Tuesday, July 31, 2007

living in the shadow

Twenty years ago this week I made a mistake. I am still paying for it.

As with all mistakes, the aftermath is mixed. Certainly some good has come of it. And good beyond the flippant, “even a blind squirrel finds a nut every once in a while.” But I wonder if the good could have been achieved without the mistake. The purest of conjecture. It is also clear that the very best of what came from that train wreck of which I am still entangled could not have happened but for the carnage.

Oh well.

I think Barry Bonds is refusing to hit the next couple of home runs on purpose, so that the putz Commissioner Bud Seling has to follow him around the country for a week or two.

That was my op-ed piece on the news. Hope you enjoyed it. Now back to our regularly scheduled programming, joined in progress.

Twenty years ago my father told me he had colon cancer. He’s been dead five or six years now. Twenty years ago I was just starting to think about law school. I’ve since practiced for a decade and moved into education. Twenty years ago was the relative fast pace of Northern Cal. Today, I sit in Bumfoq, Pennsylvania, writing to no one in cyberspace listening to my twin’s favorite, Billie Holiday.

Twenty years is a long time. I aged. I can’t tell if I hardened or am too jaded to discern. I still hold my optimism, but now I expect to be kicked and don’t get terribly upset when I do. My focus is rather narrow these days – give me enough money to pay my bills, land leave me alone. That’s not being cranky or anti-social. But I seek to engage society when I want to engage. I have grown weary of societal dictates.

Alright, enough cranky – although I am not cranky.

I recently discovered the music of Blind Willie Johnson. The first song I heard was, “Dark was the Night.” I thought of a New Orleans funeral procession. Remarkable song. I learned in the article (yes, that bastion of peerless-reviewed writings, WikiPedia) that the song was about Christ’s crucifixion.

Three of his songs are available on the Internet Archive (which, btw, has a lot of old blues free for the taking without having to worry about liberals asking for royalties).

Let’s roam the Internet Archive, shall we?

Today on Gender Talk (if today were February 12, 2001), “Zantui Rose has been a contributor to the trans community for 7 years as a writer, workshop facilitator, therapist and visionary. She co-mothered the Bodhi Tree House, a trans-sacred retreat space, and last year delivered the keynote address the Southern Comfort conference. She has been partnered with a transperson for 4 years, and speaks with us about transcending gender as a spiritual imperative, and about transcending the gender paradigm. She also talks about the various workshops and retreats that are conducted by she and her partner Holly Boswell, as well as Mrak Eden, in beautiful mountain settings of North Carolina. For more information about BodhiTree House retreats, email: BTH395@juno.com

“Ethan St. Pierre is a transgender man whose aunt, Debra Forte, was murdered for being a transperson. We met Ethan when he participated in the National Gender Lobby Days effort in Washington, DC. Ethan's partner, Karen Martin, is a transsexual woman and they have been in a committed relationship for a couple of years. Ethan talks about his relationship with Karen through his own change in identity and gender.”

You can’t make this stuff up. Ethan is a dude that was girl; he’s with Karen, who’s a girl that was a dude. Does that make them gay? Like some special classification – not bisexual, but like hetero-gay. I wonder if Ethan helps Karen with her make-up. Who has the prostrate?

Speaking of prostrates, I gotta get mine checked on Friday. I am whining big fucking time about it. If I’m going to stick something up my ass, it had better be connected to or somehow controlled by that one special loved one. A stranger just doesn’t do it for me. Medical exam or not. And they use so much of that goop that you fart it out later. I hate that.

Back to diversions. Let’s see, what else?

You gotta love this – the original 1928 Orson Welles War of the Worlds Broadcast. Runs about 51 minutes. Less than an hour to throw the country into a panic. Based on a book. People, get a grip.

Remember the old radio show, “The Shadow”? No, neither do I. That was years before me. But my dad used to do the laugh – something like, “The Shadow knows (insert dad laughing).” He seemed to enjoy doing it. I tried to look something other than impassive. Here are 98 episodes of The Shadow! “The Shadow knows! A-ha-ha (cough!) ha-ugg- (wheez!) ha-ha .. mmm.”

Not sure if these are good, but I presume they are. I used to love to listen to the suspense stories on the radio. WGBI in Scranton used to play them late at night when anyone who knew how to change records every three minutes was long gone to bed. This is a link to hundreds of these suspense stories.

Enough. I went back up and read about the prostrate intrusion. Can’t get past it. Gotta walk around.

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