Sunday, June 29, 2008

Series of Boys

Long ago I gave up trying to get a single good "shot" of the kids. I take series, often clicking away when they have no idea.

This is what I get when I ask them to smile for the camera.

No single shot is particularly good, but together, they do tell a story.

Labels: , , , ,

Saturday, June 28, 2008

Women Unite

I am thrilled by Michelle Obama's speech in NYC the other night at the Gay and Lesbian Leadership Council. She used strong words and where I've struggled with Barack Obama's arrogance, I heard her sincerity loud and clear.

Maybe it's because she's a mom, too. I don't know, but I believe her.

After her "I'm finally proud of my country" comment, the handlers have kept Michelle Obama quiet. I hope, deeply, that they stop doing that. Because as a former Clinton supporter, not only do I hear what Michelle Obama says? I think she means it.

I believe the key to swaying the former Hillary Clinton voters lies in Michelle Obama. All those people who say they will stay at home and not vote? They need to hear this woman.

Michelle Obama is not the candidate. But she can swing some voters so turned off by her husband, or so in love with Clinton as a woman, or those thirsty for something more than political pandering.

Staying home, this election? It's not an option. Regardless to how far ahead in any poll Obama may be, when people close the curtain, racism will come alive.

We have to vote, all of us, this November. No one can stay home and pout.

Maybe, just maybe, we have a voice in Michelle Obama.

Besides, you know, we women always have a way to figure it out.

Labels: , , ,

Friday, June 27, 2008

California Marriages in Communities of Color

If for no other reason that to see the diverse groups all gathering to celebrate marriage equality, please watch this video.

Ms. Sen makes a strong point and I agree. Michelle Obama stood up and called for state solutions to equality for gay and lesbian couples last night at the Gay and Lesbian Leadership Council, highlighting again the strength we can achieve when we work together.

Communities of Color are not the bastions of homophobia. It is a myth perpetuated by those in power to stay in power.

Labels: , , , ,

Thursday, June 26, 2008

Frog's Legs

I am a mean mother. I make my kids go to nice restaurants, learn which fork to use, to put their napkins in their laps and god help me, put butter on the butter plate, not right on the roll.

I believe in manners.

And trying new food. I don't care if you eat it all, just try it. Tonight? Zachary did. With his Garlic Cream Soup he was served Frogs Legs. Fried, to dip in the soup.

He did.

He loved it.

I can die now, a very very proud mother.

Wednesday, June 25, 2008

New York, New York

We're fresh from a carriage ride around Central Park, and some lovely beverages.

Jeanine and I are in NYC with the boys. A couples days of fun and I'm not writing.

I'm not writing about how thrilled I am Michelle Obama is going to a queer event in NYC, right around the corner from where we are, tomorrow night. I love Michelle. I'm worried someone is going to stop her from being who she is.

She gets my 100% thumbs up.

Oh, stop being surprised. I want Obama to win.

She'll be going that way, and I'll be going... um.. that way. To Spamalot.

Labels: , ,

Tuesday, June 24, 2008

American, First and Foremost

A recent response to me, personally, was that I was being selfish and narcissistic for pressuring the Obama campaign about marriage equality.

He said he was an American first and foremost.

Aside from my clearly narcissistic need to clear up the discussion- I was merely asking Obama to not get on national television to tout his “one man one woman” political pandering and then have the nerve to release a long “Obama Pride” video with snippets from speeches where he panders to the LGBT community. Personally, I was insulted. I didn’t ask for something outrageous in the form of acknowledging the historic move toward civil rights for lesbians and gays in this country.

Far from it. I simply asked for a ‘no comment’ and move on to the next topic. A video isn’t going to appease me. I don’t want anything other than to be heard by MY candidate.

I agree, with my critic, that we must be Americans first and foremost. I agree that there are issues much larger than my civil rights as a lesbian in this country. Personally, the war alone is an issue that is enough to cause the entire country concern. The economic turmoil, the sub prime crisis and the subsequent loss of homes for so many in urban, poor locals across the country. The list goes on and on.

People from all walks of life have taken to the streets, been active in their first campaign, have become politically aware for the first time. It’s amazing to see. Some are there for economic issues, some health care, some women’s rights, some public education- some simply because it is a historic time.

How many are there for LGBT rights?

This is where I disagree with my critic. The squeaky wheel gets the grease. To sit back quietly and put our issues on the back burner will only allow us to continue to be taken for granted.

