lunes, octubre 31, 2005

Grand Total: 7

Seven little trick-or-treaters. All in the 6-10 year-old range, i'm guessing.

of course, at the end, i was handing out big handfuls of 3 musketeers bars, because nothing is sadder than leftover candy. fortunately, i'm not a big fan of 3 musketeers bars, so there's no shameful scarfing in my future.

now it's time to turn off the porch light and focus on tomorrow's class.

my kitchen is clean. my dough is on its second rising.

the kitties are back in the house. i wouldn't let them in while i was baking, because i knew they would want to tippy-toe across my breadboard. so they cried at the front door until the trick-or-treaters came, and then they ran away.

reading sherman alexie has had me thinking A LOT about growing up in northern new mexico. In fact, i know that several of my buddies had cameos in last night's dream. they looked like gulf war vets. first gulf war.

Trick or Treat?

Okay, I definitely hear the little voices out on the street. Let's see if they brave our house.

dinner and other mundane thoughts

I'm having trouble posting anything--even entries that I've already written, because it's so crazy to try jump back and forth from Normal Life to This Insane World We're Living in.

But now i'm just doing it. And I'm back-posting some journal entries from the last couple of days, even though they feel too frivolous and inane.

Tonight I kneaded my first loaf of bread in fifteen years. have i really been out that long? i think it's coming back to me, like the bicycle. if the pandemic comes, we'll have bread. we'll see if it's a hit at tonight's wine and cheese party.

Baking helps me deal with the loneliness when my baby is off working--it may in fact be the most appropriate solution! Now I have to clean up the kitchen, prep for class, and thus my evening is structured, rather than being a big wasteland of alone-time.

After serving L* much attitude over the the very idea that I not give out candy if home alone, i must admit I'm relieved that no trick-or-treating happened. I peeked out into the neighborhood at twilight and NOBODY had their porch lights on--not even the neighbors with scarecrows and stuff going on.

I made a salad with the last of the lettuce and gobbled up all those little grape-sized tomatoes. sweet bursts of sunshine. I'm still hungry, but I know that when the bread is done, I'll want to eat several slices so I'm saving room.

I also have to pick out a suit to wear to the arraignment tomorrow. I fear my passion for suits is some kind of internalized racism, like wearing a big sign around my neck saying, NO, REALLY: I'M A PROFESSOR.

But then that's what clothes are all about anyway, right? NO, REALLY: I'M A FEMME. NO, REALLY: I'M A QUEER.

Yesterday at the Dia de Los Muertos event on International Blvd., my baby bought me this fabulous RAZA hat. It's a black canvas cowboy-style hat, with a pink mariposa stitched on the front. by Anahuak designs.


The public arraignment is tomorrow at 9 a.m.
567 7th Street, Room #12, San Francisco.

So get your work done early and be there!

Magnets in My Ears

L*'s family had this taunt: "Curlers in your hair! Shame on you!"

It's pretty self-evident, i think, since it immediately brings to my mind don Alfonso's judgments on be-curlered women in fuzzy slippers at the grocery store, and warninga bout what would happen to me if i went that route.

So, anyway, I've noticed that if i spend too much time with audiobooks, there's this weird CHARGED feeling in my head and throat, like my blood is thrumming.

And just last night I realized that my headphones are magnetized. Are yours? can you touch the little suckers together or do they repel one another? Can these magnets in my ears be doing me some harm? Should I switch to the headphones with the least magnetic force?

SF State to Probe Arrest

Finally the Chronicle covers the story!

