Thursday, August 31, 2006

Imaginary Conversation with President George W. Bush and Me About Gay Marriage

One Afternoon in the Oval Office

Me: Thank you, Mr. President, for meeting with me.

Bush: You’re welcome, quite welcome.

Me: Now, we can probably agree, Mr. President, that we are fighting in Iraq to bring more freedom abroad, right?

Bush: You said we wouldn’t discuss Iraq – I’ve been reading your Blog. He-he.

Me: Well, I thought that was something we could both agree on.

Bush: Right. Well, yes, we removed a terrible dictator, Saddam Hussein, who used weapons of mass destruction against his own people. Horrible dictator. But we got him. And there’s a safer world because of it. And the Iraqis are more free. Or will be once they stand up so we can sit down.

Me: But if we’re sending our soldiers over there to fight and sometimes die in the name of freedom, why are we holding back the cause of freedom here at home?

Bush: Excuse me?

Me: I’m talking about your support of a federal amendment against same sex marriage. Currently gay couples are denied the freedom to marry – and all the rights and responsibilities that go with that freedom. And you want to enshrine that prohibition into the U.S. Constitution. That’s anti-freedom.

Bush: No, it’s pro-family. The union of a man and a woman is one of our most important institutions. Honored in all cultures and religious faiths. Marriage promotes the welfare of children and the stability of society.

Me: I agree. So why lock me and my partner out of such an important institution?

Bush: I believe marriage is between one man and one woman.

Me: Why?

Bush: That’s the way it’s always been.

Me: You’ve read the Bible, haven’t you, Mr. President?

Bush: I read the Bible and pray to the Lord every day. I’m the guy who said that Jesus was my favorite philosopher.

Me: I heard that. Anyway, have you read Genesis 32:22?

Bush: Not lately.

Me: It says Jacob – you know, Abraham’s grandson to whom God told that the descendents of Abraham would inherit Canaan. Anyway, it says there that Jacob had two wives. So’d his brother Esau. Now God must have thought that was okay, ‘cause He talks a lot about how much He likes Abraham’s descendents. God even changed Jacob’s name to Israel so he’s the namesake for the country and his countrymen. But Jacob’s marriage was not between one man and one woman. And God didn’t seem to care.

Bush: Well, things were different back then…

Me: Exactly! The institution of marriage isn’t immutable…I’m sorry, un-changeable. It changes with society. In fact, Esau’s wives were given to him in exchange for labor he provided for their father. Marriage used to be all about property. It’s changed, now, Mr. President. It’s about love. It’s about providing for children when children are present. And it’s about society supporting the union of two people that will make them more stable and more productive.

Bush: uh…the problem is these activist judges

Me: Excuse me, Mr. President, but – the irony of you using that term aside – these so-called activist judges are making decisions based on litigation brought to them by Americans questioning their denial of rights. It’s the judges’ job to make these decisions – a job given them by our Constitution.

Bush: These activist judges are making decisions the people should make.

Me: I’ll go along with that. I’ve made a decision to marry a man. He wants to marry me. We’re people. We made a decision. But the law won’t let us.

Bush: Legally recognizing your, um, your, relationship with another man would undermine the sanctity of marriage.

Me: Oh, please, Mr. President…straight people don’t need any help from gays in undermining the “sanctity” of marriage. Need I say “Bill Clinton?” “Britney Spears?” And shows like, “who wants to marry a millionaire?”

Bush: Allowing same sex marriage would make it worse.

Me: How and why? Where is your proof?

Bush: It’s a well known fact – and I don’t mean any disrespect to you – that gay people are promiscuous and unstable.

Me: Well, -- oh, hey, Mr. President, that little room right there, off the Oval Office, that’s the private study where Clinton and um, well…?

Bush: Ah, yes. (clears throat) You were saying?

Me: When you married Laura, did the county clerk do a background check on you?

Bush: No, of course not.

Me: Well, assuming for a second that you are right in your sweeping generalization about gay men, which I will address in a minute, why subject us to a higher standard than straights have when getting a marriage license. We allow any straight couple to get married, regardless of their likelihood of fidelity, their ability to be productive members of society and to actually care for their kids. If you’re straight you get a blank check, regardless of your behavior. Yet, here you’re saying gays can’t marry because you assume we behave in a way you don’t approve of. If a philandering gay man cheating on his partner undermines marriage, doesn’t a straight man cheating on his wife? What are you doing about that?

Bush: Well, we…

Me: And, so you’re saying, Bill Clinton’s affairs, excuse me, “problems” in his marriage made you love Laura less.

Bush: Of course not!

Me: And it made you more likely to seduce interns?

Bush: This is getting a little personal, here. No, I would never do anything like that. I brought dignity back to the White House. I love my wife. Nothing is going to change that until the day I go to the Lord.

