Tuesday, December 27, 2005

Bits and Bats

Hello, all. Hope your holidays, whatever they be, have been happy. As you can probably tell, mine have been pretty low-key, involving mostly copious viewing of Degrassi Junior High DVDs. Clearly, there's something suspect about people who watch afterschool specials for fun, but the show is really good for both intentional and unintentional laughs.

Note to self: if you ever have offspring, use DJH to illustrate exactly how stupid teenaged peers are at any given moment, and how bright it is to resist any pressures they might exert.

In other news, I'm done with the first and last course I will ever teach. I am now trying in vain to get up the gumption to finish the fucking papers I need to write and revise so that I can leave this academic hellhole. Unfortunately, my complete lack of desire to do this is getting in the way. So. Moving on to happier topics.

I did not strangle any family members for christmas. Because this is a season of giving, and I give the gift of life! My family, in return, gave $206 dollars to America's Second Harvest, allegedly instead of gifts. It was more like "in addition to" gifts, because the Crazy Aunts (my mother is one of them) still bought little trinkety things for everyone. And I nearly blubbered because the best gift I got at that gathering was a bag chock full of Tic-Tacs -- my aunt's Whatever (yes, my aunt has one too) had found out two days before that I love mints, so he went out and got me a bunch of them. He's kinda quiet, and I don't get to see him very often, and I usually get lost in my great big family where everyone's always doing something more interesting than I am, so I was plain touched to be remembered.

My mom's Whatever is here visiting again. The house is, as ever, way too small for three grown people. I don't mind so much; for the first time in years, I've been rather relaxed and happy during this holiday season. I'm beginning to suspect that this is a harbinger of alien invasion, but hey, a least I'll go out happy!

It's quite possible that this is the most boring post I've ever written. I'd apologize, but I'm not sorry -- boring equates to no drama in my mind, and that is a fabulous thing.

Monday, December 26, 2005

Degrassi Quote of the Day

¨I could do with a good romance, but what I´d really like is a hickey.¨

Wednesday, December 21, 2005

Degrassi JH Quote of the day:

"So what do you suppose swamp sex robots do, anyway?"

Monday, December 19, 2005

Happy 1000th post

MAAAAKE IIIIIIT STOOOOOOP!!! Make it stop make it stop make it stop.

The plagiarism drama goes on, as I get a holy belated email that says my email to said student never went through. Went to webmail to find out why, lost notification, found sent mail (webmail has cleverly disguised this as a folder called "untitled"), found that email address was FUBAR in the original, forwarded to student after panicked phone call to advisor who is SICK OF MY ISSUES (listen, lady, so am I).


Never. Teaching. Again.

Saturday, December 17, 2005

Silver Lining

The good news is, this may be the perfect weekend for me to see Brokeback Mountain: I'm already bummed out, so the depressing ending won't get me; I'm not very entertaining, so when I inevitably end up seeing it alone, I won't have to feel guilty about dragging someone else out to a depressing movie and then crying all over them; and I WON"T HAVE TO FILL OUT ANY PAPERWORK AFTER SEEING IT.

Nope. Still fucking bitter. Going to bed now.

Friday, December 16, 2005

Miserable Fucking Day

Spent most of the day dealing with a fucking plagiarist (this has eaten much of my grading time over he past three days). This meant that I had to haul ass in to the office on a fucking Friday, spend more money than usual on parking this week, and email everyone on earth who deals with This Type Of Thing. And then fill out the paperwork, photocopy the evidence, and send in the complaint.

And I still have a fuckload of grading to do.

And then? John Spencer died.

I call a do-over. This day is foul.


To those who have heard naught but monosyllabic grunts from me via email, contact me after tuesday. I have been grading and fielding student emails about grades to the point where my "you've got mail" chirp makes me want to shoot my computer.

Bed now.


Wednesday, December 14, 2005

My War On The War On The War On Christmas

I was getting all depressed about this fundie nonsense regarding the "war on christmas" (apparently, the only holiday ever held this time of year is the Christian one, and so "happy Holidays" is inappropriate. I'm so behind the times). Then some kind person linked to Fuck Christmas, which is the kind of vulgar social commentary I can really get behind.

My spirits were bouyed, but still, I got hives every time I thought about those sanctimonious assholes insisting that this is a time of shopping during which it is the inalienable right of good Capitalists Christians to go about their consipcuous consumption hearing only best wishes for their particular holiday while listening to putrid music written specifically for that Holiday. And then Teresa Nielsen-Hayden posted this and I about laughed my ass off (make sure you read the linked translation).

But then, alas (dude, I just almost wrote the french word for alas -- how weird is that?), I read Dan Savage's column today, and was further depressed by his Straight Rights Update, in which he discusses how the American Family Association has been intimidating corporations into pulling ads from gay publications and refusing to sell the morning-after pill; they're also trying to stop approval of an HPV vacine, because apparently cervical cancer is a just punishment for women who have sex.

