From the monthly archives:

October 2010

This has got to be the best week for Sundays in My City hosted by Unknown Mami.

Halloween is our favorite holiday and here are all the reasons why…

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The sun has set. The day is coming to an end. Back to reality people!

As Mr. Monk, my youngest, said to me when I was trying on my wig, again,

“Mom. You need to stop walking around the house wearing wigs.”

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This is today.

I wish I were there. But I am here at home, trying to restore my own sanity, in a very personal, trivial way.

Some dear friends that I have the honor of getting to know were there on the Mall in D.C. witnessing history: Nancy at Mature Landscaping. Renee at Life In the Boomer Lane who actually wrote an excellent post about WHY she was going to the rally.  “Dufmanno” who was there with all her family who traveled from New York, New Jersey and Maryland. I cannot wait to read their recounting of this historical day!

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While we are waiting for our blogosphere personal news reporter to take a breather and share with us their stories, here is the most basic, yet important, piece of information about Rally for Sanity that got me all excited and scream BOOYAH! to the monitor:

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According to CBS, an estimated 215,000 people attended the rally today. This means:

Sanity, 215000. Crazy, 87000.

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Sanity won. Who knew?!

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Jon Stewart’s closing speech deserves to be quoted in full as Rolling Stone has honorably decided to do (Note: You can find a nearly comprehensive transcript of Stewart’s speech on Rolling Stone since they did not want to reduce the 10-minute speech to a mere sound bite. Or you can watch the 12-minute video here). I am however guilty as charged since by Ctrl+C & Ctrl+V I hope to be as close to awesomeness as I possibly could…

There are terrorists and racists and Stalinists and theocrats, but those are titles that must be earned. You must have the resume. Not being able to distinguish between real racists and tea partiers, or real bigots and Juan Williams and Rich Sanchez is an insult — not only to those people, but to the racists themselves, who have put forth the exhausting effort it takes to hate. Just as the inability to distinguish between terrorists and Muslims makes us less safe, not more.

The press is our immune system. If it overreacts to everything we eventually get sicker. And perhaps eczema. Yet, with that being said, I feel good. Strangely, calmly good, because the image of Americans that is reflected back to us by our political and media process is false. It is us through a funhouse mirror, and not the good kind that makes you slim and taller — but the kind where you have a giant forehead and an ass like a pumpkin and one eyeball.

[As a metaphor] These cars… Everyone of the cars that you see is filled with individuals of strong belief and principles they hold dear — often principles and beliefs in direct opposition to their fellow travelers.

And yet these millions of cars must somehow find a way to squeeze one by one into a mile-long, 30-foot wide tunnel carved underneath a mighty river…And they do it. Concession by concession. You go. Then I’ll go. You go, then I’ll go… Sure, at some point there will be a selfish jerk who zips up the shoulder and cuts in at the last minute. But that individual is rare and he is scorned, and he is not hired as an analyst.

Because we know instinctively as a people that if we are to get through the darkness and back into the light we have to work together and the truth is, there will always be darkness.  And sometimes the light at the end of the tunnel isn’t the promised land. Sometimes it’s just New Jersey.  But we do it anyway, together.

If you want to know why I’m here and what I want from you I can only assure you this: you have already given it to me.  You’re presence was what I wanted.  Sanity will always be and has always been in the eye of the beholder.  To see you here today and the kind of people that you are has restored mine.  Thank you.

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here are some of the signs that made me chuckle:

(Sources: HuffPost, National Post, Chicago Press Release)

And, drum roll please, here’s my favorite one, hands down, or inside…

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I was able to watch Saturday Night Life on television (as opposed to on Hulu) tonight while I folded the laundry, as part of my “Restore My Sanity” one-woman rally the eve before Halloween… In the cold open, Joe “The Veep” Biden (as hilariously played by Jason Sudeikis) asked Americans to gain some perspectives by comparing themselves to the Chilean miners. They sang their national anthem every day while trapped underground. They prevailed. And when they were rescued they wrapped themselves in the Chilean flag as if Chile had just won the World Cup.

For people that complain, Biden/Sudeikis has a checklist for them:

Are you above ground?

(Long pause)

That’s it. That’s the only item on the checklist.

Don’t be the whiners. Think of the miners!

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Courtesy: www.maturelandscaping.com

Update: Here’s the post by Nancy at Mature Landscaping about her experience at the Rally. Here is the sign sported by her group. It is awesome.

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Disclaimer: Objects in the mirror are both closer and farther than they appear.

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Preamble: I have no idea what the point of this post is or whether there is any. Except to demonstrate the power of Picnik, the danger of believing in profile pictures in social media (Think Catfish), and the fact I look much better in black and white which is why I secretly long for living in Pleasantville before those stupid kids ruined it for everybody, and I will gladly trade places with Tom Baxter in The Purple Rose of Cairo, incidentally a movie I also watched multiple times hoping Tom would turn and address me directly, “Hey you!”