Me: Amen, brother. Your relationship is none of my business, and forgive me for bringing it up…but I’m glad you’ve affirmed my assumption that the love that led you to make a lifelong commitment to someone isn’t undermined by the actions of someone else. You’re not shallow in that.

Bush: Thank you.

Me: Now, let’s talk about your homophobia.

Bush: Hey, now, I was hoping we could have a good discussion without bitterness or anger.

Me: Oh, so sorry, Mr. President. Um, let’s see; let’s talk about your pre-disposed negative image of an entire class of people that leads you to make decisions that hurts them. Better?

Bush: Yes, thanks. I think.

Me: Mr. President, do you know any gay people?

Bush: Well, I suppose over the years I’ve known a few.

Me: Like that crazy slut, the vice president’s daughter?

Bush: Hey, now, Mary Cheney is a fine person. Laura and I are very fond of her.

Me: So she doesn’t fit the description you used earlier about gay people?

Bush: No, she doesn’t.

Me: Do any of the gay people you’ve known over the years fit that description?

Bush: Now that you mention it…I guess not.

Me: Mr. President, gay people are no different than straight people. We have our champs and chumps. We deserve to be treated the same, no better or worse than anyone else. That’s what this is all about.

Bush: Wait a minute! Children! Marriage is about the children! And gay people don’t have children.

Me: My partner and I have a two-year-old son.

Bush: But that’s artificial.

Me: My turn to say, ‘excuse me?’

Bush: I don’t know how you had a child, but two men can’t have a baby. You had to uh, go get one.

Me: So, what you’re saying is that couples who have kids by means other than giving birth themselves don’t deserve the stability and support of legal marriage, to help that child?

Bush: I don’t think I said that.

Me: But if marriage is only about children – and you defined it as children acquired through the traditional biogenetic birth process, within the marriage – then all the straight couples who adopted or who don’t have kids shouldn’t be married?

Bush: No, I’m just saying marriage assumes there will be kids and it’s for the kids.

Me: Right. And my son deserves no less than to see his parents supported in legal matrimony.

Bush: He could have it; you just need to find the right woman.

Me: There is no “right woman” for me Mr. President. Is there a “right man” for you?

Bush: Well, I think pretty highly of Dick, but I don’t think of him in that way…

Me: Well, there’s something else we agree on, Mr. President! Oh, you meant Cheney. Sorry. But my point was, our society doesn’t expect you to condemn yourself to a lifetime of misery by marrying someone who can’t meet your physical and emotional needs – who can’t help you be happy. That’s what so many gay men have tried --- to hide their gayness inside a sham marriage. If we legalized same sex marriage, you be helping to end those sham arrangements and bring MORE sanctity and honesty to marriage, and help these poor men and women who spend their lives in quiet despair find stability and happiness.

Bush: Can we talk about Iraq?

Best Friend II

While we're indulging in a bit of melancholy in song over Eli not being here, I of course always think of this one.

In fact, when I first got wind of the mom's move to Hawaii by happenstance, that song immediately popped into my head. Story's different. Result is the same.

Wednesday, August 30, 2006

Best Friend

People let me tell you 'bout my best friend,
He's a warm hearted person who'll love me till the end.
People let me tell you bout my best friend,
He's a one boy cuddly toy, my up, my down, my pride and joy.

People let me tell you 'bout him he's so much fun
Whether we're talkin' man to man or whether we're talking son to son.
Cause he's my best friend.
Yes he's my best friend.

My son lives in Hawaii with his mothers. He was here in July. I miss him.


For Jury service in the DC Superior Court. Didn't I just do this?

I've been on two trials in DC, both criminal, one a murder trial and the other an assaulting an officer case. Both trials lasted two weeks. Both resulted in hung juries.

I'm not anxious to serve again. I was frustrated by our inability in both cases to reach a verdict. In the murder trial it was 8-4 guilty. The 4 who voted not guilty failed to offer any rationale other than "the government didn't make a case." Okay, so the physical evidence and eyewitness testimony corroborate each other, how didn't the government make a case? They refused to explain their position. I begged them to, explained why I beleived the guy was guilty, please tell me why you think he's innocent. "The government didn't make a case." It was like watching a White House press briefing. So much for "well and truly trying the facts of the case" as the judge instructed us.

I know I'll get picked. This time, though, I'm going to be the foreman.

How Much for Safety's Sake?

We have lost a lot in our pursuit of safety. In the name of safety, we invaded a country. For safety's sake, we tortured. We imprisoned without cause. And we threw away the key.

The problem with safety as a goal – especially when it’s the only goal – is how safe is safe enough? What other values do you have to sacrifice to be safer?

For safety’s sake we can’t bring liquids on airplanes. Is that enough? Will the xray machines catch smuggled liquids or does every carry on bag need to be searched? Should we be allowing carry on bags at all? How far do we go?

