Monthly Archives: May 2006

CBS Journalist Dotty Lynch Asks ‘Where’s the War Protests?”

This really galls me. CBS’s Dotty Lynch asks where all the war protesters are.

We’ve been here, you dumbass. (full analysis on DailyKos)

Here’s my email to CBS:

“But as the war in Iraq rages on I keep asking myself: Where are the young people this time around?”

Well if you’d been paying attention you would have seen the largest global demonstrations in world history for peace right around the time the war was starting. You’ll also notice constant, consistent action by citizen groups of all ages, backgrounds and stripes. You obviously aren’t paying attention Dotty. And for you to say this as a journalist who had the duty to inform the populace that there was dissent to the war – that it wasn’t inevitable – that the intelligence wasn’t solid – you guys stood by and let it happen because you were afraid of appearing unpatriotic and now blood has been spilled and the media’s compliance and addiction to access is partially to blame. We have been talking about the war and protesting it and writing about it and calling our members of Congress and educating our friends since the war in Iraq was a speck in Dick Cheney’s eye.

This really just pisses me off to have a journalist ask where the protest is – it’s all over the place. And for someone from a major network like CBS act like there’s no anti-war movement to cover is just flat out arrogant.

Celebrity Colonialism: Brad and Angelina in Namibia

A Western security force has effectively taken over the small African nation of Namibia. A beach resort in Langstrand in Western Namibia has been sealed off with security cordons, and armed security personnel have been keeping both local residents and visiting foreigners at bay. A no-fly zone has been enforced over part of the country. It is the security entourage of one Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie, the celebrity couple better known for living it up in LA than slumming it in Namibia. They reportedly wanted their first child to be born in Namibia because the country is ‘the cradle of human kind’ and it would be a ‘special’ experience. Welcome to the new celebrity colonialism.

International Mister Leather 2006, Mick Powers, Reefer Madness

(written last night, posted this morning)

It has been a fun weekend. Last night Ron and I ended up throwing in my air conditioners and watching movies all day.

We went to the gym in the morning (chest) and then had lunch at Ricebox and came home and broke out the power tools to install the air conditioners. We started to take a nap and then ended up watching Trick on the computer LCD panel in the bedroom. Ron loves that movie. He has Coco Peru’s monologue memorized (‘It burns!’). Then we threw in the copy of Reefer Madness (the musical) that I’d bought at the video store – it was 5 for $20 and I figured it would cost $4 to rent it so why not just buy it. It had Christian Campbell (who has played the same role in the musical from LA to Off-Broadway to the movie version) who is also in Trick. The movie also stars Alan Cumming, Neve Campell, Ana Gasteyer, Kristen Bell and Steven Weber. It’s got some fun jokes and songs but suffers from the ‘too many verses’ syndrome of most musicals on film – where the characters are stuck singing verses that would be more electrifying on a live stage than constrained by a television box. Ron nor I had seen the original 1936 film Reefer Madness – a educational/warning film about the evil Marihuana coming to undo our youth and enslave them. Its nice to know that ‘What about the children?’ panic is older than dirt.

We got a pizza and then watched Stepford Wives, which I’d also bought at the video store. It is written by Paul Rudnick who wrote Jeffrey and The Addamms Family movies and has a stellar cast. Plus, the girlfriend of roommate of Christian Campbell in Trick is in the movie as one of the wives (‘That’s because her name is Claire.’). I still like the twist of this remake at the end. I really like Roger Bart’s acting and still need to see him in The Producers movie.

We eventually went to sleep.

This morning we went to the gym (back) and then ended up at Chipotle for lunch. Came home and slept for a bit: Ron spooning me and me spooning kitty. Then Ron got home before the thunderstorms started up. There’s another set on the way right now. I really have gotten into the radar images on Yahoo weather. I like seeing exactly how far away the weather is at all times.

I like the white noise from the fans and air conditioners. I think it makes it seem even cooler here because you are insulated from the street noise a bit more with all these machines going.

Lately, when I’m sleeping alone, I’m really getting into having a pillow on each side of me, one on top of my chest, one under my knees and then one above my head like a headboard. I feel like I’m in a packing crate but I like feeling enveloped.

I’ve had lots of stomach gurglies this past weekend. Not sure what all of that is from.

We went to the International Mister Leather marketplace on Saturday. The brouchure said they have about 12,000 people go through there on Saturday and I believe it. We’ve usually gone earlier but arrived in time with the throng. You walk up into The Palmer House Lobby and are immediately greated with lots of leather – and that’s just the skin – I’m kidding. There’s hundreds (mostly men) of people standing around drinking and gabbing and generally gawking and yakking. We made our way to the registration line which took about an hour to get through. A had a delicious panic attack when we were in the middle of the line and they had a cordoned off maze where we had four layers of people on either side. Yeek. Eventually we made it out with our registration complete and made our way to the marketplace area.

The place was packed. The marketplace spanned two floors of the conference center and had at least five different rooms. It’s huge. The air was thick with the smell of leather and poppers and I was guessing a sociologist could measure the pheromones through the roof. What I always enjoy about IML is the complete harmlessness of rough (consesual, safer) sex – that there is such a sense of fun and frivolity in the leather community that they are all very friendly.

We ran into Jake who was looking quite ripped (though admittedly hungry) and David Cerda was working another booth. We also saw many guys from the gym and some of Ron’s buddies.

We saw Johnny Hazzard but didn’t run into Matthew Rush or Jason Adonis.