Independent Commission to investigate racial profiling

domingo, octubre 30, 2005

SFSU Professor Arrested, Jailed

The Oakland Tribune has picked up the story. Unlike the SF Chronicle.

sábado, octubre 29, 2005


You who have never been asked
for i.d.
for walking your own streets
your own workplace
your own democracy

you who sleep soundly
untroubled by dreams

of strip-searches
orange pajamas
twenty-four hour
threat and humiliation

you who've never had to prove
your right to be here
your right to be free

you are quick to urge restraint
on the part of those
who have been

Writer's Retreat Dream

I was at a writers retreat, only it was on a boat, and we were mostly wearing things like bikinis and sarongs. my body wasn't my body, but the body of some twenty-year-old lean model-type. There was never any actual writing at this retreat.

not a boat, a ship. but we boarded this other ship first, and then there were all these walkways to our ship, but they were very criss-crossy, so there would be these three bridges and they would say L3, L4, L5 (different levels) but you couldn't just tell by looking at them which one went up, which one went across, which one went down. and there would be little fare gates on them, where you had to have your ticket punched (like on BART)

There seemed to be a lot of field trips, to see monsters (sea monsters)

We were all suspected of some crime, and we were being weeded out, and yet we weren't sure if the ones "kicked out" were going free or going to jail. (were the rest of us the suspects, or cleared of suspicion?)

One of the team members was one of those young angular white men: had a very "military recruit" look, all cropped head and cheekbones. Brad? Buddy?

Stubby, the armadillo-porcupine--a member of our team--found his medication (injectible) missing (along with another team members's comb) and so left to go to someone else's cabin to see if it was there. Almost immediately that someone telephoned to say they had the other guy's comb, and so I'm assuming they also have stubby's medication. I tell them Stubby is on his way over. (Was stubby a character in Reservation Blues, or is that another fantasy?)

Things that may have provided the material for this dream: MLo's film-in-progress of lesbians of color escaping a fascist nudist colony; Robert Johnson's novel MIDDLE PASSAGE, set on a slave ship; the comadres' cruises; the approach of National Novel Writing Month (write a novel in november); three Sherman Alexie novels in a row.

viernes, octubre 28, 2005

Professor arrested

This consumes my thoughts:

Black Studies Professor Arrested
Arrest allegedly linked to racial profiling


I write letters calling for immediate and unconditional release
that all charges be dropped
that the patterns and records be fully investigated

this is not an amnesty international urgent action

this is where we live
and work
while crosses burn

The shadow of the Superdome stretches far

It is a shadow that cast light
It is a mirrored lens through which we see
the minority "rich" evacuated
the masses herded and abandoned
a city in crisis
a nation glued to the toob,
waiting for the raping and looting and gang anarchy

in hospitals
decisions were made
who should be saved

in bureacracies
decisions were made
who should be saved

the rest were left,
to feed off one another
like sharks

poor people came together
checked on their neighbors
organized rescue rafts
cooked big pots of stew
held body and soul together

poor people came together
"looted" food and water and maxi pads
brought them home to needy housefuls

poor people came together
marched to freedom
to be turned back at gunpoint
as suburban cops turned private security

none have been named heroes
(a sobriquet reserved for the youth we ship out
to be sent back in boxes,
absent cousins
of this same urban poor)

helicopter grabs, with much footage,
ended unmarked
in the shadow of the overpass
still no supplies
still no escape

now that busing has changed
the inner city demographic
will the diaspora
have right of return?

do the rest of us really believe
it could not happen here?

miércoles, octubre 26, 2005

Romanesco Broccoli

Too weird! Have you seen this stuff?

We got it in our vegetable basket this week. I mean it's beautful!

But, we don't like Broccoli**. or Cauliflower. And Romanesco is a cross between Broccoli and Cauliflower! and a mind-boggling one at that. Definitely looks like a sculpture!

We're good eggs, though, so we'll boldly go.

Last night: Salad with pears, parmesan, and pomegranate. Yummmmmm!

**Chinese broccoli is a whole 'nother story. I could eat Chinese broccoli twice a week!

Meme - Whatchu need?

Got this from Goddess. You do a google search of your name followed by "needs." (be warned, though, there's lots of nasties out there!)