To protect the Capitol building, streets have been closed, Jersey barriers erected and access to many parts of the building restricted. Is that safe enough? Maybe the whole Capitol complex should be closed just to be sure.

Our government is secretly wiretapping Americans to keep us safe. Maybe random searches and seizures would be better. It takes too much time to get a search warrant, better do away with the Fourth Amendment – it’s an impediment to safety.

As a father, I want my son to be safe. I take reasonable precautions – but I can’t absolutely 100 percent guarantee his safety unless I put him in a padded bubble. No freedom. But he’d be safe.

At what point do we cross the same line in the pursuit of national safety? When the stakes are a mushroom cloud or a smallpox outbreak, is any measure of preventive safety too outrageous?

Or, as a freedom loving people, do we accept that even in an age of WMDs we’re not willing to give up our basic freedoms solely in the name of safety? And can we refuse to give in to fears over our safety that lead us to torture and degrade other human beings, even our enemies? Yes, the prohibitions at airports are really just a minor inconvenience and maybe even justified (though I’m skeptical). But torture?

How far are we willing to go in the name of safety? There’s a line somewhere between no liquids on airplanes and waterboarding…and we need to find it. Or we won’t be a society worthy of safekeeping.

9/11 and Clinton -- Who Cares?

Gay Patriot is all excited that a new documentary details the Clinton Administration's failure to act against Bin Laden. At one point the CIA surrounded the house where Bin Ladin was but could not get the Clinton White House to give the go-ahead.

Good to get it on the record for history but as a practical matter, who cares? Bill Clinton is no longer in a position to do harm or good, unlike the two more years we have of Bush.

I supported the President's strategy of pre-emptive strikes against gathering threats. But for that strategy to work you need good intelligence and competent civillian military leadership. We've had neither. The missing WMD that were supposed to be "slam dunk" was a fiction and Katrina gives the lie to Bush Administration competence. Although I think Katrina exposed the failure of all levels of government, including Ray Nagin and Kathleen Blanco, it definately blew away my willingness to give the administration the benefit of the doubt.

And whither the Democrats? Other than Joe Biden, what democratic leader is doing more than criticizing the administration without offering alternatives other than a pull out of Iraq?

The bottom line is: the world is a dangerous place and we don't know what we're doing. Our leaders have failed and the American people have -- thus far -- failed to demand something better.

Tuesday, August 29, 2006

The LTR and Me

From Saturday's party for the poster boys for adorable gay couples.

Courtesy MD

Jefferson on Jesus

I haven’t made a “serious” post in a few days.

Florida Senate candidate Republican Kathleen Harris had a few interesting things to say recently, including:

“That lie we have been told, the separation of church and state,”

She gives voice to the Radical Right’s view that America is a “Christian Nation” and not intended by our founders to be a secular nation.

These assertions are made by a dubious view of history that ignores the complexity of our Founder’s political and religious beliefs.

Take, for example, Thomas Jefferson.

Here’s what Jefferson wrote about Jesus in a 1803 letter to Dr. Benjamin Rush:

“Jesus…His parentage was obscure; his condition poor; his education null; his natural endowments great; his life correct and innocent…

“…the doctrines which he really delivered were defective as a whole, and fragments only of what he did deliver have come to us mutilated, misstated, and often unintelligible.

“They have been still more disfigured by the corruptions of schismatizing followers, who have found an interest in sophisticating and perverting the simple doctrines he taught, by engrafting on them the mysticicms of a Grecian sophist, frittering them into subtleties and obscuring them with jargon…

“The question of his being a member of the Godhead, or in direct communication with it, claimed for him by some of his followers, and denied by others, is foreign to the present view.”

In short, Jefferson viewed Jesus as a great human being who offered a moral philosophy that was perverted by his followers, including the disciples and the church. He clearly did not believe in the infallibility of the Bible and did not believe Jesus was a deity.

As to the claim about the founders did not intend America to be a secular nation, here’s Jefferson in a letter to Elbridge Gerry in 1799:

“I am for freedom of religion and against all maneuvers to bring about a legal ascendancy of one sect over another.”

Poster Boys for Adorable Gay Couple

The Reason They Have Three Day Weekends...

They can't cram all that bad weather in two days.

The LTR and I have a cabin reserved in the mountains and looks like Ernesto is making a bee line to it.

Sunday, August 27, 2006

The LTR's Hair Follies

I shouldn't tell tales out of school, but...

When the LTR hit puberty he didn't get hair where he wanted it (chest) and started losing it where it existed (head). The problem never corrected iteslf and male pattern baldness and a smooth chest was pretty well set in when I met him in our early 20s.