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For our graduate production, my undergraduate class staged M. Butterfly by David Henry Hwang. The play calls for an Asian man to live in drag, pretending to be a woman and fooling the self-delusional French diplomat (based on a real scandal!) None of our male classmates stepped up to the plate, and therefore we had a woman playing a man playing a woman.

Although I suspect that how we did it due to necessity was not optimal for the theatrical production, I later learned that there is a term for this: Faux Queen, aka Biologically-challenged drag queen, Female female impersonator, or Female impersonator impersonator.

When I was young, I fantasized about dressing up as a man because being a man gives you a lot more freedom (Think Mulan). I wanted to be a swordswoman in one of the Wu Xia novels or movies (Think Crouching Tiger Hidden Dragon), dressed up as a young warrior scholar so I could roam the world and right the wrongs.

To this day I look forward to rainy days before or after it actually rains. It gives me an excuse to walk around with an umbrella.

I was fascinated by Victor Victoria and (still) believe that Julie Andrews looked much better as Victor.

For the majority of my high school career, all girls school, hello! I did behave and dress more towards the male end of the spectrum: closely cropped hair, asexual clothing, and let’s not forget, aviator sunglasses. I was known to make young girls blush when they mistook me for a dashing young man. Well, I was relatively tall and lanky and handsome. In a manga-character-like, pre-sexual, innocent kind of way. For a bunch of high school girls with similar lack of exposure and access to the other sex.

When I said I peaked at the age of 18, until then I had been living an arguably cloistered life, I was not kidding. Being naturally feminine has never been my strong suit. And of course, who’s to say what defines femininity any more, and the distablizing ambiguity suits me fine.

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CODA: You know, I’ve struggled with this post since Monday. Normally if I am having such trouble with the direction I have been going in a post, I’d scratch it. Just as I was ready to give up and start anew some other time, I realized that Monday was the day when I bought my plane tickets home. This rambling on gender roles and prescribed femininity came from my anxiety of going home home next week. As much as I feel unease sometimes in this country, I feel/fear that I stand out like a sore thumb (and to some extent literally since I am tall by the local standard) over there. Oh well. I will be a woman playing a woman. Thespians, we are good at it, eh?

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“I am so happy you’re alive”

October 25, 2010 therapy in session

The most exciting, most surreal, yet most unnerving, and embarrassing part of the evening with David Sedaris (yeah this totally sounds like I spent some intimate hours with him, doesn’t it? THIS is why I have a blog: so I can alter reality with the power of my words) came when, more than half way […]

47 comments

A Night with David Sedaris

October 24, 2010 through the looking glass

When I learned that David Sedaris is on a tour for his new book Squirrel Seeks Chipmunk: A Modest Bestiary, I knew I had to do something. I checked his agent’s website and saw that he would be in Milwaukee, Wisconsin for a book reading, in addition to book signing. Since I did not think […]

33 comments

Reality bites. No. Reality kicked my ass.

October 19, 2010 no manual for parenting

There is no other way around it: I am a hypocrite. Isn’t it an ironic coincidence that after my holier-than-thou tirade against bullying and my immagonnakickyourpunkass battle cry, my 12-year-old son told me tonight that he has been called all sorts of names at school? Names such as gay, nerd, retard. Hurled at him, in […]

50 comments

“Vote for Pedro”: How do you decide who to vote for?

October 18, 2010 imho is just a polite way to say I know you don't give a hoot what I think but I'm going to say it anyway

. On my way to dropping off my 7th grader at the junior high this morning, he asked, out of the blue, “Where do you get a yard sign for the election?” He meant the “Vote for XX” signs that some of our neighbors have started decorating their front lawns with since a couple of […]

53 comments

Wig Out

October 17, 2010 therapy in session

I took a nap today from 2 pm to 4 pm. (Wait. Let me jot down the date for today. On October 17, I TOOK A 2-FUCKING-HOUR NAP, RELATIVELY UNINTERRUPTED, AND WOKE UP ON MY OWN!!!) When I woke up, I was completely disoriented because I thought it was morning. At first I was confused, then I […]

40 comments

I carry your heart with me

October 14, 2010 therapy in session

I have been giving this a lot of thought ever since I started getting readers/commenters who, more often than not, became friends: Why do the relationships I have forged online with people I have never met often feel a lot more authentic, real and immediate than those in real life? This was what Wicked Shawn […]

58 comments

Opening up a can of whupass

October 11, 2010 no manual for parenting

I am fuming. Ok, what’s new, right? But this time it is something personal. It may be trivial but it has consumed me ever since I had the following exchange with my son this past Friday. After a whole weekend of thinking it over and calming down, my anger and indignation has been only stewing […]

30 comments