1. Catriona needs to learn about reinforcing her models where they are a bit flimsy.
2. Whilst Kevin has few problems with his commitment, Catriona needs plenty of it to get her thorough the next stage of her journey
3. Baroness Catriona needs waterbearing bottles for May Faire.
4. She believes she needs to regain her honor, but what she really needs is to learn self-acceptance. Catriona is striking figure. She is six feet tall.
5. Catriona believes that we need a strong paradigm shift when it comes to our attitudes about sport and physical activity.
6. Catriona needs to be mindful of planning ahead to avoid any possible asthma flare up.
7. Catriona desperately needs Dominic to claim the child, so she agrees to a bargain.
8. Catriona has broken down her overall learning need into more detailed skills
9. Catriona is afloat on River Deben. She’s a lovely old boat but needs badly needs some attention.

martes, octubre 25, 2005

The Lone Ranger and Tonto Fistfight in Heaven

I'm on a Sherman Alexie roll right now. He's so funny. Not like comedy, although Thomas Builds-the-fire does say he's not a full-blood Indian: "I'm half magician on my mother's side and half clown on my father's". But in a "home truth" kind of way. So far, my favorite story is "a drug called tradition." But then I only got to page 94 reading on public transportation. Still, I guess you can tell a lot about a person by which story they choose.

(I can't believe the first thing I said about him is that he's funny. I hate it when they do that in a book review. Tell you how funny this book is, and then you read it and it's so tragic!)

So I finished Indian Killer on monday. I still keep thinking of it. The Fantasies. What L* would call the border fantasies, I think. Indian Killer and The Wind Done Gone are all swimming around in my head.

I'm now about halfway through Almanac of the Dead. How long has it been since I started that? Looks like I added it to my list four weeks ago. It's too big a book to put down for too long, because there are so many characters it takes a while to remember if these are "new" characters or if you already met them in another part of the novel. Each time I enter a new section, or Book, in the novel, I run up against a wave of resistance. Because the characters are never likable: I never cozy on up to the new characters. So it takes me a long time to be drawn into their stories.

Now with The Lone Ranger and Tonto Fistfight in Heaven (the whole book), I like Victor, I like most of the characters right away and care what happens to them. It's totally different from Indian Killer.

lunes, octubre 24, 2005


L* and I had a lovely evening on Saturday with EMc & J and company, and were totally smitten by Xuey, their tiny Chihuahua. Not only would she jump in my lap and lick my ears, but later in the evening, she made her appearance in a stunning SuperMan outfit, complete with cape. L* was won over by the idea of the little dogs being bred to keep you warm. Xuey has those ears like bat wings: I'll fly away!

Xuey was way cuter in her costume than this dog.

Wish we'd smuggled her home. Although the Nxi was very moody the next day, so she must have sensed our intentions.

(Buddy is also a very cool and mellow guy--I don't mean to damn him with faint praise!)

J's paintings really caught our attention and kept us thinking, as did his riveting stories.

I know we kept going on and on about the view in their apartment, but WOW! Lake merritt at night!

What a wonderful evening with wonderful new friends.

NaNoWRiMo (T-7 days and counting)

So, of the people I challenged, BendyPalm says yes, RaW says yes, JM believes I'm insane. I just got a message back from MachaFemme that i think is a no. My bad. I know they all have other work to do. I just want them to play with me.

Tia Tencha may also make an appearance in Agapantha's novel.
Unless I decide to follow Alexie down the Dark Path.

About mysteries

I'm reading Sherman Alexie's Indian Killer, very quickly. As quickly as I read Desert Blood, which is the book it makes me think of the most. Why is that? There aren't very many similarities. Alexie's novel isn't even a "detective" novel. I'm wondering if it's a roman a clef, and I'm trying to figure out the clef.

domingo, octubre 23, 2005

Writing her way out of a hurricane

BendyPalm has replied to my invitation to write a novel in november. She's down for it. Turns out she's got a novel in the works already. I'm not surprised by that part, because I know she has it in her.