Is that narcissistic? Sure. Fine. I don’t really know but since I’m completely narcissistic, I’ll own it. But the point is, who out there is going to take up my banner?

No one.

I cannot fathom what McCain will do to this country. It is beyond frightening to me. Continued war, ridiculous tax cuts and insurmountable debt is only the first layer- then the Supreme Court, other judicial appointments, foreign policy reliance on might rather than negotiation… it honestly makes me want to cry. I am supporting Obama for President.

But don’t ask me to stop pushing for my civil rights. This is the single most accessible time to get to a President to be- to get him or her to listen. To have your issues be understood. Once they take office, policy gets set and I want LGBT issues to be high on the list.

Not first, but high on the list.

Yes, America is more important than me. I believe Obama will win the presidency because the country is desperate for change.

And I will be heard along the way. Does that make me un-American?

Monday, June 23, 2008

Power In Numbers

My piece, Power in Numbers- The Gay Vote, is on

Sunday, June 22, 2008

Language is Powerful

I heard a great interview the other week (look for "gay marriage redux") by Julie Goodridge, one of the lead plaintiffs of the historic MA ruling. Great interview, please listen.

But I have one thing to say to everyone. Language is powerful.

It's not gay marriage. That was a term decided on by the right wing efforts to paint equal access as a 'special right.'

It's not. It's about marriage equality. It's about two people being able to get a marriage license. You can't limit it to only white people, you can't limit it to only same racial background and you can't limit it based on the gender of the two people applying.


Every time we say "gay marriage?" think "partial birth abortion," another term created (and not even remotely true) to influence those on the edge of the discussion.

It's about a legal institution- marriage- and access to it.

It's about equality because as we all know, separate is never equal.

Ah, there goes that language again. Words creating a powerful image.

Labels: , , , ,

Saturday, June 21, 2008


Friday, June 20, 2008

McCain, McCain, McCain

Oh, Johnny, what have you gotten away with now?

Just so you know, McCain did, in fact, say that about his wife in front of a group of reporters. That isn't a joke, it's the truth.

Makes you wonder what he thinks about women in general, now doesn't it?

THANK YOU, Bil, for sending this to me. Now everyone go click on Bil's site so he doesn't yell at me.

Labels: , ,

Thursday, June 19, 2008

Mrs. Cowen-Whitman

For the first time today, I was called Mrs. Cowen-Whitman.

More than once.

It was the last day of school and the kids all wanted to go to Tom's Pizza. We went and as I stood in line to order, I heard a small voice.

Hey... Mrs... Mrs. Cowen-Whitman.

I turned. It was a friend of Ben's who I have know since he was a kindergartner.

Hey, sweetie, I said. I reached over and grabbed his shoulder. then finished ordering.

A few other kids said Hello. They all called me Mrs. Cowen-Whitman. It was a little strange. I'm used to Ben's mom. Zach's mom. Jake's mom. I'm used to a simple "hey."

For an institution mired in patriarchal privilege, I must say, marriage has it's benefits. If nothing else, the younger generation sees me as just as married, just as boring, and just as deserving of respect as any heterosexual parent.

Mrs. Cowen-Whitman was a little strange.

But mostly? Nice.

Labels: , , ,

Wednesday, June 18, 2008

How Low Will You Go?

In Massachusetts, we have had a few great success stories around marriage equality in our state. Not just the beautiful weddings, pictures, celebrations but real, serious, political gain.

We booted out of office people who said they were anti-marriage and elected fresh new faces like Carl Sciortino.

In 2004, Carl went to his State Rep's office and asked his position on marriage. One man, one woman, get out was the answer. Carl decided it was time for a change of Representation and ran for office.

In November of 2004, he won. Unknown, no name recognition, he won. He is one of the few openly gay members of our state legsilature.

I could go on and on about the things Rep. Sciortino has accomplished in office- but I'll let his resume speak for itself.

This year, as he prepared to run for office, he collected the signatures needed to be on the ballot. Nothing new, just the basics of running a campaign, right?

Sciortino left his certified signatures in his office at the State House overnight- signatures that were to be handed in the next day.

When he returned in the morning? They were gone. Stolen. Nothing can be proven but... the signatures were gone.

After several hearings, affidavits saying there were in fact signatures, a judge threw it out and said, Too bad.

Rep. Sciortino is running a sticker/write in campaign. Anyone familiar with campaigns know that this is expensive and difficult to win.

