The Wednesday wiggle

So I guess I'm going to become one of those blogs on Wednesdays.
I know that So You Think You Can Dance is a huge hit and it gets tons of ink spilled about it, but I can't help myself. I love dancing so much that I feel it is my obligation to post about the show.

Last week I completely overlooked Anya and Danny's jive from the previous week. Let me just say that ballroom, in general, doesn't really do it for me. The jive, thankfully, is a high energy, complicated footwork dance. Danny was perhaps preoccupied with getting the steps, but Anya really let loose. Their performance was stellar. Couple that with last week's oh-so-yawn-inducing, but technically flawless Vienese Waltz, and I think they're the couple to beat.

But let's get back to my favorite--little miss Sabra. She got to dance in her style last week and if her partner Dominic had just a tiny bit more oomph, it would have been the breakaway performance.

Another standout performance was Pasha and Jessi. Unfortunately, they ended up in the bottom three. Neither one was let go, but it looks like the end is nigh is for Ms. Jessi . . .

And, speaking of dancing, I've signed myself and my beau up for hustle lessons at the
Washington Dance Club in July.


All Fridays parties

Thanks so much for all the emails alerting me to the Buffy Sing A-Long this coming Friday. (And the comments in the comments section.) I think Tennille wins the prize for alerting me to it first--all the way back in February!
Thanks, Nilla!
So, Phil and I will be going this Friday. I'd love it if you came along. The more, the merrier, I say. We can grab a beer at Bill's Off Broadway beforehand or something!

Last Friday, we were at the Henry for the opening of the new Doug Aitken exhibit. I liked it quite a bit. It was pretty similar to his last piece. Lots of stuff about rhythm. There was room full of dolls which was cool (different artist). I'll be going back soon with my new toy . . .

Next Friday is my birthday! And you, gentle reader, are invited to join me and my peeps at Golden Gardens. Phil is making prepartions for reserving a table. I don't know exactly how the whole grill thing works--so most likely I'll just bring food that doesn't require grilling. As for alcoholic beverages, all Seattle parks have a no alcohol policy. This translates to bringing a sippy cup of some sort. There will be alcohol, but its gonna be on the down-low, like Matthew McConaughey.
So please come stop by and say 'Hey!' I'd love to see you. And bring a present. And not something cheap and meaningless, either.

As for that new toy.
Let's just say that this is a sign of things to come . . . (Its been in my possession for less than 5 hours)


Dancing about television

Summer is more or less here and with the arrival of sunshine comes a dearth of quality television programming. You would think that would be the impetus to get me out from behind the keyboard. You'd be wrong.
This is the time of year when I turn to the television for some quality dancing.
So You Think You Can Dance is back. Risa is the only person who takes it as seriously as myself, but I've gotten Phil and Matt on-board as reluctant viewers.
Let's do a recap.
Last week the two best routines were Mia's and Wade's. Mia's looked all emotion-y. Wade's looked all rip-off-y. Consequently, they were probably the best danced, as well.

But, and its taken me two weeks of poring over the videos, I've finally selected a favorite female dance. That dancer is Sabra. Maybe its the afro, but more likely, its the techinicality and clena lines she brings to kitschy disco. Fun, fun!


New life in print

Seems that Rob Thomas, creator of Veronica Mars, would like to start shopping a screenplay for our heroine. Also, following in Buffy footsteps, DC hopes to turn my favorite sleuth into book a la the Dark Horse and Buffy pairing. [article]

But if you just can't get enough of the lovely Ms. Kristin Bell, here's a pic from her upcoming film Fanboys. And if the sight Ms. Bell as Princess Leia doesn't get the fanboys goin', I don't know what will.

Right now she's filming a film with a horrible title ('Forgetting Sarah Marshall') directed by it-boy Judd Apatow ('Knocked Up'). [
I hate movies w/ titles like that. Regarding Henry, Finding Forester, Teaching Mrs. Tingle, et al.

Oh, and Matt named the painting from the previous post--The Pugilists. Pronounced PUG not Pyoo.


Dog fight tonight!

