Why Reclaim the Word “Queer”?

As a woman, the word “gay” does not describe me. I’m told gay is meant to be all-encompassing but if that were so, why do we say “gays and lesbians”? Wouldn’t that be redundant? It is similar to how women are told the word “man” is meant to apply to all of *mankind, yet I still get surprised looks when I walk into the men’s room. The next solution offered for describing queers is “LGBT.” First, let’s admit that “LGBT” is hella awkward. It’s hardly the catchy marketing hook you’d expect from a people known for being fashion-forward. More importantly the… tell me more

Bay to Breakers II: This is How We Run A Footrace in San Francisco

If you like to see sweaty people wearing costumes and running shoes, boy are you in luck: here’s my second batch of photos from San Francisco’s Bay to Breakers race. There’s even more photos in this batch. Here we have Towely, Elvis, Carmen Sandiego, Tellytubbies, Ghostbusters, (more)  Marios (and carts, actually saw a much better set of Mario Carts but didn’t get a picture), three Divo heads (the fourth was crossing the street), bathroom boy and girl,a boyscout, Jesus Christ and his two wenches, and a magic lamp that wins any contest for “most phallic costume.” And some other stuff…you… tell me more

Jason Jaworski at the Noise Pop Culture Fest

Festivals like the Noise Pop Culture Fest are ineffective for becoming a better artist. The time with each presenter is too short, the instruction too thrown together. It is a great place to find inspiration, however. Take Jason Jaworski. He’s not the first poet I’ve seen typing snippets of poetry on old typewriters and giving them away to the sources of their inspiration. But surely he has the most compelling delivery. While other street poets set themselves apart with dapper hats and gloves, Jason wears a prom dress and a wrap of silver crinkly fabric. His head is crowned with… tell me more

Neologisms

As part of the ongoing crusade to remove trite words from my speech, lately I've taken to using the word "puppycock." This is not to be confused with poppycock. Or rather, it is too be confused so that I may delight in making the correction. I use this word in situations of surprising dismay, such as stubbing my toe or discovering a parking ticket. "Puppycock" is a perfect curse word. It captures something real that civilized people would rather not think about in the space of nine letters. It conveys a clear image of this thing. It is disturbing enough… tell me more

Mission Buddhist temple

via flickr.com Architecturally, this is one of my favorite houses of worship in San Francisco. Not because it is the most beautiful, but because it is a Buddhist Temple occupying an old Victorian church. The brightly painted Victorians are tied to the city’s extravagant gold rush history. It also touches on the city’s long bohemianism, as the Hippies were the first to paint their Victorians in bold color schemes—the English stuck with somber monochromatic grey-white. But while the bold red paint fits in nicely on this Mission street, it is clearly chosen to mark the space for what it is… tell me more

Digression, Regression, Return

If there is a reason I don’t finish the-Great-American-Novel it is because I live in a world where I can track down lost sit-coms from my childhood. The kind like this episode of Square Pegs, wherein Bill Murray plays a substitute teacher who tells his student, “OK chocolate lady, do your thing to me.” This whole Square Pegs thing came up because my sweetie had a childhood crush on Jami Gertz, who plays a supporting role as the prissy gossip (yeah, I’m his type). I’m all, “oh, yeah, I do remember a show where Sarah Jessica Parker plays a nerd.”… tell me more

Why There Are Riots Tonight in Oakland

I wasn’t surprised that officer Mehserle wasn’t convicted of murder despite all the video footage and witnesses of him shooting an unarmed teenager. I first had my suspicions when Forum reported there wasn’t a single black person on the jury. But then I took heart in thinking that the prosecution would want a whiter jury so it would be harder for the defense to appeal. Besides, the victim, Oscar Grant, was hand-cuffed face down with another police officer’s foot on his neck. So for weeks I held out some hope for a verdict of second-degree murder. Mehserle claims that he… tell me more

We Don’t Need Facebook

Facebook has given privacy a kick in the groin. If this is news to you, you should probably check out: Facebook’s Gone Rogue; It’s Time for an Open Alternative [Wired] or Top Ten Reasons You Should Quit Facebook [Gizmodo] or Facebook Further Reduces Your Control Over Personal Information [EFF]. FB Privacy Policy: Longer Than the Constitution Those who’ve been watching the plucky start-up were already aware that Facebook is mired in accusations that it was founded by a crook and funded by a nut and some gooks. Into this fray comes Facebook’s controversy over their privacy settings. It used to… tell me more