But in the meantime, she has to back up all her data before Wilma strikes. And she and her partner and their dogs and other members of the menagerie are in a boarded up house awaiting Wilma.

sábado, octubre 22, 2005

The Wind Done Gone (after the fact)

Remember when I said I was afraid to finish it for fear it wouldn't be that good all the way through? It's that good all the way through! No lie. It's that good. Reconstruction, hope and heartbreak. Such a fierce read!

I was thinking about that book (and the indignant reviews) while I was hanging out the window, yesterday, pruning back the bougainvillea.

How is it that I never knew bougainvillea has thorns? big, ass-kicking thorns! I was looking at my palms with that little girl looks of surprise at pain. (See that? It wasn't even my palms, it was my fingers, but right away i gotta do that stigmata thing and say it was my palms!)

Over and over I kept repeating one sentence that Garlic says to Cynara, when she wants to know, did ya'll really kill [somebody]? He says to her "If we didn't, it was because we didn't have to."

I think it would be really interesting to read this book with Kindred or 47. Because--though I never realized it before--those books (that I LOVE) continue with certain conventions of the sentimental novel. People of color have to be GOOD, even in the face of evil. And that can mean "collaboration." I guess I'm thinking in terms of the postcolonial. Kindred is both about innocence, and not about innocence. What if Dana had decided to go the other way, and make sure that rusty-headed boy drowns? In a certain kind of way, she can't do that, precisely because she's a twentieth-century subject. And the slaves all rely on her to "save" him, and thus save them from worse circumstances. Without necessarily admitting it--without finding peace in it-- Dana chooses Rufous over Alice. And thus she is complicit in what happens to Alice, and as guilty as Rufous, in the end. The logic of white patriarchy corrupts.

But TWDG does not rely on "saving" certain white men as a way of "saving" black people. What's so scary about the book for some people is the way it refuses the "innocent" black subject. It refuses subservience, it refuses victimhood. Even as it shows how complicated everything is.

I love how she tells Lady's history. I guess for me, that is a salvation. And yet Phillippe duels to his death because he can't imagine his lover with a black man!

I've also been thinking about the challenge in both Kindred and 47, where there is clearly the message that "you let someone make you a slave." That's something that both Tall John and Dana say to the slaves, which just feels so unfair. Especially in light of history. Is that a secret emotion of twentieth-century African American subjects? How could you let yourselves be enslaved? TWDG is a fantasy, right? That, in fact, you did not let yourselves be enslaved: that to the extent that you were able--an extent never even imagined by white folks or Black folks, and an extent that would horrify them--you took power, changed the course of history, ensured your survival and the survival of your people.

miércoles, octubre 19, 2005

Back to Erdrich

What I should have said:
the truth is,
I am resisting LROTMALNH
deeply and on many levels.

this is becoming clearer to me, now that I've been talking about The Wind Done Gone, and the way people keep saying "this is not the book I thought it would be."

It frustrates my fantasy.

Seeking: Creative Writing on Katrina

Call for Papers: Creative Writings on Hurricane Katrina (10/30/05; journal issue)

The Wind Done Gone

The Unauthorized Parody by Alice Randall

Have you heard of this book?
The story of Gone with the Wind, told from the perspective of Scarlett's half sister, the daughter of Mammy?

How is it I haven't heard of this book? Granted I have been buried in my work for the last ten years (gasp!) But there was a lawsuit from the Margaret Mitchell estate trying to keep the book from being published. I should have heard that! And the Oakland Public Library has many many copies of it!

It is soooooooooooooo good!
How good is it?

It is so good that I want to stop reading it right now, for fear that it won't be able to keep on being so good.

because it is.

so good.

I want to stop where I am (only between 1/3 and 1/2 way through) and go back and read it from the start again, because i know how good it is, I just want to savor the knowing.

I know the [white] fans of GWTW hate it. Not because they're racist. Because they're stupid.

