Happy Valentine's Day! And...

"When tradition is the guise under which prejudice or animosity hides, it is not a legitimate state interest."--Judge M. Brooke Murdock, Maryland

"The more I make love, the more I want to revolt. The more I revolt, the more I want to make love."--Graffito seen in Paris, 1969

Tomorrow, the Supreme Court of a state close to us, New Jersey, will be hearing arguments for and against same-sex marriage. We want the court to find it constitutional, of course. It would be nice to be considered married when we go to the beach, too.

It amazes me that opponents of same-sex marriage can so conveniently just forget that their boogeymen and boogeywomen are actually real people with real lives that are really going to get affected. I guess that's how they're able to do what they do and say what they say, though, is by pushing any thoughts of our humanity out of their heads. My mom is actually hoping that Maryland makes same-sex marriage legal so that K and I will be tempted to move to the suburbs of Washington DC, where she works a lot. She wants her kids a bit closer, and she knows we love DC. Granted, I have already spoken to y'all about how much easier it is to love her from a distance, and there would be some arguing either way, but the arguing would have nothing to do with my sexual identity or the gender makeup of my marriage. It would, in fact, sound an awful lot like my kid brother and his wife's discussions with my mom. (They love DC, too. At one point, we all lived within a block or so from each other in an Orlando suburb--wouldn't it be weird if we ended up all being a few miles apart in DC?!)

The homophobes don't want to think about that, though. They don't want people on the fence to think about mothers who want both their daughter and son to move close to her and bring their wives. They don't want people on the fence to think about what a surfing accident could do to a same-sex couple and how the laws affect us driving from state to state. (Knock on wood!) I'm proud to chronicle our lives together as not only a vent for my own emotions, but a way to *get* people thinking about these things. Like the Who in "Horton Hears a Who," I'm going to go "Yop!" whenever a big ol' elephant thinks it can just sit on me!

We had Valentine's this weekend, we told ourselves and each other. She's working tonight. But still, we had lunch together, and we exchanged rings we'd bought each other from Sundance without each others' knowledge this morning. (We'll be eating ramen the rest of the month, but we'll love looking at our hands while we do it!) I made heart-shaped pancakes, too. We love Valentine's Day. Of course, I'm aware that it's an easier holiday to love when you're in love, but there it is--we're in love. Let it be acknowledged!

Garth Brooks is reassuring me right now through his song that "Love Will Always Win." He would know. He and Trisha Yearwood loved each other from afar for years. It was a scandal in country music when they ended their marriages and moved in together. They finally married last December, and some people are still pissed at them. I'm not--a lot of people don't get it right the first time, and it's wonderful to see people who got it right eventually.

To me, that's what Valentine's Day is really about. Hearts and flowers and cards are nice, but it's really about how radical and revolutionary love can be, and how it can cause seismic shifts in the world around us even when it's being tamped down. The story about St. Valentine is that when the Roman emperor Claudius made marriage illegal in 270 CE, on the grounds that single men made better soldiers and he needed some, he married soldiers to their sweethearts in secret anyway. It's not often that I find a story of a saint inspiring. I was never Catholic. But I've always been a sucker for a good story about love.

Here's hoping everybody who reads this is living an amazing love story or will begin one eventually. :-)
  • Current Mood
    loved loved

It's all about LOOOOOVE...

And even those of you who don't feel loving for some reason or another can have fun, too. Keep scrolling!

My wife will be working Valentine's night, so we decided this weekend was our Valentine's Day. Surfing, the Budweiser Shootout, and tons of quality time! Yee-haw!

Also, I now have tickets to go to the Architectural Digest Home Design Show. I am so happy I can burst. It's right on my birthday, too! Maybe they'll let me have a gift...or maybe I can take the big purse. :-)

I have a whole bunch of links I just wanted to share.

This is for giving to creeps who ask for your MySpace profile.

Forget the magic 8-ball--let the Magic Champagne Glass answer your love questions!

An excerpt from the Sweet Potato Queens' Wedding Planner/Divorce Guide Yes, it flips over.

MAD TV explores the question of whether it's just a little gay for two guys to make out.

The Valentine's Day convo NOBODY wants to be on the receiving end of!

And finally, am I the only woman who looks at this panda picture and thinks of a teenage encounter?! I sure hope so!

Happy Valentine's Day and Half-Price Chocolate Day to all y'all! :-)
  • Current Music
    "Brighter Than Sunshine," Aqualung

Gods bless America!!!

Not even 24 hours after the SOTU!!!

Picture's also a link. How freakin' hilarious is this, and how reflective is it of the truly good parts of America--humor, capitalism, speed, technology, and style?!

I'm gettin' two, one for me and one for my beloved. I'll say I'm a panda hybrid--a manda. :-) That'll explain my cute round face and not-so-cute round belly!
  • Current Music
    The Star-Spangled Banner

Things that were more interesting to watch than the State of the Union address

*American Idol--the deluded "psychic", the scary bus driver with the scary mullet, the cool black chick who worked in a prison and sang "Redneck Woman". Las Vegas has some interesting people!
*The PandaCam, with hip-hop by a group called--seriously--Giant Panda for background. The baby boy looked like he was moving to it!
*Executive instructional videos from The newest, about addressing employee complaints, is AWESOME!
*My wife, cuddled up on the couch with a blanket, a book, and hot tea after a long day's work, looking ever so cute in her reading glasses.