Sometime later, not content with nature, the LTR decided to take matters into his own hands. He applied Rogain to his scalp. Now, the other thing you should know about the LTR's physique is that his skin is extremely sensitive -- a virtual dermatological Alan Alda, or a Al Gore post-Naomi Watts. It wasn't long before his scalp resembled a burnt pepperoni pizza. Because of the skin irritation he had to discontinue the Rogain. Painful scalp -- and no hair growth.

Fast forward several years later...the LTR, flying in the face of experience -- decides to try and do something about the dearth of chest hair. He applies Rogain with a vengence to his barren pecs.

And again, pepperoni city. Only this time, when his pectoral Chernobyl subsided, there was -- viola! -- hair growth!

One problem. Instead of the manly thatch of black hair he hoped for, he got a scraggly swatch of grey.

I told him I thought it was "cute."

Now, when the goal was "manly" achieving only "cute" is akin to aiming for outer space and ending up in Pensacola. Or thinking you're about to kiss Antonio Banderas and then open your eyes to Jose Feliciano.

The LTR was not amused.

So, he's lived for a number of years with the swath of scraggly grey chest hair...until...

Last May (2005) we were scheduled for a trip to Costa Rica. The LTR decided he would enjoy Costa Rica more if his chest boasted a proud manly black thatch of hair. So he bought some hair coloring product at the local drug store, and, ignoring the warning on the package that it was not to be used anywhere on the body OTHER than the head, he applied it liberally to the hair in the center of his chest.

Or course, his skin erupted like Mt. St. Helens. It itched so badly he had to go to the doctor to get an anti-histimine injection. The swelling and redness persisted during our trip. But his chest hair did turn black. Of course, in the center of the crimson skin it looked like someone had painted a bullseye on his chest. Thankfully the Costa Ricans weren't hostile to the hapless Yanquis...And, of course, the black eventually returned to its natural grey hue.

Fast forward to today. I'm in the home office working. He's upstairs in the bedroom "cleaning." A long time passes and he is too quiet. I see him later and I notice that his chest in once again boasting the manly black thatch.

"Did you dye your hair again?" I ask. He looks away and says no in a small voice. "On your mother's life swear you didn't dye your chest hair again." He walked away.

Later in the day his chest gave him away as it turned an all-too-familiar bright crimson. "I tried a different product," he said sheepisly.

As the day and the swelling redness progressed, he said, that, although he would go to the doctor tomorrow to get a shot, he was trying prayer and "the power of thought" to help him heal.

I heard a voice say, "Well, if you'd used the 'power of thought' from the begining you wouldn't be in this mess in the first place." I realized too late the voice belonged to me.

After I finished eating my cold leftovers alone, instead of the planned grilled steak dinner, I sat down to update my blog.

Saturday, August 26, 2006

Bumper Sticker of the Day

Jihad Responsibly

The Cruel Shoes

It was finally time to retire these babies:

The bottom sole was wearing off and there were new "air vents" above my big toe. These babies have trod all over DC, Costa Rica, Hawaii, Illinois, Key West and the Shenandoahs. I think I'll burn them and scatter their ashes at sea.

So, I went to Fleet Feet and bought a brand new pair:

Yes, they're bright orange. I figured they'd help keep me safer in deer season. Besides, if I'm having a mid-life crisis I should be making bolder fashion statements, no?

Hopefully MD won't pull me aside and say, "Honey, why didn't you call me?"

Hot Dog Roll

There has got to be a name for that slinky, teasing back and forth movement one can see in a man's, um, bulge when he's walking or running and wearing loose running shorts without the ah, "proper" support...Suggestions, dear readers?

Have to Re-Tire

Blew another spoke on the bike. Going to see the boys of City Bikes to have the wheel rebuilt. Brian said he would put higher quality titanium spokes in it for me. I'm going when they open at 10 so hopefully I can get the bike back before the end of the day.

Friday, August 25, 2006

Fenty on Education

He wants to create a new deputy mayor for education. Okay, good -- a new layer of bureaucracy. That should work.

International Dilemma of the Day

From the LTR:

The United Nations has announced that it is sending French troops to the Middle East to separate the Israeli Army from the Lebanese Army. This will undoubtedly leave the French with a huge dilemma: Who do they surrender to?

More on Hillary and Ryan White

Gay patriot blogs on the Hil chill on Ryan White re-authorization.

Racist? Nah. Cold political calculus? You bet. Same tired roll over and play dead by certain gay groups too afraid to stand up to their democratic masters? Business as usual...


Blogger has some serious issues with log-ins and I've been locked out all day. It's been very frustrating and Blogger Help Bites the Big One.

Thursday, August 24, 2006

About Teachers (Beth was a Teacher...)

In honor of Beth's birthday, and since Beth was a teacher, we're going to blog about teachers!