If you think I'm being flip, go read the reviews on Amazon, and the absolute HYSTERIA of folks saying what a terrible, terrible thing Randall has done, and how she must be a crazy bitter woman to have written such a thing, and PS "it's not funny!" (Oh, but it is! Because quiet as it's kept, you're the joke!) My favorite reviews are the ones that say "Randall had the chance to show good black people living righteously under horrible conditions, but instead she made them..." And really the word I think they're looking for is "family." not as in "like one of the" but as in, "you know why your mama hates the light-skinned slave children." And that's only the beginning.

No, no really. That's the thing. because this book picks up that globe that we've all learned and shakes it up and down and makes it snow inside.

I see glimmers and hope that what they hint at is true.

don't you?

martes, octubre 18, 2005

Last Report on the Miracles at Little No Horse


I think Louise Erdrich is one of those writers destined to confound me.

She writes novels that are not the novels I think I’m going to read. (see, it *is* me)

So, this one. Obviously I wanted it to be queer. I’m having that feeling I get when I read Estela Portillo Trambley’s play SOR JUANA, or Julia Alvarez’s IN THE NAME OF SALOME, where I *know* the character is a dyke it’s SO clear and yet here is this straight woman trying to tell me she’s not.

(No offense to Alvarez, whom I admire greatly. But Camila could have been so much more!)

I mean, poor Agnes is sooooooooooooooo heterosexual in this book. It’s just hard for me to really relate to her living as Father Damien but pining for floppy hats and fine lawn dresses. okay, I’m prob’ly overstating the case. But it would be so easy for Erdrich to make Agnes queer. BUT NO! put her in the same room with Father Gregory , and it’s like heterosexuality is this great [un]natural compulsion. (I guess that’s the point, huh?).

I mean, it has to be based on heterosexuality as destiny, otherwise we’d have to admit that anytime you have have two priests in the same living quarters they’re gonna have sex, and the same for the nuns in the convent.

It’s not that I’m opposed to heterosexual romance in drag; i just prefer for it to play with the queer predicaments that result, instead of immediately rushing to , whew, it’s okay, he’s really a woman.

I’ve only recently read David Henry Hwang’s M.Butterfly for the first time, and thought how much more romantic it would have been if Father Gregory had loved Father Damien without ever knowing he was a woman. Call me old-fashioned.

I’m listening to it on my commute. thirteen hours long and I’m somewhere in the middle of hour eight.

of course I’m cheating by re-reading PARABLE OF THE SOWER again. It’s for work! L* and I are going to teach it in our different classes simultaneously next semester. On our Trans Bay Reader Ship.

Okay, so heterosexuality as Destiny. I used to read that in Octavia Butler as well, but either she got over it, or I did. Because the last few books all have the “yeah, I could definitely go there” to them.

Falling into habit

Walking through Oakland
i peek into baby carriages

that lady
pushes a granny cart
by reflex
i smile at her bottled water

lunes, octubre 17, 2005

Your call is important to us. Please continue to hold.

Is it just me? Is it the hormones? Or is everyone filled with rage when left "on hold" forever? all my cell phone minutes just trickle away, and i don't know that a real person is ever going to appear at the other end of the line.

it's giving me a headache.

everything is giving me a headache today. (did i mention the hormones?)
credit card doesn't work: I get the message "call bank"

i call bank and get put on hold. what a racket. maybe my bank is secretly owned by the cell phone company.

how come my cell phone doesn't keep me informed just how long i have been on hold?!?
and why do they have to keep playing that awful music!

domingo, octubre 16, 2005

Whose story is this, again?

Oh, I saw this advertisement and it made me so mad I want to hit someone:


Razorbill Books is seeking a commercially minded author to write a comical yet poignant coming of age story for teens. Main character would be Latina--though story should appeal to a broad range of teens from other ethnicities (in much the same way that My Big Fat Greek Wedding appeals to people of all ethnicities). Narrative struggle would center on main character's attempt to reconcile her Hispanic heritage with the ways of the modern world.

Oh, yeah, right because "Hispanic" peoples are not part of the modern world.

It doesn't sound like they're looking for a Latino writer at all: they've already got they're little white narrative already written out...pinches desgraciados...

