Archive for May, 2003

And one more thingAnd another

And one more thing

And another thing – speaking of lack of respect and journalists – I just read an article in The Guardian by a reporter who interviewed Salam. I really, really hope Salam gets more than a pizza out of this and more than 15 minutes of fame. We who read his blog should be paying him. Think of all the crap journalists out there and their pretensions of objectivity – and they make money for churning out their cookie cutter stuff. We should be supporting people like Salam and Christopher Allbritton. It may not be formal, or “objective” but I don’t trust that kind of objectivity. Give me imperfection, give me flaws, give me wit and honesty over formality and credentials any day. I am also going to write to The Guardian and suggest that they pay Salam for all the giant chunks of his blog that they have been reprinting all through the war. Other papers too.

An untrustworthy witness to historyI

An untrustworthy witness to history
I hate to link to this kind of heinosity but:

The Elusive Mr. Peace by Bryan Preston spouts off in an incredibly obnoxious way about Salam Pax.

It’s mind boggling to me that someone from America can write this with a straight face. From this country, where to be a technocrat is privilege itself, and just being a citizen makes one an “insider”? Has this National Review guy talked to a non middle class person lately, or an illegal immigrant? Does he imagine that to some “average American” his intellectual crap would be any less alien than mine is, or than Salam’s might be to some “average Iraqi”, whatever that might be (and I wouldn’t know!) Is Preston some kind of saint who would give up all his money and family connections to help people who are unjustly imprisoned or tortured by his government or anyone else’s? As if, because Salam Pax grew up in some wealthy family and is educated and has technical knowledge, he is not only complicit with all the injustice of his country’s government, but must be a spy? Why would this be any more true for him than for privileged people in our country? Doesn’t our privilege feed off not just this country’s poor, but whole other nations? Doesn’t our wealth seem to depend on keeping others down? Because I can gossip with someone I know about some internal computer policy at a big company, does that make me a corporate spy, just because I’m in a position to know them? If some cousin of Jenna Bush had a blog and said some sarcastic and cynical things about the war, would everyone jump to the conclusion that this cousin is a spy? It’s nonsense. If this country were invaded and occupied, would Preston agree that every rich kid who went to Harvard and who came from a Republican family was as “untrustworthy” as Salam, and likely to be not only a spy, but if they keep a diary, whether public or not, an incompetent spy? That Harvard kid can’t have an opinion, or record what’s happening around them as their world turns upside down? Some armchair journalist across the ocean would of course be WAY more qualified to decide what “history” is!

Why would sarcasm, cynicism, being able to afford a computer and a pizza, and not having The Answers to everything make anyone “an untrustworthy witness to history” ? Am I making myself “an untrustworthy witness” just by writing this? I suspect so! After all, I curse the dictatorial regime of my country, and hate its policies, but accept the $400 tax refund I’m about to get, and I let my dad put me through college, and lord knows he got his money and his dad got his, by working for land-raping exploitative oppressive global evil oil companies! My freaking privilege was sucked right out of Nigeria and Indonesia and Colombia and Venezuela and Ecuador! And yes! That means I have the means and the words and the nerve to say whatever obnoxious thing I please – and otherwise I might not have any of those things. And I like to think that, under an even more extreme dictatorship, I would continue to say whatever I please, and damn the torpedoes. Does this National Review guy think it’s impossible that anyone “elite” would make that decision? I suppose every upper class journalist and poet and union organizor and revolutionary and politician that ever got put up against the wall and shot by some military junta was “an unworthy witness” and “trying to lead a life of irresponsible leisure”. What the fuck?! What leisure is he talking about?

I guess what pisses me off the most is the complete lack of respect Preston and other journalists have shown for Salam. They show their ignorance and racism but even more than that – a complete lack of imagination that many people decide to stay in a dangerous situation when they don’t have to, and that people like Salam write even when writing honestly means they risk death.