I know I don't write about him very much on here,--I guess that's cuz he can speak for himself (and does so through several outlets)--but my boyfriend rules the school.
One drunken evening, while standing on the patio and smoking (so it was over six weeks ago because I haven't smoked in nearly six weeks), Matt, Steve, Phil, and I somehow got into a discussion about a boxing match with little dogs, like pomeranians or pugs, as the boxing gloves. Yes, I realize that we were talking about fisting little dogs, but it was drunken conversation so we are all relieved of nearly all accountability.
Anyway, Phil gifted us with this lovely watercolor which now hangs framed on the wall next to the kitchen.

Awesome. Damn, my boyfriend is talented and smokin' hot!

And for some reason, this painting reminds me of the Julie Brown song 'Girl Fight Tonight'. So you get this for today, as well:

Oh, also you'll notice that I changed out the tracks in the Vault. I recently recieved a cease & desist from an artist and his label, so I won't be offering direct downloads anymore. Instead, if there's a track that interests you in the vault, shoot me an email and I'll send you the link.
Have a lovely weekend!


My weekend of penis mutilation

Matt and I watched Sick this weekend. Sick is a documentary about performance artist Bob Flanagan. His art centers on his infatuation with pain and masochism. A large majority of his pieces are video installations in which he mutilates his genitals.
I'm glad I was playing Warcraft and only occasionally looking at the screen. Even when I was looking, my eyes were generally shielded by my hands. I watched him hammer a nail through the head of his penis into a block of wood. Then he removed the nail with the claw of the hammer and blood spewed onto the camera lens.
My stomach was a knot of tension and nerves while I watched him perform. Shock value is definitely one aspect of his work, but more than that, as he explains, is a need to control pain. Bob suffers from cystic fibrosis (CF) and has felt varying degrees of pain his entire life. When viewed through this filter, his art becomes much more meaningful. He has learned to love pain, and through his control of it, he became the oldest living person with CF.
The film ends more horrifying than it begins, however. No matter how many pictures of his burnt, sewn, whipped, chained, weighted cock have been shown, the images of him dying in a hospital bed resonate more deeply. The documentarians do not turn the camera away from his last hours. They show him gasping like a fish out of water, eyes bulging. A nurse rubs his arm and tells him that its ok to let go. His wife and torturer beg him to hang on. In the end, he lets go.
If you can stomach it, Sick will do what all great documentaries do--it will provoke thought. I watched it two days ago and I'm still rolling it around my mind.

Saturday night, Phil and I watched Keep the River on the Right. It tells the story of Tobias Schneebaum, an artist and anthropologist who lived with a tribe of cannibals in Peru for a year. In many ways, Schneebaum is Flanagan's foil. Where Flanagan was trapped by disease and forced to be introspective, Schneebaum is unencumbered and is often just an observer. When the movie begins, Schneebaum is working on a cruise ship. Its how he makes his living, and even though his politics don't really jibe with those of a cruise, it is the only way in which he can visit New Guinea--another locale in which he spent much time in his youth.
It is during one of the excursions in New Guinea that I witnessed another mutilation of the penis. This time, it was young boys getting circumcised. I winced again, but had already become somewhat desensitized after viewing Sick.
What I found fascinating about Schneebaum's story was the matter-of-fact-ness of it. He never explains why he hitch hiked from New York City to Peru, but explains it instead as something he had to do. He never explains why he ate human flesh, but instead insists on his duty as an anthropologist. The film contains some great archival footage including a guest spot he had on the Mike Douglas show. While the Keep the River on the Right doesn't contain as many arresting images or a sense of urgency like Sick, it is still highly recommended.

