Monday, June 25, 2007

Another lame pick-up attempt

Bound was amazing last Friday; great bands, good friends (including a few I haven't seen in far too long), a lot of fun. But of course, it had to be spoiled by some loser using one of the worst pick-up lines ever. It wasn't even really a line, just a rambling story from some loser trying to get my attention. He approached me in the bathroom, and asked if he could "tell me a story." I was mildly curious to see where he was going, so I agreed. The parts of what he called a story that I could follow included some friends from Tibet or some other Asian country. When I asked if there was a point to his "story," he said there was, but continued on his apparently aimless path. When I told him I was bored, he said "Enjoy your life" and left. I'm not sure what that was supposed to mean, but at least he left me alone after that. Any guy at Bound who wears baggy jeans and an off-kilter baseball cap like this guy was is going to have a hard time meeting any girl who will pay attention to him, especially with such lame material.
Another thing that pisses me off (yes, it's Monday and I'm in a bad mood): politically, I identify as a liberal, but I hate being categorized through this identification as an overly sensitive member of the PC police, just as I'm sure more socially permissive conservatives resent being lumped in with their more prudish, Bible-thumping counterparts. I have mixed feelings about issues like affirmative action and gun control: does purposely hiring minorities really help them get ahead, or does it just breed more racial strife and the thought that minorities need a helping hand (the same reason I'm on the fence about hate crime legislation)? Maybe there was a time when affirmative action was necessary, but has that time passed? I don't have enough information to be sure. I know banning guns won't stop crime, and people who really want guns will always find a way to get them, legally or illegally. I don't agree with Newt Gingrich's recent assertion that more guns would have stopped the Virginia Tech massacre, and how did such a mentally unstable young man get guns anyway? The shooting was entirely his fault, not the guns, but weapons should be kept out of the hands of people so clearly disturbed. As a blogger friend said about gun-crazy Gingrich, you don't see crimes like Virginia Tech in countries like Sweden or Japan, where gun laws are much stricter. Not everyone who buys a gun uses it for such nefarious purposes, and I'm not about to stop people from hunting, even though I find things like game hunting, with no clear purpose except sport, morally reprehensible. I wouldn't support banning gun ownership altogether, but not only do I find the idea of stockpiling assault weapons in one's home a frightening concept, I don't really see the point. When is an ordinary person going to use an assault weapon? But Americans love guns, something the rest of the world doesn't understand, and some might buy assault weapons just because they can. Heavily armed households frighten me, as does the concept of unfettered capitalism, another American conservative treasured tenet. Corporations, not exactly known for ethical behavior, being given free reign is disturbing. And I don't mind paying taxes, even if a good deal of the money is currently going to abstinence-based sex education and a dead-end war.

Tuesday, June 19, 2007

Reality to Vatican: Are you listening?;_ylt=AmXEPN58baCDWIw4J0qPxwE7Xs8F

The Vatican hates abortion. That has been made abundantly clear. Now they're advocating that their millions of followers withdraw support from Amnesty International, who they claim have been swayed by the evil forces of the pro-choice movement. Actually, Amnesty International doesn't have a public position on this issue, but they do support the fair treatment and safe harboring of women who have had abortions, and the health interests of women, which, to the misogynistic Vatican's dismay, may include a woman's right to have an abortion if she so chooses. So the Catholic Church's problem with Amnesty International isn't so much that they support abortion, but that they don't preach the evils of abortion like Catholic officials do at every opportunity. Some Catholic charities do good work, but I'm always wary of religious groups going to third world countries offering relief. The people in these countries are rarely Christian, and we know how some religious types love to spread their faith, especially in exchange for good deeds. The late Pope John Paul II, for his part, was a vocal opponent of capital punishment and the Iraq war, but he also called the right to choose "the culture of death" and opposed changing church doctrine in any way, even in recognition of women's rights and the changing world. Vatican officials also oppose UNICEF's practice of giving post-conception spermicides to women who have been raped. Terrible, right? Giving aid to traumatized women is unthinkable in Vatican doctrine if it leads to the termination of a pregnancy. Catholics in Los Angeles, in the midst of priests in its diocese finally going on trial for abusing children, are worried that their Hispanic population is going to evangelical churches. Just another organization trying to hold onto its followers, all while preaching a doctrine straight out of the Middle Ages. And my parents wonder why I want nothing to do with this institution.

Monday, June 11, 2007

Birthday weekend is over

I had a great weekend. Bound on Friday, Entre Nous on Saturday, and lots of booze and friends. Todd helped mix me a special drink on Friday, and Azure kept me loaded with champagne shots on Saturday. And on Saturday, I actually saw a guy for a second time when he picked me up at EN. I'm still figuring out if I really like this guy or not, and I met a guy at Bound who I liked but have yet to call. A special thanks to the DJs at Bound and EN for keeping me dancing; Solaris, London and Ms. Panic (aka Erin) at Bound and KC and Larry B. at EN. I think 25 will be a good year.
With another year of my life behind me, I've decided to make a few changes. The first is, I need to get a new job. My current job pays well, and I generally like the people I work with, but the work itself is tedious, shallow and gives me very little satisfaction. That's probably true about almost any regular office job, but I think it's time to move on. I've applied to a couple new publishing positions, and with more experience on my resume, hopefully I'll have more luck getting the jobs I really want, rather than settling for cleaning up corporate bullshit like I do now.

