Thursday, October 20, 2005

Dykes to Watch Out For

Piles. We have piles. Piles of papers mostly. Piles of CDs and books, too, of course.

But I sorted a ple of the SF gay papers this weekend, intending to skim them to keep from throwing them out largely unread.

I see the Bay Area Reporter finally has an online presence. Looks like old BARs will fill a shopping bag and go to the recycler.

What about the SF Bay Times? Yup, looks like they're current with the web, too. Maybe I should just read them online, stop bringing home the hardcopy that I eventually have to bag for the curb. But what about Dykes to Watch Out For? I've neglected the strip for months. I have to catch up! ... I suppose I could wait for the trade paperback.

Or I could read it here, huh? (Though I don't like the way the strip gets broken up to fit on the scrolling webpage.)

Then there's the yearworth of New Yorkers. Must. Get. Full. Value.

Monday, October 10, 2005

Death on the Fourth of July

Had the day off today, it being Indigenous People's Day. (Eat your heart out, Columbus.)

Lovely day so I sat outside awhile, ate some leftover pizza I'd toasted and read a few pages from books in my current stack. The one I've spent much of the day reading is David Neiwert's Death on the Fourth of July. Neiwert covered the trial of a young Vietnamese-American man who was being prosecuted for stabbing to death a burly white man 6 inches taller than him. Even the white man's most ardent supporters emphasized the man was spoiling for a fight that night. He had draped a Confederate flag over his shoulders (even though this was in the state of Washington) and swaggered around the convenience store parking lot with his bored buddies shouting racial epithets. The prosecutor brought the law down on one of the victims of a hate crime because he defended himself excessively -- that is, he actually killed the white racist who sought to terrorize him and his companions.

Author Neiwert keeps a blog that I read now & then. This is the first of his books I've read. I find it compelling. In Death on the Fourth of July Neiwert puts the crime in the context of America's history of hate crime, from lynchings in the late 19th Century through the mid-20th to the ongoing anti-gay campaigns of the religious-ideological heirs of the slaveholders. Demonize the Other so you have someone to blame for your own failures.

Saturday, October 01, 2005


I'm almost halfway through the poetry notebook I've been working in.

This is about when I start thinking about a title.

There's a long piece that takes up most of the pages -- it posits a man trapped in a nothing, the word/letter I alone on a blank sheet of paper. The piece doesn't conclude, not unlike many another longish project I've undertaken.

But I've gone on to write several page, page-and-a-half poems.

Until now I hadn't been thinking about titles. I'll run my tongue over a few until the flavor of one overwhelms the others and the only thing left to do is write the title down. I won't decide today. Sometime in the next month maybe.