Saturday, August 22, 2009


I'm sure mostly due to my (willful) ignorance about institutional sports -- to be honest, I'm ignorant about all kinds of sports, but the organized ones are the ones that are most ridiculous to me -- it seems like they're always getting worked up about inane things. Like doping, for instance. Why not just let the people take the drugs? There are so many ways -- usually having to do with access and money, but also genetic make-up, and others -- in which the so-called playing field is uneven. Why are they so cranky about drugs?

And this today in the Times about gender. Are they really just now discovering that gender can be elusive? Really? I guess if I can avoid knowing anything about sports, they can avoid knowing anything about gender. Why the separation in the first place? Why not just have a race and let everybody compete, not worry about whether they're men or women? Isn't it condescending to have separate women's sports in the first place?

Like I said, I know so little about sports, so I welcome comments telling me I'm being an idiot. The only requirement is that you have to tell me why.

Friday, August 21, 2009

Makin' up a few purdies ain't agin' no law I know of.

At first glance, this stuff can seem so dated and sentimental and campy, but the beauty and subtlety and precision of the storytelling in these songs always blows me away. Look at Gordon MacCrae's performance with fresh eyes and let yourself be moved. And how beautiful was Shirley Jones?

Red Without Blue.

J and I just watched a beautiful film called Red Without Blue. It's a great story well told, great soundtrack, the filmmaking is lyrical. I highly recommend it. It's the kind of film I hope some day I will make.

Thursday, August 20, 2009

Through the Eye of a Needle.

This op-ed in the Times today made me sad and angry.

I just read a book called The Worst Hard Time, about the Dust Bowl. (Great book -- I recommend it. It's by Tim Egan.) There was a wrenching episode in which two black men who were riding the rails looking for work were arrested somewhere in the Midwest and put in jail for stealing some food. Twice they were hauled into court before a judge who made them dance. And then sent them back to jail.

I've never in my adult life been very far from indigence (literally and figuratively speaking). I'm fine being poor. I think I could adjust to being even poorer -- I've never had any money -- but the moral judgment scares me, the shunning. J and I were just talking yesterday about the old black men who hang out at the bus stop on the corner. They're old, poor, and very polite. They ask for money, but they are so not a threat to anyone, yet the police harass them regularly, make them get up, move. It's just a big show of power and humiliation.

So far to go.

Trust Me. Stay Away.

Summer in Texas is a living hell. If you have any say in the matter, do not come here any time from May to September. It's an absolute nightmare, and it has defeated me. I have tried over and over and over to change my attitude toward it and it has defeated me. The heat is absolutely relentless, and it brings out a rage in me that scares me.

I'm sure one reason I have found it so hard to blog this summer is that, whenever I sit down to write, all I feel moved to do is whine about how goddamn hot it is. I think there have been a half dozen or fewer days since the first week of June when the afternoon temperature has been under 100. And not much under 100. I'm sure everyone around me is sick of hearing me complain. I'm sick of hearing me complain.

I have to find some way to get out of here in the summers.

Pearly Dew Drops Drop.

This is exactly how I remember Cocteau Twins live, with the big tape deck on stage. I think I saw them at Webster Hall, which wasn't called Webster Hall back then, but I can't remember what it was called. This song takes me back to such a specific time and place, like a pin on a map.

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Facebook Ate My Blog.

Summer school was tough, and I have a whole list of things I was putting off until I finished. One of them was to start blogging again, daily. So that's what I'm doing, even though I'm not really sure what I have to say today. I realized that my facebook status updates were fulfilling my need to share my pithy (or not) little thoughts or things I'd run across in various places and thought they were interesting. That's what this space was for, before facebook.

A week from tomorrow I'm leaving for New York for the last couple weeks of rehearsals and the opening weekend of Lizzie Borden. When I get back I have to find a job. Before I leave I want to finish reading the manuscript of J's novel, which he just finished.

Apparently, dating -- though not on my list -- is one of those things I was putting off till I finished school. I went out with a guy Sunday, who I'd been out with once before and like a lot, and last night I went out with another man, very different from the guy I went out with Sunday, and had a great time. I met my newish friend M Sunday afternoon at a bar in town that I'd never been to before. I had heard it was fun on Sunday, but while I was in school I never did anything on Sundays but homework. It was fun, and two handsome men quite a bit younger than me asked me out. Speaking of how old I am, I'm 48, and I'm not sure why it is I'm suddenly so popular, but I'm going to enjoy it.