Saturday, September 22, 2007


I survived my first week at the gym. I'm still sore, but much less so. Now it's only a general soreness all over. In just a week, my shoulders are noticeably (to me) different, bigger, and that's enough encouragement to keep at it.

My first Biology exam is on Monday, so I'll be studying all weekend. I think I'm in fairly good shape because I've studied all along, but there's a shitload of vocabulary to keep in my brain.

The weather seems to be hinting the last few days that maybe, just maybe, summer will be over soon. If I have ever done anything remotely resembling praying, I am doing it now for that.

The Unknown Life of a Great Movie.

Did anyone see The Dangerous Lives of Altar Boys? It was made in 2002, but I don't remember it coming out in theaters. I read an article about Jodie Foster in the New York Times by Manohla Dargis last week in which she mentioned this movie that I had not heard of. (I'm so happy the Times finally got rid of their stupid TimesSelect thing where they hid the good articles behind a pay barrier.) All the article said about the movie was that Jodie Foster plays a one-legged nun, which was enough for me, so I greencine'd it and J and I watched it last night.

Jodie Foster produced it, and she's great as the nun, but the movie is about the boys. See it if you haven't. It's full of the best kind of surprises. Most people seem to already get the comic book thing, but I never did really, until I saw this movie.

Wednesday, September 19, 2007


Today I worked out on my own for the first time, and I came home feeling defeated because I could only do about half of what I had done with the trainer. I wondered if it might be because he was not there encouraging me, but a better guess is that it's because I'm so fucking sore I can hardly move. Yesterday I woke up feeling like I got hit by a truck. This morning it felt like the truck put it in reverse and backed over me. Most of the pain is in my arms and shoulders and chest.

I almost didn't go to the gym today. Since I could hardly lift my backpack, I wondered if it would really be productive to try to lift weights. Finally I told myself to just go and do whatever I could do. I didn't want to skip a day so early in the program. (Besides, my backpack weighs about 3 times as much as any of the weights I'm lifting.) Most of the exercises that my trainer had me doing for 10 reps I could only do 6 or 8.

I found out that the gym is much less crowded at 1:30 than it is at 5, so I may start going early on Monday, Wednesday, and Friday. On Tuesday and Thursday I have a couple big gaps between classes, but I can't imagine going to class after the gym. I can't imagine doing much of anything after the gym. Honestly, I could barely work the computer to check my email when I got home. (I'm trying hard not to exaggerate, because that would be complaining, which I don't do any more.)

After I regained the partial use of my hands, I wrote my first paper! It's only a one-page paper, but it was exciting for me because it's the first in my second college career. It's called "Is That a Pen in Your Pocket?" It's a reaction paper to the Sandra Gilbert essay, "The Queen's Looking Glass," which is a pretty important piece of writing if you're a feminist literary scholar. Check it out.

Tuesday, September 18, 2007

Good Lord, It's Early.

Last night at Hut's -- J and I go fairly regularly on Monday night 2-for-1 veggie burgers -- I could barely life my water glass to take a drink. The glasses at Hut's, like at so many places in Texas, hold about a half gallon of water, but I think I would have had trouble with a juice glass last night.

I had my first workout with my trainer yesterday. This morning, my arms are so sore I'm wincing every time I move them. I don't know if that's why I woke up at 3:30 and couldn't get back to sleep.

The workout must have jogged something loose in my brain, because on the way home my idea for the short paper I have to write this week started taking shape seemingly all by itself. Seriously, it was like turning on the radio and listening to someone talk. Or maybe I'm schizophrenic.

The workout experience is hard to put into words. As I got more and more fatigued, I started to feel pretty emotional. I think I may back off a little on my tendency to intellectualize every new experience I have and just let this one sink in. All I'll say is that walking home I felt very, very good.

Sunday, September 16, 2007

Jesus Was a Sissy and Christians are Hot.

I read a blog called Joe.My.God. every day. I started reading it because I can't stand the mainstream gay media -- which is too obsessed with shopping and hairless torsos -- but I still want to keep up with so-called gay culture and issues. Joe.My.God. is like a friend with a great sense of humor keeping you up to date.

Joe has a lot of readers, and every so often a subject will start a long free-wheeling thread of comments. Sometimes interesting, sometimes not. There are a few blowhards who are hard to take -- some might include me in that category and I'm okay with that -- but there are also a lot of smart, thoughtful commenters.

Things Joe's readers like to argue about are "old gay vs. new queer," "transexuals: yea or nay," and, lately, whether We (this community of people who can't agree on what we are or who is included or what to call ourselves but is broadly defined by some kind or other of sexual deviance) like or dislike being represented in the mainstream media by effeminate men (e.g., Carson what's-his-name on Queer Eye for the Blah-blah or more recently Chris Crocker, the so-called crazed Britney Spears fan who is actually a performance artist but people don't seem to be able to tell the difference between art and reality anymore): the "Sissy Question."

Aaaanyway, coincidentally, someone recently handed J, or he picked up somewhere, a religious tract called The Sissy, published by Chick Publications (named after the guy who writes the tracts). It's pretty funny, so I thought I'd share it with you. The drawing style reminds me of illustrated paperback porn novels that I used to buy at a great bookstore in the West Village. I can't remember the name of the store; it hasn't been there for years, but it was a neighborhood institution, very dusty and nondescript. Mostly, it had long racks of vintage 70s and earlier gay porn magazines. (I used to frequent the place in the early 80s, so I guess the magazines weren't really vintage then, just used. Ew.) And then smaller racks of pulp novels. A lot of them were truck driver stories. I loved them.