(no subject)

Let me begin by saying that I love National Geographic magazine. A few days ago, I suggested buying subscriptions to it and Discover for schools where “intelligent” design is taught. For Valentine’s month, they featured an article on the science of love. At first I enjoyed it. Then something occurred to me. Not only was same-sex love not mentioned, very little could even apply to same-sex lovers. All of the science—pheromones, the purpose of climax, waist-to-hip ratio—centered on how humans developed these things all for the purpose of making other little humans. I have encountered that attitude often enough—it is, I think, a secular version of the old “sex is designed for procreation” pronouncements made by fundamentalist and other controlling churches.

And of course, baby-making is a perfectly valid and necessary purpose! But anyone who has ever loved a member of their own gender knows that there are other reasons to love. K and I wondered whether that could be why gay love makes some people so very nervous. On the surface, at least, it has all the pleasures of passion, with none of the responsibilities of reproduction. (Anyone who knows a real same-sex couple, even a childless one, knows there are responsibilities for us, too—household, bills, health care, emotional support. But those things weren’t in the National Geographic article, either.

Ultimately, I found myself a bit upset at the blatant heterosexism. What Indians and Italians thought of love belonged. What gay and bisexual Americans thought didn’t. In their own backyard is a culture that they ignore. We may even have insights for the love doctors about non-reproductive reasons for love, but they need to quit trying to account for the origins of our “disease” that leads us to same-sex loving first! It’s annoying.

Thankfully, NG also has a forum about this.

The one part I totally agreed with is a statement about the article’s photographer, Jodi Cobb: “She came to see love as a human rights issue, particularly for girrls.” I dearly hope to see young women in India and Muslim countries able to love freely within my lifetime. But American women, like my shero Victoria Woodhull, had to fight for that right, too. Some of us are still fighting. Some men are as well.

I try to remember that we’re luckier, that I’m luckier, than 90 percent of the world. When we first got this issue, we sat on our couch in our solid home, cuddling and reading by electric light, well-fed and well-clothed, and how lucky is *that*? After the love article was one about the endangered Kamchatka bear of Siberia. A picture of bear skulls and corpses flayed by poachers made me gasp and cry. I love bears! K loves them, too, but these were *her* bears and *her* land and *her* desperate people. “That poor sick country,” she whispered. “I am so afraid…that when I can finally go home again, home will be all gone…” That was all she said about that. I held her tight, and we patted each other’s backs and cried, and then we just *kept* comforting each other. How blessed we are, even if science can’t and scientists won’t account for why just yet.
  • Current Music
    "Grand Prix," Giant Panda

"Dude, you couldn't make it as a woman."

This is what I blurted to my straight male work friend, when he and I had a quick argument and quickly made up early this morning. But it brought up something that annoys me witless.

He'd been looked at, and then asked if he was "one of us", by a gay man on the subway this morning. He was so upset, I kept asking if there was something more. No, that was it.

I have had my ass grabbed, been propositioned in crude terms, etc. on public transport. I see this shit so often--if not me, some other poor woman--that I just sort of have a high tolerance. You slap, you yell, you joke, you move on.

Sometimes guys are nice, and just being appreciative. This gay dude seemed to be that way. I just flash the ring in those cases. I mean, even if I think they're cute and might welcome their attention if I were single, I'm not. K gently tells them they're barking up the wrong tree. If we reacted to male attention the way my work friend did, we'd be seen as man-hating bitches, and they'd be right.

"He was looking at the wrong kind of person," my friend said. "He thought I was the kind of person who'd be interested in him!"

"Boo-hoo," I replied. "How do you treat a woman who doesn't interest you?"
"I say no. I tell her I have a girlfriend."
"Do you get offended that she looked?"
"No..." I advised him to treat a man the same way he treats those women. It seemed to make sense to him; it also seemed to make sense to him when I talked about how I laugh at women who cry sexual harassment if a man just tells them they look pretty today.

I'm PMS-y today (though I'd sooner die than tell him that, you women know how that goes), and I've seen less action than a rich Republican's kid in the National Guard this week. So I'm all sensitive. But I felt a real need to call BS today.

Stupid little things

I haven't said much lately, because I haven't had much to say.

I am such a stereotypical girl. We found a half-grown stray cat this weekend and couldn't resist taking him in. Plus, there was an article on endangered Kamchatka bears in the new National Geographic, and they showed a bloody bear body with skull, flayed by poachers, and I gasped and cried.

I can be butch. Today my wife took the cat to the vet for a checkup. I was relieved that the checkup was half-price. The vet is boarding the cat. He's very sweet and pretty; I'm sure he'll have a home. But K cried at the idea that someone may not. I hate to hear my woman cry.

I am so thrilled I got to hear and see Sinead O'Connor in concert, because once again, she cancelled the last leg of the tour. Illness, she says. Don't know whose or what kind of illness. I just hope whoever it is will be okay, and my fellow and sister fans on the West Coast get another opportunity. But nobody loves her for her reliability.

Speaking of Sinead, I like to practice my belly-dancing to her music. (For some reason, her voice makes my hips move. ;-) I now have another dance class--ceili, which is Irish, mostly jigs and reels. My belly-dancing instructor asked me if I would be practicing ceili to Middle Eastern music.

Oh! And y'all know I like stupid labels, right?

On my can of Clorox Lavanda (Lavender, in Spanish) Disinfecting Wipes:

Not for cleaning or sanitizing skin.
Do not use as a diaper wipe or for personal cleansing.

Clorox wipes are bleach-free (and that's another stupidity--wouldn't you think they'd have bleach?), and these smell good, but it's still a little scary to me that this part of the label was actually NEEDED.