It begs the question... how low will you go to win?

I'm not accusing anyone. At all. Not enough proof.

If anyone wants to help Rep. Sciortino keep his seat, please click here or contact me directly.

Labels: , ,

Shut The Hell Up

If I hear "Marriage is between one man and one woman" one more time from Obama's mouth- or any Democrats mouth- I'm going to scream. Last night, while being questioned on California's decision, Obama just had to say it. One man, one woman.

How is this change? Leadership? Hope?

Or do only straight people get to hope?

As historical as having an African-American man run for the highest office in this nation is, it is not the only history being made today. The fact that the second state in this country- and a fairly BIG state- has laid claim to the belief that SEPARATE IS NOT EQUAL is just as historically significant.

Imagine that. Two states. More to follow. You can call Massachusetts a fluke but you simply can't ignore California, now can you?

I am sick of people telling me I should be more concerned with other issues- as if I'm not. Please. I can hold more than one thought in my head at a time. I care about the war. I care deeply that we get a democrat in office- McCain is a nightmare. The list goes on and on.



You know, someone should mention to Senator Obama he could simply say, Marriage is for the states to decide. I'm running for a federal office.

Then shut the hell up. Next issue.

Labels: , , , , ,

Tuesday, June 17, 2008

John McCain: Conservatives Delight

Seems Johnny Prozac loves to keep the women barefoot and pregnant.

Please, don't ever confuse him with someone who cares about women's rights. I don't care how many times he talks to Ellen on national TV.

They All Have Names

I need some help with a problem I've had for the last couple months. I'm a little embarrassed to admit it but... I have a large trash bag (as in contractor size) of stuffed animals I cannot throw away.

I can't. They have names.

These are stuffed animals the boys have voluntarily decided to toss. When there were more animals per square inch of bed than boy, I suggested a thinning of the herd. Surprisingly, the boys were fine with it.

I'm not.

In my upstairs hallway, sits an enormous bag of no longer loved, plush, cute little- and some not so little- former friends. A friend of mine once told me a story about how he, in response to his son being afraid of the dark, had arranged his sons stuffed animals to be "on guard." I loved the idea and did the same with my boys.

Not only once loved, but also once fierce protectors of all that goes bump in the night.

I can't donate them. No one will take them because they pose a health risk.

What do I do? It's not as if the boys don't have plenty- and I mean plenty- of others they have decided to keep. You might think I'm kidding but I'm not. I honestly cannot throw these away.

Maybe I should have Jeanine do it when I'm not here. Oddly, the woman who cannot part with her band jacket from college or tee shirt from high school- neither of which have fit for years- chuckles at me when I describe my angst.

I keep coming back to the same thing. They have names. I can't tie the top and heave it on the sidewalk for the trash guys.

What to do?

Labels: , , ,

Monday, June 16, 2008

Four More Days...

From early May to the last day of school in June, life in suburbia runs at a frantic pace. Between little league, class parties, final camp decisions on top of everyday life- dentist/orthodontist, laundry, groceries, school, house, cars- I don't know how I get anything done.

The weekend was Pride, Jake's final baseball game and picnic, a birthday invitation delivered at that game for later that day, an exploding bottle of Diet Coke, friends for dinner- and that was Saturday.

Sunday was Father's day- which meant getting the boys to actually make cards for Walter and Allan, let alone help with the 'brunch' they decided to have for them. When I told Zachary he had the fork on the wrong side of the plate, he started rolling on the floor, yelling that he couldn't do it! After brunch, Zachary's playoff baseball game, drop Ben off and pick him up from a friends house, take Jake to tryouts for fall soccer- yes, fall soccer.

And then the regular work of Sunday before the week- laundry, garbage out to the street, clean the refrigerator, cook dinner and discuss the playoff game loss with Zachary.

Don't forget the Celtics game that started at 9PM.

I'm whupped. I'm so tired. Four more days to go and a million more miles, it seems. Each day, except today, has a school event of some sort- or two. The kids are wired for sound, bouncing up and down at 7:50AM this morning begging to go to school- the doors don't open till 8:20AM.

I need a day without a schedule.

I need a day without dentists, or concerts, or baseball games.

I need a day without having to remember who belongs where and what time they have to get there, when they need to be picked up and what they have to have with them.

I need a day where we can all hang at the dinner table without somewhere to go.

I need a day where I don't have to get in my car. And not have to order pizza as a result.

I need a day without laundry or towels or sheets or something dirty that must be cleaned for a game or event or just because it's been so hot it smells bad.

I need a day.

And I'm almost there.

Labels: , , , ,

Sunday, June 15, 2008

What Are Your Children Doing?

As I marched to demonstrate my pride, my sons and friend were home being supervised while playing in the road.

Yes, the deep voice in the background is Walter, making sure they were not hit by a car.

I think.

Saturday, June 14, 2008

Pride Parade

This year, Governor Deval Patrick marched with his daughter, Katherine, in the Gay Pride Parade.

I have been told it is the first time a Governor has done so. I cannot verify it but as we all said today, if it's in the Boston Globe, it's good enough for us.

Labels: , , ,

Friday, June 13, 2008

Middle School Picnic

I was allowed- and yes, I do mean allowed- to go to Ben's middle school picnic today for his "team" at school. The 6th grade is divided into three teams- Yellow, Orange and Red.

Ben is on Orange and today was a day at a park very close to our house for a BBQ and hanging out in the sun. Parents were asked to volunteer to bring some of the extras- sodas, chips, desserts- and come by if they wanted.

I signed up for sodas and stopping by. Ben looked at the slip and said, NO WAY.

Oh, come on, I won't talk to any of your friends.


ONLY if you bring soda and PROMISE not to talk to me at all.



I know. Got it. I'll chat with the teachers.

He was a bundle of nerves last night but managed to not get in too serious of trouble. This morning, the soda list was given to me along with the reminder not to talk to him.

Got it.

After witnessing what felt like genetic-pituitary madness, I decided Middle School is the single most awkward time of your life. There was one boy who was over 6 feet tall and several of the girls who were barely over 4 feet tall. Boys who were all bones and limbs, and girls who were so filled out I wasn't sure if they were students or classroom aides.

Until they started to talk and then I knew the familiar lilt of sassy-knowitall- obnoxiousness that only comes from a 12 year old.

Not a single one of the 80 kids were even remotely comfortable with their bodies. They moved as if they were only half under control of the steaming pit of hormones inside them.

There were the quiet girls who brought books to read- they broke my heart. I remember being painfully shy. There were the table of mean girls- you knew they were tearing everyone apart, laughing at people and completely full of themselves. Tough boys, a few terribly shy boys who didn't even bring books to read but wandered around the edges watching.

The one new twist from when I was in middle school was the sports playing. It was completely co-ed, girls and boys playing basketball, baseball. In my day, I was almost always the only girl who played ball. It was great to see.

I helped set up the table for food. I chatted with teachers and other parents. Ben was not to be seen.

After lunch, he came up to me. Mom, bring Beanie.


Bring Beanie over.

How would you ask that?

Please... please bring Beanie over.


I was amazed he spoke to me so I went to get the dog. I did a few things around the house- dishes put away, folded a load of laundry- and Ben called me.

Mom... where are you?

On my way.

Recently, it's been clear that having parents- especially gay parents- is mortifying for Ben. He's uncomfortable with it and I'm guessing most of his new friends do not know. It's why he didn't want me to go in the first place.

It was nice to have him call and want me there.

Okay, he wanted the dog there, not me.

Beanie and I arrived. Ben ran over to get her leash and immediately became the center of attention. The shy girls put their books down and came and pet her. The awkward boys ran over to pet her. Ask her name. What kind of dog is she...

Mom... what kind of dog is she again?

He spoke to me in front of his friends. Whoa.

Golden mixed. She's a little of everything.

I was called into action when she did her business on the field- picking up poop seems to be one of my callings in life. Other than that, I went and sat on a shady bench.

Eventually, Ben tired of parading Beanie around and brought her over to me. The kids, however, didn't tire of petting the dog and asking questions. She is so demure and gentle even the most timid kids made it over at least once.

Watching those kids today gave me a new sense of empathy for Ben. The girl he used to "date" hounded him relentlessly around the yard. His buddy he's known forever- a goofy boy whose body is being completely driven by sugar and impulse with no volume control- danced around him suggesting a million different things to do.

He kept it all together, remaining cool, aloof and annoyed by everything and everyone. I know his fears about being different, not fitting in, desperately wishing he was like everyone else. A storm of uncertainly brews inside him and he is only just beginning to learn how do deal with it.

On the outside, today? He pulled it off masterfully.

And if you're ever feeling old, fat, insecure, unsure, or generally pathetic? Go to a Middle School at the end of the day and watch the kids file out.

If nothing else, it'll give you a little perspective.

Labels: , , , , , ,

Thursday, June 12, 2008

Technology Serf

I have some stunning technology in my house. At my party, my big screen TV that floats on the wall displayed photos through Apple TV.

Very very cool. All my photos of the kids, different things, over the years, changing, flipping- everyone loved it.

How did you do that?

I smiled. I didn't do it. It was Jeanine.

Truth be told, I can't turn on my TV without help. If the universal remote she bought me with the "watch cable" button to push isn't working? I have to ask the kids.

We're about to watch the Celtics. I pushed the button.

Didn't work.

Jeanine started to explain what to do.

I threw her the remote.

You need to learn, she said.

No I don't.

What do you do if I'm not here?

I get mad. At you. And then I ask the kids.

I don't want you to get mad at me.

I shrugged. I am never going to be technology Queen. Not even a Princess. Me? I'm pretty much a serf. If I can't press a single button to make it go? I give up.

And get mad at Jeanine.
My friend Sue at Nailing Jello to the Wall has a running counter of plastic bags used THIS YEAR. The number flies by so fast it makes me sick.

I'd like to follow up with a piece about the Dangers of Plastic Bags.

Great music by Melissa Etheridge.

I have always been somewhat green. Jeanine, my wife, has always been wildly green. Now.. it's about my kids.

Boston is in line to be the next city to ban plastic bags. I hope so.

Labels: , , ,

Wednesday, June 11, 2008

Long Day...

It's been a long day, I'm just getting home and I'm too tired to write.

So I leave you with some news from my favorite source, The Onion.

Controversial Court Ruling Upholds Homosexual's Right To Prance Around Demanding Attention And Being A Drama Queen

HARTFORD, CT—The Connecticut Supreme Court on Monday upheld the right of individuals, regardless of sexual orientation, to engage in any number of "grandiose behaviors," including, but not limited to, sashaying across the room "like a hussy, yelling 'Oh my God!' at the top of their lungs while hopping up and down, and generally acting like Miss Thing."

For more on this top story, please click here.

Tuesday, June 10, 2008

Sam Nunn? You Gotta Be Kidding.

While everyone points fingers to Senator Clinton's supporters as the downfall of the Democratic party, I'd like to point out Obama's efforts to undermine our effort.

Sam Nunn.

Jim Johnson, new to the VP search committee, is a huge fan of Sam Nunn's. You know Sam Nunn, the anti-gay architect of Don't Ask Don't Tell, Board member of such profit at any cost companies such as Coca-Cola, Chevron, Dell, General Electric, Internet Security Systems, Scientific-Atlanta, Texaco.

I don't want even mention the membership to Augusta- no Chicks, no Blacks, no Jews and certainly no Homosexuals allowed- National Golf Club.

I need Senator Obama to take Nunn's name off the short list.



Because if he doesn't? There is no way in hell he can blame Senator Clinton for that giant fuck up. It will be his own.

Labels: , , ,

The Glass Ceiling: 18 Million Cracks and Counting

In Senator Clinton’s speech on Saturday, when she gave up her place in the race for President and gave her support to Senator Obama, she mentioned not having broken the “glass ceiling.”

But she had made “18 million cracks in it.”

I’ve thought a lot about Clinton’s speech- at least what I’ve read, the clips I’ve seen. I could not watch it. It made me too sad. I believe she was the stronger and better of the candidates. I believe she was electable.

Mostly, though? She was a woman. As my friend said to me when I was considering who to vote for, whom to support, you’ve waited your whole life to see a woman in this place.

I have.

As a kid, I never understood why women or girls were treated differently. I could throw just as far and spit just as well. I knew when my mother would say girls don’t do that… if I asked why… I was fortunate in that she thought about it and if she couldn’t come up with an answer that made any sense, she let me do it.

As a young woman, I found myself bound by gender definitions that did not fit me. While it was acceptable to be a ‘tom boy’ as a girl, growing into adulthood, the expectations came crashing down on me. As I reached puberty, I was to be more feminine. I was expected to wear make up. I was expected to wear dresses in certain social situations. In my first job after college, my review included a note to be more feminine in appearance. My work was exceptional- but they requested more skirts, perhaps some heels.

I was a catering manager. I worked 12-hour days on my feet. Heels?