But then! Warren Ellis updated with this! Never doubt the beauty that is Edison Hate Future. And once you've laughed inappropriatly at all of those (click the tag to see previous EHFs), blame this one on Al: because if you can't make fun of terrorists, the terrorists have won... or something.

Monday, December 12, 2005

I Was Gonna Leave Tookie Alone...

... until I read this: "Without apology and atonement for these senseless and brutal killings, there can be no redemption."

I'm not going to get sanctimonious about the death penalty -- I've no moral high ground there, as I was a huge proponent of it for about two years, even after learning that it has absolutely no deterrant effect. Vengence is a powerful, powerful force; it makes us feel that we have triumphed over evil, that we have captured the devil itself and hanged it in the village square. It scares me now, the seduction that vengence wields.

I'm not going to analyze the history of Williams' case. Some folks hold that the conviction was shoddy; others find this claim laughable. I don't care. The choice for or against clemency is not about declaring the man not-guilty, it's about commuting his sentence to life without parole. Presuming he was rightfully convicted (N.B. this is a generous assumption. The Cali CJ system is notorious for trying the best-known gang members for the worst possible crimes committed in their general vacinity, regardless of evidence), Tookie has done what few in prison are able to do, and that is work to keep others from from following in his footsteps. No one's saying that he shouldn't be punished for the crimes he was convicted of. They're saying that there are others who have done similar crimes, done far fewer good works, and paid with far less than their lives (c.f. John Gotti, other mafia wanks).

No, what I'm really gonna harp on is Arnie's tone in this quote, and throughout his statement. He clearly relishes he role of god, judging from his attitude. He has weighed all of the evidence and found Williams wanting. He sees no atonement in the man's anti-gang crusade, and leads us to believe that a simple apology is all that stands between Tookie Williams and his Maker. For as we have all learned at bible study, you need only ask god's forgiveness to be pardoned. Forget those good deeds -- you gotta kiss up to the big guy if you don't wanna die.

I can't leave the man alone to die on the altar of a false god.

You, Too, Can Read Brokeback Mountain For Free

And I urge you to do so. It's heartbreaking, though, so be warned. And then go see the movie. Because it's more than just "that gay cowboy movie." The story does what few others have bothered with, and that's cast a gay love story with characters that deviate from stereotypical masculine man/feminine man neo-het relations. (OK, it's possible I made up at least one word in that sentence.) At any rate, yay for being different, and yay for daring to make a movie from it. And yay for voting with your dollars for a hollywood that portrays more than just one way of being.

I had shloads more links to blog about, but then Safari crashed and I lost all of my tabs. So, all you get today is gay cowboys (wait, isn't that enough?).

In other news, my last class of the year was fan-fucking-tastic. I loved those students, man, and I'll miss them like crazy -- best bunch I've ever worked with. I also managed to file my degree program last thursday, so that's two huge, wonderful things in one day. It was a lot to take in.

Thankfully (ha) I had a wedding to attend on Saturday, which effectively dragged me back down to earth. If one more absolyte stranger and/or family member either a) chides me for being dateless or b) tries to find a job for me without knowing exactly what a sociology degree IS, I will not be responsible for my actions. No court could convict, I swear, if they saw video of the absolute insistence with which folks tried to "fix" me that night. My sorta-brother suggesting that I was dateless because I don't talk to enough folks my own age (I was hanging with the Mom) was the capper: I was dateless mostly because his brother had sent the invite to my mother and I together! Tacky, Tacky, Tacky. Of course, my favorite Fake Date (tm) lives a bit too far away to appear these days, but I coulda brought in a wringer, I'm sure. Seriously, would it have cost that much more for seperate invites? My mom has a guy, what if he had been in town?

Ok, enough kvetching. I'm working on art (don't ask, it's weird to me too) and grading. I had this weird burst of productivity yesterday, and I'm trying to keep it going as long as possible.

Friday, December 02, 2005

That Motherfucker Better Start Running

1. Re: title of post, the motherfucker in question is someone I once worked for who screwed me over big time and is now harassing me to tell him what he did wrong so that he can once again rationalize it all away as being MY PROBLEM so that his motherfucking bitch ass won't get sacked. Just wrote worlds most rambling email to my advisor. Am now going to finish this post, settle in with my knitting and and a panic pill, and HOPE TO STOP HEARING MY HEART POUND IN MY EARS SOME TIME BEFORE DAWN!!!

2. This was a kick-ass day before I got home and checked my email. Saw people I haven't seen in forever, got to talk about gender and social movements in class, had an absolute blast with my students, and then listened to loud punk rock in my car. I COULDA HAD THE BEST DAY EVER!!!

3. Enough of all that. Have some Captain Jack.

4. Or go read how Rummy got pwn3d by a real military man. Yes, Rummy, it's the responsibility of every service member to stop inhumane treatment. Of anybody.

5. Today (well, yesterday now) was World Aids Day. I saw predictably little being done to raise awareness on campus. Of course, my red sharpie ribbon that I drew on my hand wasn't the least lame observance ever, but it did make people ask me what the hell that was all about. Respect the sharpie, man. Not everyone has ribbon just hanging around.