This weekend I also caught Broken English at SIFF with Risa, Keith, Phil, and a couple of Keith's friends. Truthfully, my expectations weren't very high. I am a Parker Posey completist, though, so I was happy to attend.
Broken English is Zoe Cassavetes directorial debut, and what a disappointing debut it is. Like her brother Nick, she lives in her father's long, important shadow. They will never escape the fact that their father, almost single-handedly defined American independent cinema. (And, for my money some of the best films of all time including Faces, Shadows, A Woman Under the Influence, Opening Night, and The Killing of a Chinese Bookie.) So what kind of film did she make? One that should have been lighter than air, but that suffers from a trite screenplay and poor direction.
Parker Posey plays Nora, a 30-something hotel employee who feels the need to be coupled. Justin Theroux and Josh Hamilton play failed prospects, but Melvil Poupaud (Le Divorce) is the paramour in whose arms she falls. Drea de Mateo plays her best friend and Gena Rowlands plays her mother. The story has been told a hundred times--and told better, I might add. Glimpses of fun dialogue give way to longer shots of the couple walking around New York and Paris. So, unless you're a Parker Posey freak like me, you can skip this movie.

And, real quick, here's the leaked poster design for I'm Not There, the new film by fave director Todd Haynes. (I think its one of the best poster designs I've seen in a while.)


Knocking at my chamber door

I was talking with Phil's roommate the other day. He suffers from ornithophobia and was relaying a story of being dive bombed by a raven the other day. The poor guy ran down the street screaming like Tippi Hedren.

I told him about Kelley's old porch where birds used to nest. They'd swoop down and try to intimidate us as we smoked butts. Their little nestlings chirped away.

So I told him that maybe he had gotten too close to a nest.

That's when it hit me--I've never in my life considered that ravens nest. Bluebirds, sure. Woodpeckers, you bet, but those forboding ebony creatures? Never.

I always imagined that ravens just, I don't know, emerge from the darkness of night. They could never be hatchlings, right?
(And, in case you're keeping track, one month five days without a cigarette.)


Marry me a little

I'm making it a point to watch Regis and Kelly this morning when I get home from work. Its shocking, I know.
It must be something pretty special for me to put up with those two, and it is.
Raul Esparza and the cast of Company will be performing. So I get a little obsessive about things, sue me.
The Tonys are Sunday, and, yes, I will be watching and/or recording them.
Hey! Lay off! Watching the Tonys absolves me of most of my homosexual duties until the Christmas holiday season. Couple that with marching in the gay pride parade, and I'm clear until Valentine's Day.

Not only is he interminably handsome (especially with a beard). He also has the most angelic voice around.

I know I've put videos of him on here before, but here's another.


It's a family affair

First of all, I wanted to thank everyone who has expressed concern and sympathy for my aunt's illness. Last week was very rough. A week ago Wednesday, my aunt recieved impossibly good news. The tumor, the doctor said, was benign. That euphoria quickly gave way to resignation when she learned on Friday that the benign result was from a fat deposit around a much larger cancerous tumor.

My aunt is the member of my extended family to whom I am the closest. I would not be who I am if it weren't for her--when I was three days old, she gave me the name Jeremy. I will choose to look at her illness in the best possible light until all avenues of treatment have been exhausted. Thanks so much for your kind words and prayers, she can most definitely use them in this trying time.

So, speaking of family, this weekend I saw 'For the Bible Tells Me So' at SIFF. It's a documentary that chronicles five families who have grappled with their faith when one of the children comes of the closet. The film hit very close to home, and tears were literally streaming down my face for at least the last half hour. The film is never condescending, but definitely looks down on biblical literalism. It features some great interviews with some of the world's most progressive Christian thinkers, including Nobel Peace Prize winner Desmond Tutu, Peter J. Gomes, and Rev. Larry Keene. They are beacons of sanity making the rational counterpoint to the hellfire and brimstone that Jimmy Swaggart, Jerry Falwell, and their ilk espouse.

I truly feel that the reason I exist on a plane that is "less than" in my family structure is because of the church. My parents cannot reconcile my sexuality with their religion, and, as a result, I am not as worthy of their love as anyone else in my family. I have always placed the blame for this separation squarely at the feet of religion. This film helped me to remember that not all organized religion demonizes gays, and, in fact, the Episcopalian church recently confirmed a gay bishop.

I will be buying a copy of this film for my parents when it released on DVD--chances are they won't make it through the whole thing. They'll shut it off and consider it left-wing propaganda, but this film gave me hope that one day, I will be considered equal to my brothers. That's a hope I haven't felt in a very long time.

(Pictured is me and my niece at my dad's 70th birthday.)