I am boiling mad!

brillo and macheteMy dad seemed

brillo and machete

My dad seemed kind of overexcited at the thought of buying a machete at the hardware store. He’s back there wearing some kind of hip holster and chopping the weeds like they’re hydra heads. I have been picturing how to apply a tourniquet. Mom has made many things lemony fresh that have never been lemony fresh before. I am exhausted. L, I hope you are going to cook dinner. I may pass out. I believe your kitchen may be exuding a certain lemony freshness. Was I supposed to stop that…?

constant subtle deferenceThree Differences between

constant subtle deference

Three Differences between an Academic and an Intellectual – this article by Jack Miles is GREAT!

the full-blown humanities doctorate — particularly if it is followed by long years of probationary appointments and then a negative tenure decision — grievously delays a young person’s entry into the general marketplace, burdens him or her with enormous debt, and inculcates over the years the self-destructive habit of constant subtle deference.

Saddle soreWe just got back

Saddle sore

We just got back from the dude ranch. My ass hurts, my brain seems to be gone, I’m sunburned, and worst of all, I really miss the horse. I could not stop thinking about Black Beauty‘s misery in the livery stable. Was my horse suffering under my horrible bumpy rein-yanking riding? And is it going to suffer even more now that I am not there to feed it apples? (Yes.)

Will those wranglers ever brush it or hose it off or look at its hooves before and after every ride or put it in a special horse blanket to cool down as recommended by the Pony Club Manual? (Not bloody likely.)

Highlights of the trip:

Hiding a geocache at the very end of a shaft of an old abanadoned gold mine
Loping (cantering, if you are not riding Western)
Petting horses
Petting (mauling) tiny little spotty foals
Drinking mare’s milk
Talking fake “western talk”
Catching frogs in the dark with flashlights for the big “frog rodeo”
Awful food
Awful karaoke
Criticizing other people’s bad riding
Yelling at little kids who talked for hours about the horses peeing and pooping
Fashion mistakes (clue to the midwestern woman, do not wear giant mattress sized maxipads with stretch pants, and then bend over)
Genial, laconic wranglers with mustaches, big hats, plaid shirts with pearl buttons, funny walks

I can’t find info on that abandoned mine anywhere.

dude!On our way to the


On our way to the dude ranch. Don’t ask!

Maybe they’ll have net access, maybe not. Cowgirl up!

blog as you’re watching it,

blog as you’re watching it, because if you’re not blogging, you’re not really experiencing it

So says L. as we watch the fabulous movie “Dolemite”.

“Tell him I want him out of here in 24 hours. And 23 of them have already gone.”

“I’m so bad I kick my own ass twice a day.”

rich, chocolatey goodnessMy class laughed

rich, chocolatey goodness

My class laughed and ate the penis and vulva cookies (see below). If anyone was horrified or indifferent, they kept quiet about it. The feminaries also seemed to amuse!

Tasteless yet so tasty!L. helped

Tasteless yet so tasty!

L. helped me make a double batch of tasteless yet tasty totally inappropriate anatomically correct vulva and penis cookies (for my class tomorrow as I do my Wittig/Le Guin presentation)

Sugar cookies and gingerbread to make them symbolically bi-racial… The vulvas have red-hots for clitorises and the penises and vulvas both have a creamy lemon frosting.


They look SO NASTY yet so martha stewart.

Was going to get those silver BBs to make some of them pierced, but it was 10 bucks for a tiny little spice-jar size container of BBs, so I didn’t.

Once I was elbow-deep in cookie dough, I remembered, gradually, that all the other times I made them:

A) the molasses ginger cookie dough is too sticky
B) it also puffs up really big so I got huge brown penises and pencil-dick white ones
C) and huge fat brown vulvas and delicate thin white vulvas/labia
D) it’s not the Lemon Glaze it’s the Quick Lemon Icing.
E) but since I made the glaze by accident, might as well use it too
F) because it melts into the cookies and tastes really good under the thick white variety of icing

I have no idea if this goes way over the line for a school setting, but if they’ve all read the Wittig, they’ve already dealt with more people pissing all over each other and descriptions of vulvas and vaginas than one would expect in a class… soooo…. why the hell not…

Can’t remember when I invented these – it was certainly back in 21st St. Co-op days so that would be late 80s or early 90s.

You need a dough that can be handled – sugar cookie recipies work well. Maybe peanut butter or ginger snaps would be better for the brown variety.

To make the vulvas:

1) roll a cookie dough snake about 4″ long and maybe 1/2 to 3/4″ thick
2) lay it on the cookie sheet
3) fold it in half to make the labia majora – pinch the ends to make a sort of canoe shape. I always think vaguely of some quote from Inanna about the narrow boat of heaven…
4) use your pinkie to make the urethra first, then a vagina below it
5) put in a red hot
6) make another “snake” and flatten it for the labia minora. Here is where you can really have fun because you want your inner labia to be all shapes and sizes. Tee Corinne’s Cunt Coloring Book is good for inspiration, as is Chapter 9 of Burton’s translation of The Perfumed Garden.
7) It works well to have your inner labia meet right over the red hot; pinch together for clitoral hood and shaft
8) edible BBs for piercings are optional…

For the penises:

You have to keep in mind that making them big means they are kind of big for individual cookies and also can be a problem for structural integrity. Small works better!

1) roll penis shaft – whatever thickness… make some of them curvy… some straight… etc. Consult your favorite live models, porn mags, or Chapter 8 of The Perfumed Garden if you feel retro.
2) put them on the cookie sheet and pat them down a bit
3) make 2 balls roughly equal (or whatever) and put them on at the base
4) roll another ball to be the glans – fold it over slightly and pinch it for a great urethra effect
5) stick it on the shaft so it overlaps a bit. Voila!
6) you could add piercings or vary the design to make some of the penises uncut…

Frost them while they’re still warm, you get a fabulous and kind of disgusting melty result of sticky and glazed-doughnut looking shininess combined with thicker spots of the frosting that looks white. Ewwww! But very good!

Strawberry jelly can also be used for the vulvas: great for puberty initiation rites, PMS parties, vampires, or newly joined Hell’s Angels!

If you serve these to people who are drunk or a bit uninhibited you get some very good photo opportunities – usually involving vile and obscene licking of frosted vulvas.

It’s eating my brain!One more

It’s eating my brain!

One more paper to go. Why, why, why did I decide to write some sort of feminist thing? Was baited into it. I didn’t even open my mouth about gender in this class until about the 10th class out of 12. And then the other day several people were saying to me, “Oh… wait… you have a baby? I just assumed you were… um… a lesbian…? Because you’re always talking about that in class”. Mega-irritating:

1) I talked about feminism and gender issues in 2 classes. (1 talk out of my 7 for the class)
2) Because I criticize some novel as Not Very Feminist, and gender essentializing of male and female, I must be a lesbian?
3) Because I have a kid, I must not be a lesbian?

The mind boggles. Hello world? Am I in San Francisco here?

Also noted that whenever any other girl in the class said something about gender, she would do all the excessive qualifying statements like “It seems to me like maybe it could be, but correct me if you think I’m wrong, that blah blah blah”. While smiling, giggling, or placating. Now, I noticed myself giggling and qualifying as well, but I did manage to squelch it.

I am overwhelmed with near certainty that the prof, who seems basically nice, is going to condescend all over my paper because my feminism isn’t grounded in enough logic, or something. That’s just so backlash. I can’t help expecting it! We’ll see. I refuse to apologize for not being good enough to take apart the master’s house with the master’s Power Tool.

The one guy who brought up gender issues was fabulous, radical and incoherent as me, but no one jumped up his ass about logical grounding.

Fact also remains that prof’s only advice for me was that I should “consider the humor” of the book I’m dissing; that I should read his papers. Was kind of hoping for a “you might look at X feminist theorist for help”, but noooo.

Meanwhile have been further making my blood boil by reading “sexism in gaming” thread on The Forge and the lame-ass comments to Beth “Gamerchick”‘s articles on Gamegrene. Rant mode engaging! Down, girl! Down, girl!

Grrrr. Grrrrrumpy.

Dr. Lizardo out.