3 months worth of food?!

Ok, i have given up my futile struggle against L*s survivalist strategies.

I'm going to start stock-piling whole wheat flour (in a cool, dry, place), grow a sourdough starter [desem], and build an outdoor oven. then we can make apple/cactus/quince bread for all our friends and neighbors.

On another note, L* and I are moving forward with bringing our two CSU campuses a little closer together, through cyberspace and books in common in different classes. Leaning heavily toward Parable of the Sower right now. Which, of course, I'm reading for survivalist tips. (I know, I'm sure Octavia B is shaking her head at her crazy fans right now!)

Another broken helmet

My theory on the glass helmet:

I believe that our heads are covered by a glass, fishbowl-like helmet, extending about three inches beyond our skulls in every direction. ordinarily, that helmet protects our skulls as we run the daily risks of life, maneuvering our way into cars, bending down to pick things up. that's why we don't bang our heads on everything: the glass helmet protects us.

occasionally, however, we whack it too hard and it breaks, and after that we start cracking our skulls against all manner of things.

i broke mine again. !Ay!

climbing up while looking down, the solid "thwack" of bone on wood, the immediate flush of anger that always accompanies pain.

i'll have to be extra careful until the glass helmet grows back.

All together now: "poor baby!"

jueves, octubre 13, 2005

Audio Dysplasia

Hey, this is me! I don't believe it!

Arnaldo reminded me of my father, with his aura of melancholy charm and his aloof, gallant waswy with women. I loved his growl of a voice and the happy accidents with language which occurred whenever we talked. It was like I had audio dysplasia. Instead of seeing double, I heard double, something besides what Arnaldo was actually saying. "Trouble" when he said "travel," "gender" when he said "genre," "fold" when he said "fault," or "grammatic fever" when he said "rheumatic fever." But after laughing and sorting it all out, we'd come to the ironic conclusion that it wasn't a case of miscommunication at all, but understanding.

Jessica Hagedorn, The Gangster of Love (62)

miércoles, octubre 12, 2005

Which one's better?

The students are choosing which novel they want to do their projects on. They've been asking me confounding questions like "Bone or The Kite Runner: Which one's better?" How can you even begin to answer a question like that? They're both great. They are utterly different. The both affected me powerfully.

I nearly lost it in the middle of The Kite Runner. I was listening to the audiobook, read by the author. If you've read the book, you know the scene. I was crying and I had to stop the book, and then i went and found L* and told her "Why did you have me read this book?!?"

Bone is affecting in a whole other way. It's about a family of sisters, so that makes it ring true for me in all these different ways. It's emotional, and beautiful. I started reading it again as soon as I finished it. I don't do that too often, but I hadn't read the book straight through--there was a lag of a week or two at one point.

I'm reading Jessica Hagedorn right now. I love her. I think I resisted reading her for years, because of the title of her first novel. (I know, I know. I got over it). And the Gangster of Love! wow! I have to consciously resist thinking of Hagedorn as M2F. She's so good!

At first I was afraid no one would pick The Farming of Bones, or West of the Jordan.

L* and I have both been saying we need to start reading all the fabulous books from the last ten years. What with dissertations and new jobs, we're really well-read on the eighties, thru the mid-nineties, and on brand new stuff, but rather weak on the in-between stuff and on authors outside of our focus areas. Her folks give us good tips, too, because they know what books everyone is reading.

Thank god for the profs I TA'd for as a grad student, because I really had to go outside my comfort zone and confront my own ignorance and resistance, but I learned a lot from them.

kids everywhere!

One thing I love about Fruitvale is the babies!

SOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO cute! No lie. Like the other day, I'm walking along to the BART station, and you know I'm a happy fool when I'm on my walk. And I see this little chavalita and chavalito come tearing around the corner, heading toward me. and they're little. Both, under five, I'm sure. Running along having the time of their life. She's in pigtails and a cardigan. And I know they're too young to be out by themselves so I'm waiting. And sure enough, here she comes, running after them, in her hejab, a big ol' grin at her little traviesos.