Mick Powers

We met a porn star named Mick Powers from Columbus Ohio. He had just starred in Centurion Muscle 2, SWAT and ButchBear Studio’s Muscle Bear Truck Stop. He likes short guys. A lot. “Because you can just pick ’em up!” Which he did: he picked me up much to Ron’s delight. He asked Ron if he had his permission to flirt with me which of course Ron agreed (Ron likes when I get ogled because it increases my perceived market value). Mick lifted up my shirt to check out my chest and the started to kiss my pecs. I politely drew him off me (I think public nipple-sucking is gross) and then I told him if he liked my chest he should check out Ron’s smooth B’s. Which he did. He was a sweet guy and had a Vermont Teddy Bear dressed up in leather that Mick has had pictures taken with his different co-stars in his movies. He’s moving to Philly soon from Ohio – good luck Mick!

Eventualy we bade him farewell and then ran into a booth with Tom of Finland shower curtains. The guy at the booth joked that he bet my parents would be shocked if I had something like that in my shower – I said that my mom would be more fascinated in the screen printing process and image transfer.

Gay porn seems so much less desperate than straight porn. I mean the people involved. Maybe everyone has their happy faces on but it seems less exploitive. Less encumbered with centuries of gender roles. I see more women at IML each year which I think is good – many are vendors – many are leather mamas and many are straight gals looking to see what all the fuss is about.

This weekend is also when they host the Grabby awards for gay adult films with categories such as Best Group Sex Scene and nominees such as Desperate Husbands and 8 Simple Rules (for Doing My Son). Maybe we’ll go next year. They even have a category for Best Non-Sex Role – now that would be fun. What if I was the guy that actually did order the pizza?

The leather scene remains predominantly a white guy’s enterprise – a scattering of black men and maybe one or 2 asian guys in full battle regalia.

The funniest part of IML remains seeing these big beefy masculine men in leather and tattoos come up the escalator and then they see somebody they know and immediately drop into ‘Girl! How you doin’? I haven’t seen you in so long!’

It is later and I don’t hear the rain yet.

Chicago Pride Parade 2006 Grand Marshall: GEORGE TAKEI!

Fantastic news! This is just as great as Esera Tualo! Of course if Ron asks me if which movie Mr. Sulu is in – is it the one with Han Solo or the one that says ‘nanoo-nanoo’ with the Ewoks I might have to divorce him.

And no I didn’t have a crush on George Takei when I was younger. I just really admire him for his work in keeping visible the crazyness of the Japanese internment camps in WWII (in which he was interred) as well as coming out and being a positive role model. And I just think he’s a cool guy all around.

Government-Subsidized Haircuts

It is 8:01 and I just did Ron’s first courtesy call for our eventual meeting at the gym in probably and hour and a half. I’ll call him again in 20 minutes and make sure he confirms he is actually standing up out of bed.

The finale of 24 was fantastic! WOW. Great reversals and intrigue and an ending that I think reaches the shock of the end of Season 1 which I think is one of the best season endings of any TV show ever. You can almost hear the writers giggling in devilish glee – ‘Wait until they see THIS!’ I think that Season 5 is the third best season. In order of virtuosity.

1. Season 1
2. Season 3
3. Season 5
4. Season 4
5. Season 2

Ron just called back. He’s not going to gym after all. He’s still sleepy. Heh. He works this afternoon.

A few sneezes brewing in my nose right now – waiting for OTC Claritin to take effect.

Ron and I watched that Frontline special on the retirement status of America and it was just as shocking the second time around. Yes, I’m that much of a dork: I taped a PBS special, watched it myself and then watched it again with Ron.

Lots of phone calls and follow-ups today. I did get those transcripts delivered to the proofreader and the audio to the audio engineer. So that’s in process. I need to get cracking on that third book proposal. I’ve been putting it off. I just need to sit my butt in the chair and do it.

The pension/retirement debate is difficult because most folks don’t know the context of it. We don’t hear the history of how Xerox and Kodak influenced Congress to produce the 401k legislation. We don’t hear about the dangers of pensions versus 401ks. What really drives me nuts is there never any reporting on how other countries are handling these issues. It is like the US thinks they are so exceptional that there is nothing to be learned by the rest of the billions of people out there that face these very same issues.

Ron was quizzing me on why I thought Americans were so ill prepared and why do these trends happen in this country. I think a big part of it is education and history. European countries seem to see the economy as a system that supports life – not an end in of itself. Is that why things veer a little more socialist than here in the States? I don’t know. In a consumer-drenched culture there is little impetus for savings. Savings isn’t sexy (Can you imagine if it was? That’d be a feat for Madison Avenue). I think we are sold on ‘ownership’ but most people don’t want the responsibility that comes with ownership. Is mandated savings the only way? Is mandating employees into a 401k the only way? Is this part of that Nanny-state conservatives reel from? In an economy where education and savings aren’t valued – which will lead to more people on government assistance – shouldn’t we mandate tools that ensure people can survive in the long-term without having to draw on social programming?

This is leaning towards the fiscal conservative angle that by helping out the poor we are subverting their economic development. It’s tricky. How long do you support people before you just say ‘Ya know what? You obviously don’t give a shit about your own future? Just go away.’ There are people in the world that simply don’t care about their own well-being or welfare – does that mean their kids should suffer? Or is it the parent’s responsibility to ensure that their kids are taken care of and they are just being bad parents?

I vote:

1) Free, widespread, unfettered access to contraception including Norplant for all women including full reproductive rights (access to abortion)
2) HIV testing implemented as part of normal routine physicals
3) All electronic voting machines have a paper-based, verifiable audit trail plus opensource software

oh and

3) Government subsidized haircuts – really folks – I mean REALLY.
4) A complete ban on jean shorts

oh and

5) Caps on credit card interest rates (which seem to be nearing loan-shark territory)
6) Caps on ATM fees

Am I nuts? Perhaps. Between foreign-owned debt, the pension timebomb, the potential devaluation of the dollar, oil prices, the future of Social Security and the trillion-dollar War for Profits, it might just make a bit of sense.