In addition to writing about teachers in context of Beth the former teacher, we're also writing about teaching in the context that public education in the Nation's Capitol sucks!

It -- and crime -- should be the deciding factors in the Mayoral election next month.

I went to a lousy high school (it was kind of like this one, but in the 80s), but I had a spattering of great teachers and that made all the difference.

One, Mr. Clover, my English and Brit Lit teacher, loved his topic and was engaging in every class. He taught me to write (to the extent I can) and to that I owe him my livlihood.

Mrs. Dean was my algebra and geometry teacher and she got me focused on a topic I hated with a white hot passion. Yet she seemed to beleive in me and would kick me in the butt when I didn't do well (which in math...)

Both skills are related somehow...Mr. Clover expected his students to contribute to the conversation. Mrs. Dean had standards. You hated letting either one of them down. They were light years ahead of the teachers (like this one) who stood in front of the class and droned on and on until we all turned into zombies as a defense mechanism.

In college I had a share of profs who had the same skills as my good high school teachers, especially my Constitutional Law Prof. Ira Carmen. I would leave a one hour class of his thinking about what he had said for hours or days.

What are the common denominators here?

  • All three were passionate about their subject matter on its own merits
  • All three engaged their students
  • All three had standards

How do you teach these skills? Can you? Will paying people more to teach make them more like my list of great teachers? How can the system support teachers like this and weed out the ones who are the drones?

I don't know the answers to these questions. Sad thing is, I don't think the mayoral candidates do either.

The Beth-O-Mania Continues...

Who's Beth?

Who's Beth?

Today at Scott's Take we're taking time to run a birthday tribute to Scottpal and colleague Beth Smith (not her real name). If you have a Beth birthday wish or bon mot, feel free to post it in the comments section.

Beth is older than me, BTW. WAY older.

She was born in an EARLIER decade.


Beth Smith - new AAD Beth is entering her third year with DCDD. She was graduated Magna cum laude from Concordia College, Moorhead, Minnesota with a BA in Music Education. She has played euphonium in the Bloomington Medalist Community Band, the Minnesota Symphonic Winds, and the Lake Wobegon Brass Band.

Beth was a school band director in the Minneapolis - St. Paul area for 17 years, and was Artistic Director of the Minnesota Freedom Band for four years.

Beth plays trumpet with DCDD and since joining us she has played in most of the DCDD ensembles. Beth served as Brass Coach before being selected as Assistant Artistic Director.

More Beth Birthday Homage!

Happy Birthday Beth!!

Wednesday, August 23, 2006

The Tchaikovsky Suicide Myth

When surfing for the links to the Tchaikovsky symphony I quickly found and rejected various sites that perpatuated the Tchaikovsky suicide myth.

For those not in the know, Tchaikovsky's death has been controversial since he died. The reasons are many, including the fact that he died of a "poor" man's disease -- cholera -- and the fact that shortly before his death he conducted the premiere of his 6th symphony, the dark and anguished "Pathetique." One historian called the symphony his "suicide note."

In the early 1980s, a more detailed account of Tchaikovsky's death surfaced, an account handed down by oral tradition and finally published. There were conflicting accounts, but generally:

Tchaikovsky was having an affair with the nephew or son of someone close to the Tsar. The boy's father found out, threatened to write the Tsar and expose the composer. Since Tchaikovsky was an alumnus of the School of Jurisprudence, his fellow classmates convened a Court of Honor to save scandal befalling the school from the disgrace of one of its promienent graduates. The "Court" handed Tchaikovsky an ultimatum -- kill thyself. Allegedly he then poisoned himself and his family covered it up by making it look like cholera.

This tale plays off the perception that Tchaikovsky was a poor, pathetic, tormented homosexual. It's a portrayal of him that pervades concert program notes, biographies, Web sites and on and on.

And it's all crap.

Here's something you should know about Tchaikovsky that I think is revealing. Shortly before embarking for America in the year before his death, Tchaikovsky's beloved sister died. If I recall correctly, he learned about her death shortly before setting sail. At the time he was composing the Nutcracker ballet and he even wrote of the irony of having to compose music about candy canes and sugar plums as he was mourning the death of his sister.

But compose he did and the music is fresh, sweet, full of childish innocence and gaiety. To write such music at such a time in his life must have taken real inner strength. He wrote this happy music at a time when any human would have been suffering a great sense of loss. Does this sound like a poor, suffering tormented human staggaring under unshakable pathos? Or does it sound like an artist, who, while capable of feeling deeply, had control of his emotions?

New scholarship refutes the suicide court of honor myth. Alexander Poznansky became the first westerner to have full access to the Tchaikovsky archieve at the composer's home in Kiln, Russia, and has provided a great bio of the composer and a documentary book refuting the court of honor myth.