And they are everywhere! quiet little boys on the bus. sleeping babies being wheeled along in their strollers. in braids and pigtails and raider's caps and wild-haired, in sweaters and sweatshirts and school uniforms. and happy because they get mucho love.

I see them on my walks and it just fills me with joy. they're like their own laughter.

you know it's time

You know it's time to write a new entry blog when you've read all your favorite blogs out there and are still hungry for more!

Why is it that some habits (soy latte, macaroons) you can build up without even thinking about it, while others (writing, exercise) slip away from you when you're not working at them?

I didn't write (blog) since last Friday and I didn't exercise either. I sat in my office chair for days on end, ostensibly working on a presentation. finally came to terms with that and now it's behind me.

At least I *have* an office chair. L*, mi diablito, has been making do with a folding chair since the move: we did get that taken care of!

with blogging: I think at least part of what was going on, was that I owed emails to too many people, and didn't want to post until I was all caught up. I still actually owe one more--to my new cousin, who sounds totally cool.

i posted the study guide for the midterm for one of my classes, and now I have the pleasure of seeing all the students log in and then download the lecture notes from the past eight weeks.

Mxi and Nxi are out enjoying the morning. those gatas are so full of beans these days! chasing each other throughout the house. calling out for someone to come play in the middle of the night.

Whoo, hoo! Lorna Dee's got a new book of poetry coming out!

bueno, i gotta get myself to campus. grad students coming and I need to make sure i got office space for meeting.

My sister C7e told me to bring my walking shoes when I come for Tday: she wants to make sure we don't all get cabin fever in her house and drive her crazy.

sábado, octubre 08, 2005

ugly parties

I have this cousin, g5t, who regularly emails everyone he knows jokes that he thinks are funny. These are almost always racist, homophobic, and sexist pronouncements. He grew up in texas, where he was cast predictably in the role of "indian" in every neighborhood game of cowboys and indians. he was raised by a racist abusive whitetrash stepfather

my mom--who's way more fierce than me--wrote him after the last homofobic joke and told him in no uncertain terms she didn't want to hear any more. me, i wrote a poem and then misplaced it in cyberlandia.

I have special filters set up, so anything that comes to me from g5t's email address automatically goes into "trash" or "junk."

Right now I'm between the old and new job email addresses, so I regularly check my trash and junk folders, to make sure i'm not losing anything important.

I made the mistake of opening one of his emails entitled "Why there was no looting in Texas." Surprise, surprise, it shows a picture of shotgun-toting redneck white men--and chicanos, of course, 'cause there's never no white man so lame and racist that some chicano ain't gonna stand right alongside him with the same shit-eating grin, like that's gonna make the chicano white all of a sudden, after 500 years of mestizaje). Next to this ugly party was a sign saying "U Loot, We Shoot"

(wake up, primo!)

More than anything, the crew in the foto looked like those horrible fotos from lynchings, when you would see white folk grinning next to a smoking corpse like it was the fourth of july picnic (and it might well have been).

and that's what it is, isn't it? like everything else tied to the racial scapegoating post-katrina, it's another glowing sign of white supremacy violence, armed, ready, and waiting.

viernes, octubre 07, 2005

Who are we to Judge?

L* and I have this running joke about the CNN anchors, Aaron Brown and Anderson Cooper...

Now mind you, I have a rule in the house: no celebrity gossip.

And L* , as you know, is a major CNN-slut

Anyway, L* says, on the blogs, they're all talking about Andersen and Aaron as Fire and Ice. And then we said, the next thing you know there's going to be all this Anderson/Aaron slash fiction.

(That's Andersen/Aaron porn fiction: where fans write about the torrid sex that goes on behind the scenes)

Oh, maybe that's why the show has them both standing at a table, with no place to sit down, like some weird kind of busy Starbuck's...