While my fellow co-worker, who wore the same suit day in and day out, with comfortable shoes, received a glowing review.

It didn’t matter how he looked as long as he was neat. Groomed.

I was neat and groomed. I wore tailored women’s suits- just with pants instead of skirts. It wasn’t good enough.

I began to see how the world was made to fit men. Silly things, like the fact that our zippers are on the side or in the back of our clothes. More serious things like our legal rights to decide about our bodies being defined by government.

Can you image laws protecting sperm?

Why not?

Because, as I’ve found over and over again in my life, the gender roles women have been assigned are to keep power firmly in the hands of men.

As a parent, I have become keenly aware of gender roles and identification. Raising three boys, I see how being labeled “feminine” or in any way female is a disgrace to them. Sissy, wimp, Nancy boy… all references to a male as being less than, not good enough.

All references to a male being female.


After all, women can give birth, heal in a short period of time, and feed a human infant for up to a year without anything but her body.

Is that a definition of weakness? Or power?

Why is it okay to call a woman a bitch, to comment on her clothes, laugh and hairstyle instead of taking her seriously as a candidate? Or worse- making it part of the serious discussion or her as a candidate?

Why did my son tell me, Mom, Clinton will never win. She’s a woman.

At 12 years old.

Girls may outperform boys in schools but the lessons being taught are far from anything we want our girls to learn. Just as a system that creates a 70% failure rate in African American boys has been successfully designed to fail those children, a system that sends girls out into the world with straight A’s only to face from boardroom to courtroom, from pregnancy to contraception, from unequal pay to domestic violence, being handed the short end of the stick.

How do we dissect what is being taught to girls? And boys? How do we look at the gender role creation in our society? How do we evaluate all of our lives with a gender lens?

As I said to a friend yesterday, it’s not simply about sexism. It’s not only about the negative images but also about what are we reinforcing as positive behavior. Why are girls getting “good grades” and still unable to break through glass ceilings? How is our educational system failing girls?

And in turn, failing boys?

Personally, I don’t want women’s power to be defined as what a white man has. I don’t want that- it’s only led to haves and have nots, war and caste systems that have served no one but the master on top. Women are more intuitive, creative and linear is only something you hang laundry on outside. We value our children and instinctively move to protect them, protect the future of humanity. We move in public and private roles, often at great cost.

We must do more, be more conscious and question the roles we learn at 3, 4 and 5 years old. Gender is not biological but a social construct. We must find a way to teach our girls and boys the value of women’s roles and the power behind them. We must flip the images on their side and reconsider what they mean.

Because, clearly, 18 million cracks in the glass ceiling is not enough to crash it down.

Labels: , , , , , , ,

Monday, June 09, 2008


It is funny what evokes a long ago image. An instant of flavor, or smell or the way the sun is setting in the sky. It's never expected, and as I have learned in the last few years, sometimes welcomed, sometimes not.

Yesterday, it was the saltine crackers Ben pulled out.

I haven't had saltines since I was pregnant. Miserable, nauseous, I chipped away at saltines while wetting my lips with Ginger Ale. It was one of the few times in my life food was absolutely the last thing I wanted to be around.

I remember being in my office at the software company with those crackers and getting a phone call from a woman who was looking to start a support group for pregnant lesbians. My name had been given as a contact, something I did not remember signing up for.

It was the beginning of the moms group I hold as my family today. Thirteen years and ten kids later, we're still at it.

I remember my mother and how she would make careful little sandwiches with saltines. She'd spread peanut butter on one cracker, jelly on another and hand them to me to press together.

The jelly oozed out of the tiny holes signaling the perfect pressure. The extra salt on the cracker made it ever so slightly a savory snack rather than sweet. Finger sandwiches for the seven and under set, although she always had a few herself.

A simple box of Saltines on a hot day when having your mind move from one image to the next is enough to break a sweat.

Labels: , , , ,

Saturday, June 07, 2008

Low Tide

Activa Yogurt

Ben and I are in Ogunquit this weekend. Just hanging out. We went to the store to fill the refrigerator.

Mom, let's get this yogurt, Ben said, pulling off a package of Activa Yogurt. My health teacher gave us some and it was very tasty.

It is a healthy choice but all I could think of was this skit from SNL.

Thursday, June 05, 2008

Bob Barr, Not Babar...

Class and Kevin Garnett

If you're looking for a long discussion about VP choices or the rally this Saturday in DC where Clinton will announce her support of Obama's campaign, you'll have to wait till tomorrow.