The image of Tchaikovsky as a tormented homosexual has more to do with the biographers' and myth-mongers' view of homosexuality than the truth about Tchaikovsky. These people lived in a time when the view was that it would be impossible to be homosexual and happy. They are the cultural forefathers to those today who say that the gay "lifestyle" can be nothing but disease and death.

In the end, Tchaikovsky reconciled his homosexuality after a struggle, as most of us do, and lived a rich life surrounded by friends and lovers who adored him. He was a classy man who lived and died with elegance and grace. The world often offers gays nothing but ugliness and vile. Tchaikovsky created great beauty in return.

As so many in our community often do.


Today is a Tchaikovsky Sixth Symphony kind of day for some reason. Mostly first movement. Maybe a little bit of the last.

Another reason

To love the band...

Busting all those gay stereptypes....


Looks like the BRB should get back on Atkins...

Clinton Playing Politics with Ryan White and That's Okay

So, HRH wants to hold up Ryan White re-authorization to help her in states she needs to carry to win the White House? She's playing politics with AIDS funding? Not possible!

And still she gets the unabshed support of the community...the Clintons can DO anything but still get blank check gay community support. Bill Clinton gave us Don't Ask Don't Tell and DOMA but because he says the right things and is a Democrat he is okay.

Same phenom with John Kerry -- Someone explain to me the moral difference between George W. Bush and John Kerry on gay marriage. There isn't one...both think marraige is solely for a man and woman, and both would support a constitutional prohibition against people of the same sex getting married. The only difference is jurisdiction -- Bush would ban it federally and Kerry would ban it at the state level. That's a difference only in tactics, not a difference in morality or policy.

And yet Bush is the biggest demon the gay community while Kerry got a pass. Kerry's position is excused because of "politics," that is, "he has to support anti-gay amendments to win." (which, incidentally, he didn't do).

Isn't that the same rationale Karl Rove used? Shouldn't we expect more from the politicians the gay community finances, votes for and fawns over?

Oh, but wait -- they show up at the HRC Annual Dinner. So they're okay.

So HRH's latest move is just par for the course. And so, sadly, is the community's shrug of the shoulders and turning a blind eye.

Tuesday, August 22, 2006

Update on the LTR's Dad

Well, news of the heart attack was a bit premature. The cardiologist today said, no he didn't have a heart attack. His heart is at 60 percent capacity and that is good for his age. His problems in breathing maybe are caused by his meds, which the heart doc adjusted. It was his regular doc who said he had a silent heart attack.

The LTR is much relieved. As am I. Let's hope the adjusted meds do the trick.

So, the LTR's dad's plumbing appears to not be in crisis mode. While the plumbing in our home is. Chris, the hot plumber, will be here tomorrow.

One Time, at Band Camp...

The director cuts loose.

But he was ambushed.


GLAAD's Embarassing Whine

So there's one less gay character on TV this season than last, a fact bemoned by GLAAD as reported in this WashPo article.

Give me a break...Will and Grace was a mildly amusing Sit Com but Will Truman was a shallow, sexless, vain caricature and Jack a stereotypically gay clown. Their absence hardly brings the advancement of gay rights to a shattering halt.

GLAAD's whining is embarassing.

The Marching Band at Pride


Good action shot of acubpella calling roll off

Monday, August 21, 2006


My long term partner, who, has been giving me shit about being referred to as the "LTR" (aka, Long term relationship) met me at the door tonight after band.

One of the outcomes of being in a LTR is that you can "read" your partner easily. Before he even opened the door I knew something was wrong. It was... more plumbing issues. We live in a 100 year old house and lately every plumbing thing that could go wrong has and a new issue popped up tonight.

After the plumbing issue gets, well, dealt with, not resolved, he tells me his dad has had a heart attack. He had it w/out knowing it. A 1/4 of his heart is dead. His dad is in poor health generally.

And, his silver medal from the gay games arrived today.

I feel bad for my LTR. And I am immensely proud of him.


A lot of new folks was good. About 13 newbies. I hope they stick. I'm putting a lot of challenging music in front of them, for them and me. On first reading I'm always a bit panicked stricken about how in the hell we're going to there. My two-beat pattern is still a problem, they always drag in 2 and I'm sure it's me.

So much support from folks. It's a good group.

Is Bush an Idiot?

See for yourself.

Sunday, August 20, 2006

A Failure of Leadership

This at Gaypatriot:

"Our slide to the policies of appeasement and delay, instead of crushing force and demands of unconditional surrender, are actually making the world a much more dangerous place. UN Resolution 1701 is our version of “Peace In Our Time”, circa 1938. The only question is who plays Chamberlain this time: Bush, Rice, Ohlmert or Annan? All of the above is my guess.

But here is the real scary part. There is a good possibility that the Party of Islamic Appeasement will gain control of one or two Houses of the US Congress in November. As Newt said to Sean Hannity yesterday, this is not a political election…. this is an historic election for America.