Okay, so anyway, (back to no celebrity gossip) CNN white girl was reporting about Tom Cruise and the girlfriend who is not Penelope Cruz, and how she's pregnant and so they are announcing their engagement. And Anderson says "I must have missed something," i.e. how can they be so shameless announcing the pregnancy and they're not even married yet, and white girl says back "Who are we to judge" and Aaron says "who, indeed"

and in my fantasy, Andersen stands up (well, he's already standing up), and says "WE ARE FAGGOTS, that's who we are, and that's what we do: WE JUDGE!"

miércoles, octubre 05, 2005

At the Office

i found out the little campus snackstore carries crystal geyser bubbly water, so i am enjoying a refreshing beverage while i print out the Report of the University Writing Task Force (which we'll be discussing at my second meeting of the day.)

i'm using my antibacterial wet ones (individually wrapped, from our OH-CA road trip) to wipe off the germs of public transportation (and a quick swipe of the keyboard while I'm at it)

L* is very concerned about the avian flu. It’s not a consuming interest for me, but i do appreciate the need for good hygiene. in fact, one of the cool things about using online course management systems is that students can turn in their assignments and i can grade them without catching a cold.

i spent the BART and shuttle ride over reading the final installment of Gardens in the Dunes. I’m winding down now. The last three chapters are really my favorite part of the book, and this time I’m understanding it a little better. At first I thought Delena was buying guns for the Mexican revolution (which doesn’t work out time wise) but now I know it’s for the Yaqui uprising.

as a result of that onroad reading, though, i’m feeling a bit queasy, so i ‘specially appreciate my bubbly water.

my office earthquake kit now consists of 11 bandaids, four tampons, dental floss, two doses of anacin, some dried fruit, and one teabag. seems pretty meager, now that i spell it all out. at least the anacin and the teabag have caffeine.

martes, octubre 04, 2005

Introducing…La Coral

L* and I went to the City on Saturday to see una extravaganza

Since we’d seen “Mastering Sex and Tortillas” (featuring Profesora Mama Chocha) in LA, years back, we were most interested in the new parts of the show: the introduction by Coral Lopez and the second act, featuring Papi Duro and the Latina Sex Bomb.

La Coral opened the show with a fierce stand-up act on queerness, naming, etc. She rocked the house from her warning announcement of “no flash photography.” In the opening she was total chicanita, like the students with their little pigtails and attitude. In the second act she was the Latina Sex Bomb and stole the show.

On the way home we talked a lot about the show. The difference between standup and performance. Por ejemplo, Marga Gomez is known for standup, but I saw her play her father in “A Line Around the Block,” and she was fabulous. Truly performance art. Highs and lows, and more moods than just laughter. The folks who went for her standup dismissed it saying “she wasn’t that funny.”

Luis Alfaro. Goes without saying. That man can pack some serious emotion. I wish I’d gotten the chance to see his ELECTRICIDAD…

domingo, octubre 02, 2005

grants, minigrants, and other deadlines

Trying to work on the application for the grants that are due tomorrow. 
I'm having some trouble framing it and wish I’d asked for advice sooner.

What I need to get done (as soon as possible) is the critical reader.  This is an anthology of previously published fiction by both well-known authors and those work circulated only in a very limited way.

What it will take to accomplish this: $$ for reprint rights and author's fees, a research assistant, and limited time.  Of these the money for the reprint rights and for student employees is the most important, so perhaps that means I should be applying for the Minigrant.

Bueno, I’ll save “time off” for another year :)

The main part i need to work on is the budget, so I need to imagine how many hours of work I’ll need from a TA, as well as how much money to devote to royalties, reprint rights, etc.

L* has been so sweet as to offer to read a draft if I can get it together. (She recommended I include the full book proposal)

Mxi is sullenly cleaning petromalt off of her face. I don’t know why she should be grouchy: I’m the one who had to clean up cat-butt-scooties off of my rug

Now I am being paid back for giving my grad students such tough comments last week. Now I’m the one who has to explain the methodology, justify my research plan, explain, expand, and develop.