Friday, January 20, 2006

Experto Credite

This is a particularly weird couple of days I'm coming up on. The 25th anniversary of RR's inauguration this weekend is also the day my mom died, and I'm not sure what it's going to feel like. I never know from year to year what it will feel like... it's as if there's some thin trail of thought in my mind that I'll see her again, that it can't be forever that she's gone. I know in a way, she is still with us, but, how many times have I looked at the calendar backwards to think of how I might have let her know how much I cared for her had I known how little time was left?

25 years? I still see her in my mind, and wonder what she would be like were she alive now. Each time I look into the face of my newest little baby niece or nephew, I think of what she missed, and what they will never know. She would have made one heck of a grandmom. Sigh. I can't quite get my mind wrapped around the idea that it has been this long. My mother's death is part of the swell of feeling inside me that reminds me that I'm approaching my anniversary clean and sober. Almost every week, along every section of Santa Monica Blvd., there will be some reminder of my hitting bottom and getting into recovery... I call it my Twelve Stations of the Cross. Especially when I'm around WeHo, as I can't seem to adjust that I'm now 25 years older than when I first got sober. And the puppies around this town have such a 'Logan's Run' attitude about older people. I don't feel like I'm 25 years older. Most of the time, that is.

I try to use those jarring memories as a part of my meditation, and what I have to be grateful for.

At this morning's meeting, out of over a hundred people, there was only one person with more time than me. The rest of them I've watched come in to AA. It is impossible to describe how many faces scroll by that have been in the rooms that are no longer with us. Some of them, I expect, still, to run into at a meeting, or their ghost is occupying an empty seat
somewhere in the room. There are so many people I think about this time of year who aren't here now, Mom, Dennis, Michael... That I'm still here, when so many others are gone...

A certain columnist is annoyed that GLAAD has called upon the gay and lesbian community to support the mid-season replacement television show, "The Book of Daniel." He did mention that he hadn't even seen the show yet. It should be more than clear that whenever the Focus on the Family or Jerry Falwell, Donald Wildmon or that other fake reverend Lou Sheldon call for a boycott of something, it's gotta be fun, immoral (in their eyes at least), or fattening.

Actually, I watched the first two episodes of the show, and almost laughed myself out of my seat. It is such a clever look at uptight WASP America, I can see where the humor might have hit too close to the bone for the anti-gay fundamentalist right wing. If anyone has their corsets on too tight... But seriously, the show is funny-- and would be even if it didn't have a gay character. The AFA and other rightwing groups have protested about how Christ is depicted on the show. Well, now you know how 90% of the worlds thinks. Visually, they got the blond haired Christ in white flowing robes right out of any Christian school textbook... although the actor has a tendency to sound a little too much like a rock n' roll lovin' slacker. He seriously needs to work on his speech and diction. Other than that, the whole premise of the show as a priest having this very personal relationship one-on-one with Christ is a cool idea that I might not have suspected I'd go for.

If I have a pet peeve about where this year's television season is going, it would be about the gay character on 'Desperate Housewives.' Creator Mark Cherry has been quoted as having modeled Bree and her family after his own upbringing, so if that is the case, the son must be modeled after his own adolescence. It might stand to reason that what he's telling about a hundred million people is that he was a despicable person growing up. He is a gay Republican, after all. I'm holding out hope that the character will have some sort of epiphany and become a more likeable person. As it now stands, the openly gay creator of one of the most popular shows on television has created a thoroughly unlikeable gay character. It really cuts into my being able to enjoy the show.

Another unexpected pleasure among the new mid-season shows was Tom Cavanagh's new show, 'Love Monkey.' Any aficionado of rock and roll will really like the show. Nice little Negro boys ought not to be even able to get most of the classic 60s rock 'n' roll references in the program. It is both an intelligent and funny show--both shows are, in fact. And what's this? One of the members of the posse of the lead
character in 'Love Monkey' is gay but his friends don't know? I guess that goes well with one of the actors on the show being well known around Hollywood for having a closet with an airtight door (oh, but he's married with a kid, so he can't be gay, right?)... Okay, everyone who's ever dated a married man raise your hand. Ooooh, look at all those hands... !

It's like that argument about the existence of bisexuality. True bisexuals --and they do exist, just like fairies-- won't acknowledge that the fence-sitters and those who refuse to come completely out of the closet and deal with who they really are have artificially swelled the number of actual bisexuals.

That some people can be so oblivious to the threat that exists outside the bubble of LA or San Francisco or New York in regard to where people's mindset still is... they seem to think that the conditions that existed in 'Brokeback Mountain' belong to some distant past, and not be aware that for many --many-- people, being out of the closet, or the chance of being happy in their gay skin, or existing safely in their communities is just not an option. That goes for Dan Savage, too.

What is more of an enigma to me these days is Dan Savage's articles. A recent column of his had me in stitches, I laughed so hard. Another one was written with the smug arrogance of a child of privilege that it really worried me, how some folks can take for granted how few people in the world go to bed at night
well fed and feeling safe and secure. I don't know if Dan's getting better on the whole as a writer, or maturing or I'm just getting used to his style of humor. There are times when he's so way off the mark, I almost groan out loud; it's enough to make me not read him for months at a time. Then I'll read something of his that is so right on, it blows me away.

I read several of his recent columns during the road trip up North to the Bay Area, which were closer to the latter. I cut one out and saved it which I meant to mention when I brought him up, but I haven't even finished unpacking yet and have no idea where it is... one of these days, if he's in LA, I'd like to buy him a coffee... as long as he doesn't bring the kid (or the boyfriend).

There is a dance remix of "The Wings" from BM that I heard yesterday for the first time that some people have a problem with. It isn't bad... in fact, it's quite good. I heard it right after I listened to Michael Silverblatt's excellent interview with Annie Proulx on KCRW's "Bookworm." The interview is archived on line and can be found at along with a number of Michael's other recent interviews. It is always a delight to hear author's appreciative response to Michael, as he invariably mentions something that no other interviewer noticed. I should think that English teachers (among others) all over the country ought to listen faithfully to his program. Now that it's on line, there is no excuse for those folks not lucky enough to have his show syndicated
show on the air where they live.

If this weather holds out tomorrow, I guess I will walk the labyrinth at the Malibu United Methodist Church. Since Mom's ashes were sprinkled out at sea, I can sit on the beach afterwards and read in peace, being that it's off season.

No comments: