on earth would anyone want me to swear on a book that means about as much to be as “Aesop’s Fables” or “Tom Sawyer”? Apparently, conservatives reactionaries prefer a memorized, insincere expression of loyalty and truth to an honest and uncoerced one.

My suggestion: all official business in the United States must be conducted using Olde English, since that’s the language God spoke when he and King James first wrote the Bible back in 1611. Thus, it’s God’s “official language” and therefore it should be ours.

This is, after all, an English-speaking, Christian nation, just like it says in the Constitution, right? Oh come on. You know it’s in there somewhere. Maybe toward the back…

Coming Home, Sort Of

Despite what Thomas Wolfe said, I guess you can go home again. Sort of. It’s just that everything looks much different.

I spent tonight in the same building where I spent much of 1982 through 1984, in the student union at UNCG. I was attending an information session for prospective graduate students, since I’m planning to get my MLIS. (And yes, that’s an announcement of sorts.) But there’s no resemblance whatsoever between the Elliott Center of my misspent youth and today’s version.

To start with, the building is about twice as big. It now has a food court and a Barnes & Noble, not to mention an entirely new auditorium. If that weren’t enough, though, they’ve also gutted the old part of the building. Nothing I remember is there anymore. No more radio station hallway where we used to play record frisbee with Survivor albums, no more Student Government office, no more lower level men’s room where I used to, ummm, never mind…

It’s disorienting as hell to be in a building where you’ve spent literally thousands of hours and not to be able to find your way around.

I’ll Do You

As I sit here digitizing a Wire Train album from 1984, I keep asking myself the very same question I used to ask over and over again 23 years ago while spending late nights in the control room at WUAG:

Just what the fuck does “I could make a horse’s head of all your friends” mean?

The Therapeutic Benefits of Naked Photography

Apologies if this is way too much information, but I’ve discovered that having naked pictures of oneself over the course of several years can be a very valuable and reassuring reference when one is wondering if a certain swelling is (a) just two lumps of fat that have always been there or (b) something more sinister.

Yes, it’s just fat. And yes, it’s pretty much always been there, although it’s expanded a bit with my waistline over the past fifteen years. And yes, it’s little paranoid moments like these that are teaching me to love my fat. I will not, however, use that as an excuse to order extra gravy when my parents come over to take me out to dinner tonight.

Or maybe I will…

Hypocritical Homos?

Here in the south, the prevailing sentiment on undocumented immigrants (or at least the stated one) seems to be that “I don’t mind ‘the Mexicans’ being here. What I mind is the fact that they’re here illegally.” The implication, of course, is that the only justification for discriminating against “the Mexicans” is the fact that they’re breaking the law by being here.

As generally unpleasant and hard to swallow as that logic may be, it seems particularly hypocritical when it’s uttered by someone who professes to have fought for equal rights for homosexuals. Until a few years ago, homosexual activity was illegal in almost every state in the union. The mere fact that same-sex contact was illegal was used by landlords, employers, government agencies, and other institutions as justification for whatever discrimination they deemed appropriate.

You’d think anyone who had been a member of a group that had been irrationally targeted using “illegal behavior” as a justification — homosexuals, members of interracial couples, etc. — would know better, or that he might at least be able to see some parallels here. But you’d be surprised by how often you’d be wrong about that.

Am I suggesting that everyone who breaks any law should be exempt from any consequences? No. I am, however, suggesting that our immigration laws probably need significant fine-tuning, just as our sodomy laws did several years ago. I’m also suggesting that anyone who has been discriminated against merely for breaking an unjust law might want to consider very carefully how he treats others who are in a similar predicament.

This presumes, of course, that “breaking the law” really is the only issue. And you know as well as I do that, sadly, it very often is not.

With This Ring

Three years ago today, he and I were a part of the most romantic act of civil disobedience ever:

You know what? I love him even more now than I did then. Contrary to popular belief, I wasn’t just clutching onto him to stay warm that morning after spending the whole night outside in the cold rain.

The Ghost of February Past

I haven’t done one of these in a while. It’s mid-February through the years:

There were a lot of things going on in February in the earlier years too, but for some reason I don’t feel like including them.

Weird LiveJournal Links

I don’t understand. I looked at my stats tonight and I have all these referrals from Live Journal sites belonging to people I don’t know. When I go to check out the sites in question, I don’t see any links to me. They all seem legitimate, so I don’t think it’s referrer spam. I just don’t get it.

Unrelated: has anyone used Super Duper, the semi-shareware backup utility? Any opinions?

A Ten-year Love Affair

When we entered into the relationship, I knew I wasn’t the first. And there have been some tense moments over the years, mostly when we were in San Francisco or (as is so often the case) when we travelled together. A lot of effort has to go into a healthy relationship, and I’ve neglected things from time to time. Both of us have our faults and our weaknesses, and we’ve both been through a lot.

But I wouldn’t trade these past ten years for anything.