HAPPY BIRTHDAY JUSTIN!
Thanks for the laughs, the music, and the memories. And, most of all, for your hot ass self.
Okay, this is a totally self-indulgent moment, but who am I kidding, we are all about self indulgence here at Truly Outrageous. I mean just last night I took myself out to see The Queen, AKA Just Another Bullshit Overrated Movie (although I still love you for Prime Suspect, Helen Mirren. Now and 4eva).
Anyway. My wonderful gay boyfriend Momo has recently joined me here in Bumblefuck, Hawaii, and posted a really hilarious round-up of the sights he’s seen so far. Pretty pictures and witty commentary, who could ask for anything more? Go check it out.
What the hell is this shit, people. Blipster? What ignorant asshole thought this up?
On an evening in December, at Gooski’s, a crowded dive bar in Pittsburgh, Lamont Thomas, sweating through a red T-shirt that read “Black Rock,” played the drums behind the lead singer Chris Kulcsar, who was flinging his skinny frame around the stage, and the guitarist Buddy Akita. The bass player, Lawrence Caswell, dreadlocked and gregarious, introduced the band, a punk quartet from Cleveland with the name This Moment in Black History.
“The funny thing is, a lot of people assume from the name that we’re just white kids being ironic,” Mr. Thomas said.
This may be because their fans, like the ones who attended the show at Gooski’s, tend to be white, although there are usually one or two people of color, Mr. Caswell said.
Nev Brown, a photographer and writer from Brooklyn, said that at the indie rock shows that he has covered for his music blog, FiddleWhileYouBurn.com, he is almost always the only black person in the room. Some fans are curious about why he is at the show and try to talk to him about it.
“And then you get idiots, like people who think you’re a security guard,” he said.
I’m hosting the next Carnival of Feminists here in exactly one week, on February 7. So send me your submissions already! The email addy is ppoussin AT gmail DOT com.
From Save Punalu’u. (Please note: Jacques Cousteau’s son’s name is spelled Jean-Michel Cousteau – I’m not editing the the original alert, but please correct the spelling if you send an email.)
Mahalo for your support of saving Punalu`u — one of the last great open spaces in Hawai`i. As you may know, the developer of the massive Sea Mountain Luxury Housing Development at Punalu`u has enlisted the support of Jean Michele Cousteau, the son of the legendary ocean explorer, to help sell the development as “eco-friendly.” We believe if Mr. Cousteau realizes how many people do not want Punalu`u turned into a luxury housing development he will withdraw from the project.
Jean Michele … stands proudly with financial partners of the Grand Caymen Ritz Carlton Resort that he supported by lending his family’s name to the resort’s “Ritz Kids” Ambassadors of the Environment program. Is this massive structure built right on the beach what Michele considers an eco-friendly resort?
The Sea Mountain Resort he supports at Punalu`u is calling for over 1,000 luxury homes and TWO resorts and 2 acres of retail space! Its time we let Mr. Jean Michele know we do not want a luxury resort and housing development at Punalu`u.
Take a minute and call Jean Michele’s office at Ocean Futures in Santa Barbara, CA and ask him to withdraw his support of the Sea Mountain Development: CALL: 805-899-8899 Extension 102.
Write a letter to Jean Michele and FAX, MAIL or EMAIL it to him today: FAX: 805-899-8898 EMAIL: email@example.com MAIL: Jean Michel Cousteau Ocean Futures Society 325 Chapala Street Santa Barbara, CA 93101
SAMPLE LETTER: (Personalize — and include your return address) Dear Jean Michel Cousteau: Please withdraw your support of the Sea Mountain Luxury Housing Development at Punalu`u on the island of Hawai`i. As a supporter of this development you are contributing to the destruction of one of Hawai`i’s last great open spaces that is home to some of the most endangered animals in the world. Punalu’u has been a living classroom for centuries and if protected, can continue to be an “Eco-Campus” for students and educators from around the world. With public input and community involvement we can create a positive vision that comes from the people of Ka’u who have protected its resources for nearly two thousand years. By creating the Punalu`u Cultural Preserve we can create better jobs through educational and cultural programs. Over 3,000 residents from the island of Hawaii (including over 950 residents from Ka`u), who rely on Punalu`u as an important resource, have already signed the petition to save Punalu`u. They are against the Sea Mountain housing development with over 1,000 luxury homes and two exclusive resorts because if will destroy the natural beauty of Punalu`u – the only public beach park in all of Ka`u. I hope that you will join with the many thousands of people throughout Ka`u and Hawaii, including Hawaii Gov. Linda Lingle, The Office of Hawaiian Affairs, and the Hawaii Department of Land and Natural Resources and support the strongest protection of Punalu`u by withdrawing your support and involvement with the Sea Mountain Development. Sincerely,
Your mission: Pick a Pablo Neruda poem and post it on your blog (with original Spanish, if possible).
Big, big tip o’ the hat to Sylvia for the inspiration! Zuky’s posted one too. And Snuggle Bunny (formerly known as French Boo). And Jack. And Blackamazon. And Kevin. And rabfish. And Blue. And Vox ex Machina.
Ode to My Socks (trans. Robert Bly)
Mara Mori brought me
a pair of socks
which she knitted herself
with her sheepherder’s hands,
two socks as soft as rabbits.
I slipped my feet into them
as if they were two cases
knitted with threads of twilight and goatskin,
my feet were two fish made of wool,
two long sharks
sea blue, shot through
by one golden thread,
two immense blackbirds,
my feet were honored in this way
by these heavenly socks.