We could be facing a complete collapse of American resolve and a party dedicated to defending America after it is attacked, not protecting America by taking the fight to the enemies of freedom. Folks, in World War III and that would truly be a major victory for the forces of evil who want to spread Islamic fascism throughout the globe."

Although I agree with much of this, the problem is that the Bush Republican Party is losing its battles against Islamic extremists and the Israelis weren't doing much better in Lebanon.

Both parties, all levels of government, are failing us. Katrina exposed that and now our failure in the Mid East is exposing it too. I hate to be so negative, but there is not much about in the world to foster cheer.

Saturday, August 19, 2006

Bush and Blair at the Gay Bar

Darkstream Dugg shows us Bush and Blair singing about the Gay Bar...

"I see dead publicists..."

He's got grown up child star problems now.

Captiol Pride Symphonic Band Recruiting New Musicians

Open House - Musicians Wanted! - Capitol Pride Symphonic Band - LGBT Friends Making Music Together

Calling all Musicians!

The Capitol Pride Symphonic Band will be starting its fall concert season on Monday, August 21, 2006 at 7 PM (Church of the Reformation, Capital Hill). Rehearsals are open to all musicians (no auditions necessary). You are invited to come and test drive our group!

Please contact our membership chair for more information. Thank you and we hope to see you soon!

For directions to the Church of the Reformation:

Play With Pride!!!

Contact: Membership Chair

Friday, August 18, 2006

William Shatner -- Rocketman

In honor of William Shatner's "roast" on Comedy Central, a bit of Shatner performance art. Like a car crash, you can't look away. What was Bernie Taupin thinking?

"Have you no shred of decency, in you, Kirk?"

Snakes on a Blog

What are We Fighting For?

William Arkin takes on that question in his blog. The Bush admin. is shifting away from the goal of establishing democracy in the failed state of Iraq.

It seems the reason Bush went to war all along was simply to get rid of Saddam. Everything else, WMDs, war on terror, establishing democracy, and the latest reason -- to fight Al Queda -- was window dressing serving as a rationale for going to war. When Bush stood in front of the banner "Mission Accomplished" it was more that a Rovian was the brutal truth. We had removed Saddam. That's all the administration really wanted to accomplish. That's why they had no plan for a post-Saddam Iraq, why they failed to supply enough troops, why they failed to provide security, rebuild infrastructure and keep the country from slipping into civil war.

I bought the Administration's argument hook, line and sinker in the run up to the War. But I now think it was a huge strategic mistake that distracts us from the real threats, like Iran and North Korea.

But at least W. got back at the man who tried to kill his daddy.

Quote of the Day

"But when America is fighting a global war on terror where the battle is for hearts and minds instead of beachheads and landing strips, we need a leader who can explain to friend and foe alike why America is in Iraq, why we keep sending arms to Israel and why liberal democracy really is preferable to Islamic fascism.

Right now, George W. Bush is not that leader."

-- Joe Scarborough

The problem is that it's not just Bush -- all our leaders are failing us. One of the many lessons of Hurricane Katrina was that all levels of government are corrupt and bankrupt of leadership. I don't think the world has been more dangerous at any point of my life than now and we lack the leadership capable of surmounting these challenges.

Wicked Treatment

My band (DCDD's Captiol Pride Symphonic band) is performing selections from Stephen Schwartz's score for the Broadway show Wicked. It's great music and I'm looking forward to conducting it.

In my experience as conductor for DCDD I've found living composers to be quite responsive to questions about their work. Unfortunately Mr. Schwartz is not one of them. An emailed question to him was answered by a snarky, smart-ass reply by his assistant.

My question was this:

Elephaba's motif heard throughout the show (on the words "Unlimited") are the interval of an octave...the same interval as the first two notes of the song "Somewhere Over the Rainbow." The chorus "She's Dead" that opens the show also is an octave. Composers often take song fragments of others to build their own works and I wondered if this were the case here.

Schwartz's assistant's reply to my question was "listen to more than the first two notes and get back to me."

That would have been a good joke had he then gone on and answered my question.

Gregory MacQuire who wrote the book Wicked said somewhere (I wish I could find it) that the name Elphaba -- three syllabols -- is consistent with the three syllabols of Dorothy and even Margaret (Hamilton). If the structure to Elphaba's name could be based that way it's not too out of the pale to think that the first two notes of the motif associated with her in the show is a subtle link to Dorothy's song from the movie.

I love the show and music Wicked...but I do think the ending, however pleasant, is a total cop-out. Elphaba betrays her ideals, the very thing that made her unique. Sneaking off doesn't seem true even to the watered down version of her character that appears on the Broadway stage.

And now I don't think much of the character of Mr. Schwartz's associates.