Tonight, Game 1 of the Celtics/Lakers. I was discussing the game and players with several people today. A friend said he was a huge Paul Pierce fan but he could tell I was a Garnett fan.

I am.

The man is pure class. He came into the league straight from high school, he was the fifth pick over all in the 1995 draft. If you follow sports, you know that fifth pick in the draft means millions and millions of dollars, product endorsement and legions of instant fans.

And others.

In 1997, when he was 20 years old, he signed a 126 million dollar contract, and named the franchise player. Huge expectations were placed on his shoulders.

Over and over again, through impossible situations- at one point the starting point guard for the Minnesota Timberwolves point guard Malik Sealy was killed by a drunk driver, the general manager fined and banned for a year for improper trades- and still, Garnett shined.

He never got in trouble. A young man, merely 18 years old with more money than generations of his family had ever earned- combined, he was pure class off court. It is said that the Timberwolves moved his mother to be near him the first season, but I cannot verify that.

For me, the bottom line is during an age where professional athletes find themselves in courtrooms accused of rape (and in Kobe's case, admitted the sex, only said she asked for it), or in jail for dog fighting, or caught dealing drugs or involved with murder, Garnett is a gentleman who is a shining example of when it works.

A role model.

As the ball is thrown up tonight for tip off, and the Kobe/Kevin commentary is droned on and on by the announcers I want you all to remember one thing.

Only one of them has any class.

And that is Kevin Garnett.

Labels: , , , ,

Wednesday, June 04, 2008

Unstoppable Events.

Tuesday, June 03, 2008

And Clinton?

Should be VP.

No discussion.

History Has Been Made

When I was a little girl, Shirley Chisholm ran for president. I wrote her a letter. My mother was a fan.

Last election, Carol Moseley-Braun ran. I wanted her to win.

Tonight? We have elected the first African-American Man to run for President in the United States.

Tonight, we have made history.

McCain... More War and More Double Talk

This man has the creepiest laugh I've ever heard.

And he's laughing at all of us.

He knows what ambitions he will pursue.

Let the election begin, Johnny Prozac. We're going to kick your ass.

A Blue Revolution

As we wait for the results today from the last two primary votes, I have a few things I’d like to mention.

One? I’m sick of the Democratic Party. I’m sick of the games, the back room politics from a group that says it doesn’t play back room politics. I’m tired of the primary politics and super delegates- can we please have a system that the average Joe can understand? Not ever Democrat went to Harvard, and if we want to keep it that way, make it accessible. I’m sick of the centrist leanings in an effort to capture the vote of right wing fanatics.

Wake up. We’ll never get those votes. Donnie McClurkin is no way to bridge the gap.

I’m also tired of being a ‘gimmie’ vote for the Democrats. Howard Dean addresses the rules committee on Saturday and does he give a single shout out to LGBT groups? Nope. Why bother? Who are we going to vote for? McCain?

Although I can’t say Obama addresses our issues a whole lot better. Sure, he says the words, but the policies are nowhere. McCain panders to the right wing and charms Ellen Degeneres all in the same day. The double talk express is at least consistent.

I want electable candidates, like Al Gore, who will stand up and say, I believe in gay marriage. I believe in equal rights for all Americans.

Period. No pandering, no bullshit, pure and simple leadership.

I want a party that incorporates what Adam Werbach described in San Francisco at “Blue Living.”

As Werbach said, “I've seen people seeking something broader than a green or environmentalist solution to the myriad problems they face in their lives. Yes, they believe climate change is happening, but they also want to feel good about the way they look in the mirror and the way their kids look at them at the dinner table. They want to be part of something larger than themselves without having to sacrifice their identity. They want joy, not guilt, and a little money in their pocket so that they don't have to trade down on yet one more thing in their life.

When I heard Werbach’s speech, I was deeply moved. He spoke to my values- that there are many problems and issues facing us today, and climate change is a big one. I have always believed that business- especially big business- is the way to create social change in our country. I have poured my heart into shareholder resolution work only to see it ignored by the mainstream media.

I’m done with the Democrats. Yes, I will vote for Obama this fall. If he loses, the Democrats will turn and point to Clinton, I’m sure, for their failure instead of looking within their own system to create changes.

Same ol’ same ol’.

