Archive for October 18th, 2011

October 18th, 2011

carolynkellogg: The LA Public Library’s 1928 bookmobile for the…


The LA Public Library’s 1928 bookmobile for the sick. Kind of like a book wheelbarrow that tilts.


October 18th, 2011

The Perks of Being a Killjoy

The Perks of Being a Killjoy:


Another excellent Rookie article about figuring out how to call people out on their b.s., when their b.s. is offensive and bothers you to the point of making you real angry. 

I particularly like this part:

“Sometimes when you think you are being the ‘humorless feminist,’ you might be saying something that everyone was thinking but didn’t want to be the one to bring it up.”


October 18th, 2011

superseventies: The wedding of Cher and Gregg Allman,…


The wedding of Cher and Gregg Allman, 1975.

The very best.

October 18th, 2011

Barrycat and Monster

Barrycat and Monster

October 18th, 2011

Warning: Mawkish

It’s ten years this week since Barrycat died. It is still, somehow, the single most devastating thing that has ever happened to me. Which is embarrassing. I’ve had friends and loved ones die. I once truly, darkly, lost myself in love and almost didn’t come back. But Barrycat’s death is with me so much more often than anything else.

I suppose it’s partly because he died fairly soon after 9/11, while we were still breathing cremains and my neighborhood was plastered with “Missing” flyers that were little monuments of extinguished hope.

It’s… I don’t know. He was just a little cat. And he died so abruptly and so violently. One thing I learned, and it’s also connected to 9/11, is that the body is so important. After he died, they took him away and cleaned him up and then they brought him back and let me sit with him and I sat there for hours, crying and petting him. I didn’t want to ever leave him, I had tried so hard to keep him happy and safe. After I finally got it together and left the hospital they said that the cemetery would call me about arrangements.

When they did call, they ran down a list of options—having him buried there, having him cremated and then buried there, having him cremated and taking the ashes, etc. And you also could, for an extra fee, see your pet one last time before they buried or cremated him. I borrowed Jen’s car and drove to White Plains, crying the whole way but also feeling so excited to see him, to see my dead cat. He was in a little box, just kind of curled up. I put some little milagros in with him, and some food, and a little note. Just in case. I could have sat there with him for hours. but they only give you a half hour or so.

Then I took him home, his ashes. They’re up on the shelf with Lynn’s fishnets, a photo of Darby’s son, and other important things. I can’t imagine, those who lost people in the towers, how you can go on with nothing. No body. The emptiness of that makes me sick with fear.

It was terrible, trying to keep going. Monster walked around the apartment looking for him and crying all the time. She licked off her fur and wouldn’t eat. A few months later we moved, and Mr. Fritz Newman came to live with us. Sometimes it feels like a weird sham household.

Barrycat was a goofball. He hated missing any action, so if his dinnertime coincided with activity going on in the rest of the apartment, he would run into the kitchen, get a mouthful of food, and then run back out into the living area, chewing. He was a big fan of large-breasted women and would enthusiastically insinuate himself onto their laps. He had philosophical leanings: He once shredded an entire volume of Habermas, and brought his radical skepticism to bear on various household events. He was terrified of the vacuum cleaner and sometimes, if I hadn’t vacuumed for a while, he would pee on it and hen run for his life.

He was a lovable, loving kitty and I loved him most because he made Monster so happy. She, like me, is skittish, awkward, suspicious, and runs from most opportunities for closeness. He countered this with a strategy of straight up cuddles and an uncomplicated happiness at being in her mere presence. Maybe that’s a little part of why it makes me so sad that he’s gone. Maybe (probably?) I’ve missed out on any chance for that kind of love.

Anyway. I just wallow in it at this time of year.

If you’d like to celebrate the spirit of Barrycat, I urge you to eat with relish and abandon, to demand affection from strangers, and to give a little love to the Monsters of this world.

October 18th, 2011

"Unfortunately, as with so much of feminism, the word that got out about feminism and sex work was…"

“Unfortunately, as with so much of feminism, the word that got out about feminism and sex work was devoid of the kind of nuance found in Whores or the feminist writing that came before it. Instead of engaging with theories of how sex work subverts heteronormativity or offering dialogues about the intersections of race, class, and capitalism, what the media and pop culture filtered from these works was the simplistic equation that it was now a feminist act to strip for a living or to watch porn.”

- From Andi Zeisler’s “Feminism and Pop Culture” — this, and the rest of the piece, are important I think if we embark on this project of undoing feminism. Last night at the Sistersong meeting I kept thinking about how the organizing strategies and actions that parts of contemporary feminism rely on (“awareness campaigns,” “slut walks,” and the “pop culture as a recruitment tool” that midwestmountainmama has written about) are in and of themselves perpetuating erasure and racism.  We talked about forming a Truth and Reconciliation-type of working group, very much looking forward to it. 
October 18th, 2011

Sometimes I forget what it is like to not have a headache.

Sometimes I forget what it is like to not have a headache.