Not Dead Yet

Sean Bugg reports on the ongoing battle of the gay ages.

Gay culture will likely always be youth-obsessed. But we also lost a generation. The generation ahead of mine was largely erased by the epidemic and only now is there a large, growing cohort of middle-aged queers who aren't willing to go quietly into that good night. In some senses we 40ish guys are charting new ground. And Bugg puts it aptly:

"But the idea that having fun ... is the sole province of the young is simply dunderheaded."

We're here, we're queer, we're 40, get over it.

A Drink AND a Smile

Finally, Dakota Cowgirl has a friendly bartender who puts the happy back into happy hour. Too bad their Web site's incomplete or I'd point out the friendly server...

I always stop and have a few at the Dakota before hitting the W&OD Trail with my bike...

It's Not Just the Bikes

This Washington Post piece takes bikers to task for making the W&OD trail dangerous ...but it's not just bikers who are to blame. As a biking commuter, I've seen pedestrian behavior that is unsafe, including walking three-four abreast blocking the entire trail, walking on the wrong side and wearing Ipods rendering them unable to hear audible warnings of approaching bikes.

Biking the streets of DC, it's also pedestrians I fear most, especially those who pop out between parked SUVs to cross in the middle of the street.

I know bikers aren't angels, but we don't deserve all the blame.

And speaking of the streets of DC...don't even get me started on DC Metro buses...

Thursday, August 17, 2006

B.D. Wong

I knew it. But why didn't anyone tell me?

Gay Cowboys

You'd never know one of them plays a mean flute...

Scared Straights: Homophobia and Insecurity

I don't get straight guys who are homophobic. The guys who seemed so threatened by gays. The existence of straight people doesn't make me quake in my boots and I don't turn squeamish at the sight of an opposite-sex kiss. Some of my best friends are straight. Even my parents are straight! I feel very secure in my sexuality and the fact that the majority of the world thinks straight sex is "normal" doesn't make it normal for me.

But show most straight men the bloodiest, gore-iest scene from a movie and they sit stoically. Show them, say, the kiss between Tom Selleck and Kevin Kline from In and Out and they howl in horror and cover their eyes. When I came out to my father he spent the next several days making comments about women sexually -- thumping his chest in displays of hetero hubris. Somehow his queer son was a threat to his sexuality.

Yes, I suppose we hate what we don't know and fear. But I hate and am afraid of flying, but I don't go around beating up pilots.

Andrew Sullivan's "Dream Ticket"

Sullivan has been blogging that a McCain-Lieberman 2008 White House run would be his idea of a "Dream Ticket" And he writes in the Sunday Times that:

"To complicate matters, and there is no polite way of putting this, Lieberman is sui generis. He is a pompous, self-righteous ass. His moralising and self-importance, his lame performance in the 2000 election (which gave him an even more inflated sense of his own gravitas), and his enmeshment with the Washington establishment, does not fit the mood of a restive electorate."

I'm not sure what to make of this assessment -- I don't see how it supports Sullivan's idea of a dream ticket. Lieberman won't help McCain with his problems with the Republican base and it is doubtful he'd attrack any more Democratic moderates that McCain could probably already have a decent shot of wooing on his own. And, given McCain's age, does Sully really want to put someone he has thus described a heartbeat away from the big job itself?

Bottom line, though, is the fact that for all the hyperventilating and bloviating that goes on regarding veep picks -- the veep selection won't win the White House. It's all up to the top of ticket. The most a veep pick can do is hurt the ticket. It can't really help it.

Sex in the Sauna

I've seen just about everything in the dry sauna at Washington Sports J/O, oral, kissing, nip play. It's almost as eventful as Katie Couric's pajamas.

I understand the married or "bi" guys who use the Sauna as their own bedroom, and perhaps older, lonely men looking for a cheap thrill. What I don't get are the younger, hot, out gay guys who do this. Presumably they could have any guy they wanted. Why use the sauna for anonomous hookups that don't seem to result in the big O? Is it merely the thrill of sex in public?

Of course, I am only an observer...

Fenty's Foul Bedfellow

DC Mayoral candidate Adrian Fenty is keeping curious company. I saw Fenty at Gay Pride in DC, I wonder if Skinner was there. I don't know if Skinner is homophobic, but his use (or at least tacit approval of) of attacks on Council Member Jim Graham's homosexuality is troubling.

I wonder how Fenty really feels about his just another example of pandering to get votes, while privately he's okay with anti-gay humor?

Quote of the Day

"It's been an out-of-body experience to watch these major news events unfold in my pajamas."

--- Katie Couric

Boy, those must be some pajamas

Andrew's Obsession

Can anyone explain why Andrew Sullivan is so obsessed and breathless over Mel Gibson?

First Post

This is a test post. Once we know what we're doing, we'll post for real