Friday, June 08, 2007

Fake cop arrested;_ylt=AgcKHzcWIqaLjFZRZ57KLwdbIwgF

A man posing as a cop in order to rape women and steal money has been arrested in New York. The story reminded me of the stories of many serial killers who had aspired to be police officers. John Douglas, pioneering FBI criminal profiler, offered an explanation that made a lot of sense. These men want power, power over their victims, over life and death. A police officer, as the imposter in New York illustrates, symbolizes power and is authorized to be violent if the situation calls for it. So it's no wonder that Ted Bundy, Edmund Kemper, Wayne Williams (who, prior to his arrest in the Atlanta Child Murders, had been charged with impersonating a police officer) and Gerald Schaeffer, a former deputy sheriff in Florida who used his position to kidnap and murder several young women, wanted to become members of law enforcement, although they all ended up on the other end of the law and order chase.
In other crime news, Scooter Libby, former aide to Satan (aka Dick Cheney), has been sentenced to 30 months in prison. Any chance he'll serve his entire sentence? And, what will happen to a guy nicknamed Scooter in prison? Also, six foreign men have been charged with a plot to murder US military personnel. Why would they want to turn soldiers into martyrs, and give the US government more ammunition for their paranoid mindset that the rest of the world is out to destroy America? But I guess militants aren't exactly known for logic and common sense.
I recently found out that Vladimir Putin, Russia's current leader, was once a KGB officer, a member of an elite government-leased intimidation squad. With his opponents turning up dead one by one, and his shady past, it makes me wonder. And with his vow to block a planned missle defense shield supported by "President" Bush, US relations with Russia could start cooling again. Whether it cools to the point of another Cold War remains to be seen, and if US military officials and other supporters of the missle defense plan turn up on Putin's hit list.
My birthday celebration kicked off at Chronos last night, but I had to leave early because I started to get tired, and because I had to work today. I had a good time while I was there though: great music (thanks to the DJ who played Leonard Cohen's "The Future"), lots of freaks, and the goddess Bebe, who let me share her birthday party, even though, as expected, she was the star of the night. The one downside, besides having to leave early: some bleach-blond, eyeliner-smeared guy kept trying to come up to me. He approached me once with his arms stretched out, like I was someone he knew, and when I recoiled, he looked surprised. He probably thought I looked like I wasn't having a good time, and decided to take it upon himself to "cheer me up." First of all, it's a goth club, I shouldn't feel out of place for not smiling. Second, I had no idea who this guy was, and a total stranger reaching his arms out to me and standing in front of me waiting for me to respond like I was his best friend is just strange, even for Chronos. On my way out, I heard something amusing. A Five staff member was standing outside talking to someone, who asked "What's it like in there?" The staff member, with a note of disbelief, said, "Like Halloween." That's exactly how we like it. How often in this world do we get to dress up and express ourselves in any way we want? It makes me think of a Twilight Zone-esque alternate universe: Who are the real freaks here?

Monday, June 04, 2007


The AFI Silver Theater in Silver Spring is currently holding, among other events, a Northern Ireland film festival, and yesterday I saw a movie called Middletown. It's the story of a fanatic preacher who comes back to his desolate hometown to rid it of perceived "sin," only to alienate his family, who owns the local pub, in the process. The scariest thing about this preacher, and many other "men of God," is the sense of entitlement he feels, because as a child, the local preacher told him he was "chosen by God" to carry out divine purpose on earth. Even as his family's pub is going under, due in part to his sermons, he doesn't reach out to them, but instead continues his preaching against sin, and when he decides to rid his church home of "decadent" material wealth, he burns it instead of giving it to the many needy citizens of the town, including his brother, whose wife is pregant, and lives in a cramped trailer. Another startling element in the preacher's character is how unhappy he is. He never seems to get any joy out of what he does and isolates himself from the community except on Sundays, but is blindly in the service of an invisible boss. Fanatics who live their life solely for the purpose of buying a spot in heaven after death are rarely happy, and how could they be when they've devoted their present life to the afterlife.
On the personal front, I went out for some pre-birthday partying this past weekend, and had a great time, even though I ran into my two asshole exes. I was pleased with myself at how quickly I forgot them. Also, there's another potential guy in my life, who I met at Bound two weeks ago and saw again when he picked me up at EN last Saturday. Who knows how this one will turn out, and even when a guy says he likes me, from my experience, that's no guarantee that he won't screw me over somewhere down the line. He said he'd be at Bound this Friday for my birthday, and if he doesn't show up, I'll still have my friends to celebrate with me. I'm looking forward to this weekend, and just have to get through the work week.