They were so handsome for the first time
my feet seemed to me unacceptable
like two decrepit firemen,
firemen unworthy of that woven fire,
of those glowing socks.
Nevertheless, I resisted the sharp temptation
to save them somewhere as schoolboys
as learned men collect
I resisted the mad impulse to put them
in a golden cage and each day give them
birdseed and pieces of pink melon.
Like explorers in the jungle
who hand over the very rare green deer
to the spit and eat it with remorse,
I stretched out my feet and pulled on
the magnificent socks and then my shoes.
The moral of my ode is this:
beauty is twice beauty
and what is good is doubly good
when it is a matter of two socks
made of wool in winter.
In the original Spanish behind the cut. Continue Reading Neruda chain-poem…
Paris, October 1936
From all of this I am the only one who leaves.
From this bench I go away, from my pants,
from my great situation, from my actions,
from my number split side to side,
from all of this I am the only one who leaves.
From the Champs Elysées or as the strange
alley of the Moon makes a turn,
my death goes away, my cradle leaves,
and, surrounded by people, alone, cut loose,
my human resemblance turns around
and dispatches its shadows one by one.
And I move away from everything, since everything
remains to create my alibi:
my shoe, its eyelet, as well as its mud
and even the bend in the elbow
of my own buttoned shirt.
- Cesar Vallejo, translated by Clayton Eshleman
Solstice as Demon Lover
You disappear again, December sun
turns light to ice, fracture
of frozen stars responsible for months
of snow. Now that you’re gone it’s winter:
I can sleep, but don’t. Cold bright
guided me to you: save me
some fragment of its linger. Poured
over glacier meal’s cracked
maps, I stumbled through mist’s
occlusions: now recognize
the face never turned to me, myriad myths
of you. Of course there was a portal
you led through, underworld of
wind-twisted trees. The preoccupation
with endings breaks open, two equal
-ly irregular shreds of cloud: white sky falls
from the rent defining them. Who turns
in this version, fixes me to either side
of mourning? Your heliotrope gaze
turns and I am caught adjusting my sorrow,
among spilled waves and crashing
particles, breaking open the day
to see what it contains. (Look at me
now I’m losing you.) Light-footed
gods traverse the light between the living
and the too-loved dead like echoes
or reflections: the body breaks in two
but walks away. (I pissed my name,
Orpheus, with doubtful penmanship
into the white. I had to
scar it somehow, undo its clean efficiency.
The frost will fecundate another crop
of ghosts.) Cold bells
of breath second the snow, the winter
you became. (Wind again: there is
no sound. You must have a
winter’s mind.) I walked out
of cold hell, mourned well
when you disappeared from view:
same voice, no face, rubbed clean
by renown. I need some music now.
The Power Table
You, lying across the wide bed, vertical,
you, I, in a green field two green paths
flowered with xxxx’s and xxxx’s
you, I, lined inside
with pre-historic quarrels
old black cuts
in a wooden kitchen table
the table where you sit down with your older brothers
the table where things get settled once & for all
the cow’s hip shaved down to the brand
her body divided into zones
Yes I am standing in the doorway
yes my softness & my hardness are filled with a secret light,
but I want world-light
and this-world company.
– Jean Valentine
A.O. Scott has been my favorite NYTimes film critic for a hundred, in part because of the legendary piece of snark (to quote my favorite Bride of Satan, suffer, pun-haters!) that is his review of The Legend of Baggar Vance. Here’s a sampling:
Mr. Smith, speaking in exaggerated Southern black dialect, seems to have strolled out of the last five minutes of Spike Lee’s ”Bamboozled,” a brief, painful anthology of the ways African-American performers have been mocked and demeaned in the movies of the past. His character, with no history and no connections, exists for the sole purpose of serving a white man’s needs.
It might be argued that, like the character played by Michael Clarke Duncan in last year’s death-row fable, ”The Green Mile,” Bagger Vance is not meant to be a real person, but a spiritual emanation, an angel sent to minister to Junuh’s troubled soul. (Apparently black people in Georgia in 1931 had no problems of their own.) But supernatural is not much better than subhuman: Hollywood is still, in the year 2000, disinclined to let black actors play human beings.
Today, Mr. Scott’s snark-sense got a tickle and realized that I needed some real bona-fide condescension to give my bad mood the old what-for. Hence his review of the latest ‘Jude Law is Pretty, and an Asshole’ enterprise, also known as Breaking and Entering.
“Breaking and Entering,” the latest film by Anthony Minghella, climaxes in a welter of apologies. Everyone in London, it seems, has cause for remorse — the burglar, the philanderer, the seamstress, the budding gymnast — and for my part I regret that I lost count of the number of times the words “I’m sorry” were uttered on screen.
In any case, the apology is a notoriously tricky speech act, one that frequently involves expedient self-exculpation rather than a genuine plea for forgiveness from another. And the festival of bad feelings that wraps up Mr. Minghella’s well-intentioned tale of modern miscommunication is clearly meant to soothe rather than to trouble the conscience. A schematic exercise in liberal, privileged guilt — in the tradition of “Crash” and “Grand Canyon,” but without the prepackaged Southern California anomie — “Breaking and Entering” moves through a series of moral and social crises as if they were yoga poses and comes to rest with a smile of virtuous complacency on its face.
HA! And that’s just the first two paragraphs. It gets better, with declarations like ‘I guess the best way for entitled, liberal Englishmen to address the problem of inequality is to sleep their way down the social ladder. Perhaps they should even get a tax deduction for doing so’, and ends with ‘I’m sorry, but it isn’t enough.’
Thank you, A.O. Scott. For everything.