what it is what it is

From The Advocate Archives: 1969 Article on the Stonewall Riots

June 28 and 29 mark the anniversary of the Stonewall riot, a 1969 event many recognize as central to the gay rights movement of the 1970s and beyond. Editors researching The Advocate archives for the magazine’s forty-fifth anniversary issue came across a piece that appeared in September 1969, reprinted from a summer newsletter of the New York Mattachine Society.

Titled Police Raid on N.Y. Club Sets Off First Gay Riot:

Plainclothes officers entered the [Stonewall Inn] at about 2 a.m., armed with a warrant, and closed the place on grounds of illegal selling of alcohol. Employees were arrested and the customers told to leave. The patrons gathered on the street outside and were joined by other Village residents and visitors to the area.

The police behaved, as is usually the case when they deal with homosexuals, with bad grace, and were reproached by “straight” onlookers. Pennies were thrown at the cops by the crowd, then beer cans, rocks, and even parking meters. The cops retreated inside the bar, which was set afire by the crowd.

The Cow and the Dog (a Fable)

The cow and dog were best friends. They had been close companions for longer than any of the other animals could remember. Even the draft horse was unable to recall a time before this great friendship.

“I am pleased to see such harmony,” the draft horse said, “but it is unusual just the same. No good can come of it.”

The donkey said nothing and continued feeding. He cared only for fodder and pulling his little cart. The barn cat did not speak—she believed herself to be invisible and did not want to reveal her position. The chickens scratched and hopped around the dusty courtyard in front of the stock barn. They didn’t say anything because they are so incredibly small-minded and stupid.

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Your Memorial Day tune: A More Perfect Union (Titus Andronicus)

Memorial Day began as Decoration Day, instituted after the American Civil War to commemorate fallen Union soldiers.

So here is a song for the day. A More Perfect Union. Titus Andronicus. From 2010.

Dharun Ravi

How do you feel about Dharun Ravi’s guilty verdict? Here’s background from the New Yorker, and the recent announcement in the Atlantic.

Politics as Usual

I was thinking this morning about the government gridlock in Washington, but it upset me, so I sat down at the computer to calm myself and look at a few of my favorite sites. The connection ran slower and slower until my browser froze. This made me even angrier. Instead of punching my monitor, I went into the kitchen to have breakfast—I thought it would take my mind off whatever troubled me. The yogurt container was completely empty, which didn’t matter because the refrigerator apparently stopped working last night and all my food was spoiling. I decided to go buy ice in an attempt to save some of the food, but my car wouldn’t start and I had to jump it from a battery charger. The cable was frayed and it gave me a nasty shock. Now I was super-mad. After jumping around for a while, I shook off the tingling sensation in my arm and drove to the convenience store for ice for my food and a bandage for the electrical burn on my hand. I ran out of gas on the way home, because the car’s fuel gauge has been broken for a long time and I can’t afford to keep the tank filled, thanks to the high gas prices those assclowns in Washington seem to be unable to do anything about, which really pisses me off and then my ice melted.

From my site (here)

Anatomy of an Unsafe Abortion

The urologist, whose room I appropriated, blustered and sputtered in behind me. “What the fuck are you doing barging in, I’ve got another case…” but as we moved my patient over to the operating table and he saw the blood, he stopped. He grabbed a tray of instruments and opened. “I’ll be your scrub.”

13 Years After The Phantom Menace

To mark its re-release in 3D, Moviefone asked 13 writers, reporters and critics to reflect back on their experience watching The Phantom Menace for the first time:

We drove home in silence. The first thing I can remember saying was “Well … it looked cool.” The droid army was absolutely intimidating. Yoda didn’t look like a pile of spoiled lunchmeat. And it certainly wasn’t weird that Samuel L. Jackson was on the Jedi council … at all. I had developed Stockholm Syndrome — I’d become a full-fledged Lucas apologist. “No, that was just bad. Really bad.” Kate paused, “And you’re not allowed to pick out any movies anymore.”

Some wounds take longer to heal.


“She took a hammer and smashed my game. Hard, all to bits. It was a punishment.” He sat in the backseat, strapped in, his face to the window. Then his eyes met mine through the rearview mirror. He saw something, a flinch, a startle, maybe. “I deserved it,” he said.  “Really I did.”

Another day, they were laughing. They could have been brothers, the two cutups. We drove past a stand of trees and then it was quiet in the car. “Have you been to that graveyard?” Asking me, this time. I had no idea a cemetery was in that neighorhood, hidden somewhere amid well-tended yards and fine, old houses.

“There’s a little boy’s grave. I go when I’m riding my bike. He died a long time ago, but somebody leaves teddy bears. And cookies and things. On the boy’s birthday? There are always cookies. I don’t touch them.” I asked why he went there. “I like to,” he said. “And it just makes me really sad.” I held my eyes steady, steely straight ahead. I kept clearing my throat. Finally I said all I could say, “It makes me sad too. It’s nice of you to think about him. You know, you are such a good kid.”

We haven’t laid eyes on him in years. But I still can see him, sitting at the grave of a long gone boy. The living keeping  company with the dead.

Nasty Doritos

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