I want change. I want a new political party. I want a party based on the Blue Movements ideals. I want to be a part of a movement that recognizes the power of the consumer. One not built on guilt but that recognizes the reality of people’s lives “as busy, complex humans looking to do the best thing for their family and themselves.”

I believe people are ready for this change. It is why Obama’s speeches have been so popular. For me? I want real change.

I want real leadership.

No more pandering bullshit.

Please read the text of Adam Werbach’s speech.

And let’s create a Blue Political party.

Labels: , , , , , , , , , ,

Monday, June 02, 2008

LGBT Families Day: Rights or No Rights, We’re Still Parents

Fall soccer forms due August 8th, doctor’s appointments for summer camp forms and dinner cooked- but not yet eaten- by 4PM today. There is a little league baseball game and Zachary is pitching. By the time we get home, the baseball player will be too tired to wait another twenty minutes for the water to boil, the pasta to cook.

It’s another day of parenting. Not incredibly exciting or sexy but incredibly rewarding. I often am too tired at the end of the day to remember all that I did- the pick ups, drop offs, uniforms cleaned and lunches packed. But it always feels good.

Except when it doesn’t. Like when someone is sick, fighting about doing his or her homework or arguing over a toy.

Today is the third annual blogging for LGBT families day. Most of the posts are in the morning because we’re all too tired by night.

I find it fascinating that my neighbors have more rights than I do. I don’t see them as particularly better parents- or worse- we’re all simply trying to get our kids to bed at a decent hour and everyone to brush their teeth.

The only reason those parents have more rights is because they are heterosexual. They get to be married and recognized federally and internationally. There is no question about parenthood, or rights, or visitation, or inheritance or all the other rights heterosexuals enjoy in this country.

Not for my kids. My kids are being raised in a somewhat unusual family. My wife Jeanine and I decided many years ago that we wanted to have a family. Women all over the country were starting to have kids on their own, going to sperm banks and buying the best fit on paper.

Or at least what we thought was a good fit. It’s a complicated decision, to say the least.

We were reading about the ground breaking second parent adoption cases and realized we could have a baby. Raise a family. Things we never thought were possible when we were young lesbians, coming out in a world not so friendly.

We talked about it endlessly. We talked about names, how many and how we couldn’t wait to teach them how to throw a ball.

We also talked about what we valued, how we wanted our kids to be in the world. How we wanted strong girls and thoughtful boys. We talked about how we would deal with the homophobia they would face.

We never expected the reality. The long nights of wakeful babies ready to play at 3AM or the time that Ben, our oldest, was so nervous at his preschool graduation he threw up all over Jeanine.

Who had lifted him to her shoulders.

We did not expect to find such an accepting community. Or how our families of origin would open their arms to us. (Especially those Iowa people.)

We prepared endlessly for the “Where’s my Daddy?” question. The answer ended up being a simple, but firm, We are your parents, assuring our sons that in fact, they had parents like everyone else.

Because we are the boys parents. It may not have been either of our sperm, but we indeed created these kids. We chose to do it and it was not a simple process. There was no support in the greater world for our decision and while a loving community cushioned us, we were also denied insurance payments. We sought out a LGBT friendly doctor. We researched the best hospital to go to that would accept the other parent without question.

There are no “oops” babies in our house. AND we’ve always been clear this was a choice, a choice we made not only for ourselves but also for our children.

We’ve worked hard to create a family to address the kids’ needs. To have positive male role models, indeed surrogate dads to step into their lives. Sometimes, we’ve been right.

Sometimes we’ve been wrong. Pretty much like every other parent in the neighborhood.

In some ways, it is not any different at all. We all worry about high fevers or the cost of college. How to get them to pick up dirty socks or use the potty.

The only real difference? Some of us have rights, and some of us don’t. The irony is, it’s not going to stop us from raising families. Being parents.

Or putting our very tired starting pitcher’s to bed.

After all… I’m here. I’m queer. And I have to get to bed before 9:30PM or I’ll never be able to get up with the kids.

Labels: , , , , ,

Sunday, June 01, 2008

The Best Birthday Present Ever

I have to say, I have cool friends.

Really cool friends. From interesting walks of life. With different skills and talents.

Jeanine hired Edmundo James do draw an original comic strip for me. And then had them framed.

I've seen some of Mundo's work. But I never knew exactly how good he is. Help me find this guy an agent, okay?

And no, it's not just because he drew me as "Sapphire, Descendant of Saphho" or that he made me look incredibly buff and buxom.

But it didn't hurt...