Monday, December 31, 2007

How Has it Been Permitted

People!

We forgot to come up with a motto for 2008! Oh my goodness. We got, like, 6 and a half hours before it's too late. All of your best-laid plans will gang agley* if you don't help me with this , I promise you.

*Burns, you fucking Philistine

Saturday, December 15, 2007

And Speaking of Fandom

Of interest to perhaps three readers, tops --

Ok, this is why I love it when I am able to trick folks into visiting
The Get Down. Tempest, provacatrix behind the conversation about POC in fantasy I linked to two posts ago commented here and reminded me -- via my extensive cyber-jaunt through her site[s] about Orbital 2008, which Lawd knows I'm mixing my very best rootboxes to try to attend. Of course, your man, China, is one of the featured guests. I just posted on a bb I frequent that his hot socialist ass is still my nemesis, holding strong through 2007 and looking good for the new year. But! I forgot that Neil Gaiman is also going to be blockrocking beats at the Radisson Heathrow next year! Even though I've never clapped eyes on the man , he lives in/near Minneapolis, so the prospect of travelling to London to gladhand him is not firing me up -- not when I feel as if I just spend enough time hanging around the Triple Rock he might show up. Unlikely? Hell yes. But come on. An old punk is still a punk, right? Anyway -- and you better still be with me, hoes -- a quick detour through Gaimania reminded me that I was also kicking around the idea of finally trying to get to Clarion this year. Unlikely? Hell yes. But 2008* is the year for big pimpin and spending cheese, family. Let's all agree to dream big, shall we?




Right. So, where was I?

Right! Triple Rock, Clarion, and then...dang...






Dang. I've forgotten how or why I hyperlinked there, but I ended up at Moorcock's Miscellany, which is where I learned the thing that made me start this post 40 damn minutes ago: there is going to be an Elric of Melnibone movie. Gatdamn. Did everyone else already know about this? And if you did, why didn't you tell me?

Friday, December 14, 2007

For a Reason

Although I can't promise not to use this information against you at some unspecified future date, I'm curious:

If you could only listen to one song for the rest of your life, what would it be?

To be clear, I don't mean that you would be required to listen to said song on 24-hour loop; you could decide when and where you would hear your selection -- but it would be the only song you would ever hear again. In life.

I'm only asking because I've been listening to the same 5 country songs all morning and while I wouldn't choose any of them to be my final ne plus ultra in this particular instance, I'll probably happily have them on repeat for the rest of the day.

For what it's worth, my choice is either "This Woman's Work"* or "Jolene"** or "Lover, You Should Have Come Over" or "God Is Trying to Tell You Something."

* and ** are both notable for being examples of songs in which I [heresy!] prefer remakes to the originals. As much as I love Kate Bush and Dolly Parton, I stan for the opaque grace with which Maxwell imbues "This Woman's Work."



The utterly transcendent Jeff Buckley:



Mindy Smith, manages to do the impossible: she manages to evoke the stark desperation of that song as well as Dolly -- but by making the song sound super creepy. As far as I'm concerned, the unnamed singer of "Jolene" in the Mindy Smith version sounds as she's got blood-stained hands, if you catch my meaning. In the very best tradition of Child ballads, if you ask me.


Video is a bit shit, frankly. As far as I'm concerned, they missed a trick not having some nu-skool David Fincher film it.

And for Fergus, Teri, and every knucklehead in the Horton family who doubts the power of my one-woman Color Purple:



ETA: Those of you [rightly] wondering why there's no Chris Whitley represented on this list should know that I couldn't pick just one song.

Halliburton hit in rape lawsuit

A 22-year-old Texas woman claims she was gang-raped by Halliburton/KBR co-workers in Baghdad, held in a shipping container without food or water for at least a day and warned to keep her mouth shut or lose her job.

read more | digg story

The Default is Faulty

Although I think Bryan [unwisely] gave me posting privileges over at the TNOC Zone, I don't want to just step in and hijack the site without telling him. So I thought that I would post a link here to a very interesting discussion on people of color in fantasy literature.

I'm sure that everyone reading this blog -- including that knucklehead steady googling "street hoes" and ending up here -- knows that I wrote a rather dashing dissertation on race and gender and sexuality in fantasy literature (well, its attendant ephemera, at any rate); so this is a subject quite close to my heart. I'm particularly I2I with the writer who notes that assumption of a default subject position (white, male, straight) is never the default for writers of color, and only rarely so for writers from other marginalized positions. It's something to think about, surely. Why is it that when Tony and I swap "Here's What I'm Working On Now" updates, I always have to make it clear that I'm writing about a black woman/a black man/people of color in general; but it's just assumed by both of us -- because he doesn't say -- that Tony's characters are white? And why is it that I'm made to feel as if my focus -- as a black woman -- on black female characters is somehow solipsistic? I'm not navel-gazing here, but I'm made to feel as if I am. Does Tony feel the same thing when he writes yet another white male character? Thefuckouttahere.

There's a whole discussion we could also have about the nasty sexist undercurrent in the denigration of what's euphemisitically called "Mary Sues,*" but I have neither the time nor the energy to get into it with you hoes. Plus, I have an interview in 45 minutes. Wish me luck, ya bastids.

* I'm not denying the reality of the phenonmemon; I'm suggesting that every heroic female figure in fiction is not simply adolescent wish fulfillment on the part of hysterical women authors.

Wednesday, December 12, 2007

Going Back To Cali

Circumstances dictate that I make an unscheduled trip back to Minneapolis this holiday season. I'm very excited. Even though I only moved to L.A. one month ago, I already miss winter in the twin cities.

Don't start with me. I know that I will be sick of it in a week. But that's why I will be flying right on back to Cali when the disgust sets in.

Tuesday, December 11, 2007

Let My Tongue Cleave to the Roof of My Mouth

My friend, Marie, says that you can't have Saint Jude as your patron saint. I think that is b.s. My whole life is a lost cause! How you gonna deny me the special intercessory might of the patron saint of lost causes, Marie?! Saint Jude and I go back long ways!

Anyway, as any good Catholic can tell you, when you offer a petition to this patron, you do so with the full knowledge of the spiritual exchange that must accompany fulfillment of your desires. That is, one promises "to be ever mindful of this great favor, to always honor [Saint Jude] as ... special and powerful patron, and to gratefully encourage devotion to [him] by publishing this request." To wit, if Saint Jude intercedes for you in your lost cause and you are shown a way out of your troubles, you have to publicize that fact.

As a child, I used to be semi-obsessed withe classified section of our local newspaper. I was especially interested in two things: the personals ads and the sporting goods section (I was always on the look out for an epee or foil -- or indeed, any fencing supplies). But I was mystified and intrigued by the Saint Jude petitions. I had no idea what they were for or to whom they were addressed, but the numbers of people who had spent their hard earned money begging for his aid all seemed to belong to an exclusive club. Amongst the petitions you would occasionally find the requisite publication of success. I have no idea if there were so few because Saint Jude wasn't taking too many calls or if, as penitents are wont to do, the prayerful became the forgetful and simply forgot to thank the saint after their petitions were answered.

There are places on the web [virtual community, we] for the desperate, lonely, and scared to post their petitions and likewise, to publish the outcome. I have used those spaces before. But, I have my own web space and this space works just as well. So...

Thank you, Saint Jude, for prayers answered and help almost despaired of.