Thursday, June 30, 2011

The Human Rights Campaign in the United States Defamed (quel horreur!)

Recent "vandalism" of the HRC's store in Washington D.C. came with the following denunciation (care of the Washington Blade):

"The HRC rakes in something approaching 50 million dollars a year in revenue–their executive director, Joe Salmonellamayonaisemanese pulls in a salary of several hundred grand. What have we gotten out of this bloated carcass? Not a thing worth mentioning and every now and then, they eagerly sell trans people up the river. Seriously, this is an organization that hordes money and does nothing useful. It’s a sad, sick dinosaur.

Meanwhile, in Washington, DC violence against the LGBT community is on the rise; DC’s only LGBT center is forced to go hat in hand to real estate developers and beg for space, only to face eviction a few years down the road; We lack a homeless shelter for queer youth and services for our community are the victims of budget cuts. Can you think of something better to do with a few million dollars?

(Did you know that 50 million dollars can buy about 300 thousand pounds of glitter?)

Everyone: We know you mean well, but stop giving these idiots your money. Stop putting that equal sticker on your car. Stop going to their lame galas. And for the love of Judy Garland’s Ghost and Robert Mapplethorpe’s Zombie Bones, stop saying “It Gets Better” and hoping for a miracle from up on high. We don’t expect you to riot (although we swear you’ll love it once you get going!) but it’s time for us to quit with the passivity, move to action, build community and care for each other instead of hoping the Gay Non-Profit Industrial Complex will ever get anything done.



Wednesday, June 29, 2011

A car collided with my bicycle and me

Everyone I know who commutes by bicycle long term has had some kind of accident. These accidents might be minor, as in breaking one's finger defending oneself against an opening car door, or, major, as in brain swelling resulting from a collision with a motorcycle. I myself avoided getting hit for my seven years until May 26th, hours before the birthday barbecue I had planned for myself.

I was pressured by my boss to attend a "grading-calibration" with other graduate instructors to discuss how best to mark papers and give appropriate feedback. After a pretty big fight with my boyfriend, I rode with an irritated and distracted mind. I flew down the hill toward the parking garage, entered the garage at an uphill angle, slowing me down significantly. I started making my way back to a point at which I would turn left and then head to my office. But my memory is blank but for the brief moment of the collision, where I see the driver's beige Mazda hit me from the side as I collide with the hood of the car, and then another blank space.

I came to sitting on the curb as a police officer attempted to gather information from me. The collision between my head the pavement had split my helmet, and the front fork of my bicycle was badly dented. I was walking and that was a good sign. Nonetheless an ambulance hustled me to the hospital; all the while making phone calls to see if previously-mentioned boyfriend could meet me at the hospital and alerting my boss that I wouldn't make it to the session. At that point I felt, not so much confused--I felt relatively lucid--but caught up in the ridiculousness of the scenario. I persisted in asking the doctors who stitched me up and the care-providers who cleaned off my wounds questions like, "Is it true that human mouths are ten times dirtier than dog mouths?" I think at that point the whole thing seemed so surreal for me.

After some tests and about twenty minutes of CAT scans it was confirmed that I had escaped with only three deep abrasions on my face and a minor concussion. The doctors decided that I should stay overnight so that they might monitor my concussion. Luckily, the trauma clinic room I inhabited for the night I shared with an older gentleman who had recently undergone surgery for his hernia. This man proceeded to spend all night watching Fox News loudly, tossing and turning in bed, complaining, and demanding room temperature ginger-ale for his ailing stomach. My boyfriend was terribly concerned and kept threatening to get the driver, a Chinese national, deported. But after washing off the blood and stank in my morning hospital shower I was free to go (incidentally, the hospital stay, x-rays, ambulance, etc. totally around $33,000 for those of you who want to argue that market mechanisms keep healthcare costs down).

Returning to find my bike I discovered the frame to be fucked (on consultation with a local shop) apparently it buckled from the collision. Because the frame is aluminum it is useless to repair as any hammering back into shape would produce a weaker frame. Moreover, the police report after much bureaucratic hassle indicates that there were no witnesses and the driver claiming he was driving 10 mph (downhill?!) and I on the other hand was going "quite fast." After discussing the matter with a lawyer he suggested that the case didn't look good precisely because it would be my speculations against the driver's word. This was rather disappointing to me precisely because I am now without my central means of transportation. Moreover, how could I have a concussion from colliding with someone driving 10 mphs? That has to be a lie!

More irritating, perhaps, is the fact that the concussion for about 2 weeks made it difficult to concentrate on anything for more than an hour seriously inhibiting my ability to work on my dissertation.

WEAR A DAMN HELMET! I don't give a fuck if it messes up your coiffure!

Friday, June 24, 2011

I've determined why it is I don't like Eminem...

I said as much on a car trip with my friend S, where we admitted to our mutual dislike of him.

eminem euri Pictures, Images and Photos

I've decided that his voice reminds me of my mother's if it was auto-tuned a few octaves lower.

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Al Jazeera's Fault Lines on Ciudad Juarez

Documenting the extreme disparity in exposure to violence between El Paso, Texas with the lowest crime rate in the U.S. and Ciudad Juarez, now the murder capital of the world.