2.28.2006

Happy Paczki Day!



Am I a bad Detroiter because I don't like paczkis? I appear to be the only one. Of course, in England, today is Pancake Day, which is a holiday I can totally get behind. Mmmm....pancakes!

annamaria at 8:41 AM

2 spoke

Incontrovertable proof of the gay and lesbian agenda

This one's for you, Kerri:



Frippy tells the story of an Exodus International billboard that got a pretty little makeover from the good citizens of St. Louis.

I've said this before, but I seem to be in a redundant mood lately, so I'll say it again: Even if it is possible that one can change their sexuality from gay to straight, why should they? That is my biggest problem with these so-called "ex-gay" ministries--they offer no good reason for anyone to subvert their natural sexual orientation in favor of a new one. I'm straight, and I don't care how much indoctrination I receive at the hands of the homoprop™ artists of the world, nothing is going to change that. But even if I were to entertain the notion that I could, through the good work of the "ex-straight" ministries of the world, become a lesbian overnight, there is absolutely no reason why I should. It seems that the only reason that Exodus International and Love Won Out, et. al. have for changing one's sexual orientation is to avoid the very bigotry these groups espouse.

I take my marching orders (and the occassional link) from Twisty.

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annamaria at 7:14 AM

6 spoke

2.27.2006

Annamaria is always so angry; I am always so busy.

I may not have much content these days, but at least I can make you swoon at the cuteness.

person x at 4:24 PM

2 spoke

2.24.2006

Detroit to Suburbs: Fuck Off. Again.


Even the Ren Cen is telling you to fuck off


Detroitblog alerts us to this gem, hidden within an article in The News about the city council’s backtracking on the zoo proposal:

Meanwhile, Detroit City Councilwoman JoAnn Watson called for Detroiters to stage an economic boycott of the suburbs in response to what she calls blatant and institutional racism that has been exhibited amid the zoo fracas.

"Detroiters should spend money where they live," Watson said. "It is clear there are layers of disrespect, racism and white supremacy. It's not about getting along. Racism is a disease in this country. A lot of black folks walk around and deny it. This country got rich on the backs of black folks."


Oh, my dear sweet Detroit friends, please tell me that none of you actually voted for this woman.

A boycott of the suburbs—that’s rich, darling. As Ian noted in the comments the other day, THERE ARE NO GROCERIES STORES IN DETROIT! Well, there is that Farmer Jack* on Warren at I-75, but it’s kind of difficult to shop there since half of the shelves are empty. Kwame lost the deal to get Home Depot to move into the city, so when your house is falling apart (as far too many of them in Detroit have a tendency to do), apparently Watson would rather you didn’t run to Madison Heights to get a hammer and nails. And, of course, should the city actually save the zoo, Watson wants Detroiters to avoid going there, since it would just encourage people to spend money in Royal Oak.

The city of Detroit, despite being the home of General Motors and Compuware, can’t cough up $4 million to save the zoo, and Watson really thinks that an economic boycott will put a dent in Oakland County’s budget? According to the 2000 Census, Oakland County is the 26th wealthiest county in the United States; Detroit is the 4th poorest city in the country.

Want to know why suburbanites refuse to help Detroit? It’s because we’re sick and fucking tired of being told that holding the city council to some degree of decorum and effectiveness is evidence of racism. But what I really want to know is why are these comments never turned around on the speaker? When will someone ask Watson why she believes that a black city, lead by a black mayor and a black council, cannot keep their schools open, their police forces fully staffed, the electricity on, or, heaven help us, maintain at least one place within the city limits where someone can buy fresh produce? I don’t think the council’s utter incompetence has anything to do with race, but apparently Watson disagrees.

*UPDATE: I've just been told that the Farmer Jack I referenced above is, in fact, closed. I love it when being proven wrong actually bolsters my argument!

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annamaria at 12:16 PM

2 spoke

Friday Random Ten



That up there is the cover of the latest by Magnetic Fields frontman Stephin Merritt, and based on the cover alone, I cannot wait to buy this album. Although I'm still trying to decide if the new song "What a Fucking Lovely Day!" could possibly surpass Merritt's classic "How Fucking Romantic." We'll have to wait until March 14th to find out.

So, in honor of Stephin's upcoming release, here's my favorite Magnetic Fields song just for you: When My Boy Walks Down the Street (Funtime OK) And I swear my love of this song has nothing whatsoever to do with its placement in one my favorite Queer as Folk scenes--it's just a coincidence!

Now that my fangirl moment is out of the way--here's my Friday Random Ten!

  1. There's No Fucking Rules Dude - !!!
  2. The War Criminal Rises & Speaks - Okkervil River
  3. Technicolor Girls - Death Cab for Cutie
  4. Kiss Me Like You Mean It - Magnetic Fields
  5. Blue Monday - New Order
  6. Waiting for the End of the World - Elvis Costello
  7. Magic - Ben Folds Five
  8. Sick of Goodbyes - Sparklehorse
  9. Youth Decay - Sleater Kinney
  10. I Have No Sister - Oh No! Oh My!
Bonus Track! Postcards from Italy - Beirut (GvB) This is seriously my new favorite song. So good!

Your turn!

Oh, and before I forget, You Ain't No Picasso has an interview with Eef Barzeley. Check it out! This is the one time when I won't be upset if you navigate away from this page, since there are far too many exclamation points for my liking--I'm supposed to be a serious blogger, damnit!

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annamaria at 7:56 AM

3 spoke

Uxorious = Adam's Sin



I found this old box of notebooks and whatnot from my college days, and I spent some time sifting through it last night, trying to determine what I could legitimately let go, and what things I should keep for sentimental reasons. Needless to say, my Macro Econ notes ended up in the fireplace and kept me toasty warm last night!

My women's studies notes, however, were a little more difficult to let go. One in particular intrigued me, because my shorthand from seven years ago confounded me a bit. For example, from my Feminist Theory cause I noticed this comment:

Uxorious = Adam's Sin


What in the world does that mean? I've always been fond of using the world uxorial snidely, since it means "befitting or characteristic of a wife." And really, given the connotation there, snidely is the only proper way to use that word. But uxorious was giving me a little trouble. What does "wifeliness" have to do with the fall of man?

Turns out, the definition of uxorious is "foolishly fond of or submissive to your wife." Adam's sin, of course, was listening to Eve, poor maligned Eve, who wasn't even around when God told Adam not to eat that apple. I think my distrust of Christianity was solidified the moment I realized that all of the evil in the world was supposedly caused by a guy who just loved his wife too much.

So, I was intrigued by this notion of being "foolishly fond of" your wife, and wondered if there was a husbandly corollary. Google to the rescue:


Yeah, that's what I thought.

annamaria at 7:24 AM

6 spoke

2.23.2006

"Abortion should always be illegal"


Click here to enlarge image


I feel like a broken record, but it really needs to be stated again and again until we all know it by rote: pro-lifers don't care about babies. Of course, they don't want you to know that, so lucky for us that their complete disregard for babies is so glaringly obvious whenever they get the chance to legislate abortion. Take South Dakota's pro-lifers, for instance, whose duly-elected patriarchs legislators passed the first wholesale abortion ban in 14 years.
After more than an hour of fierce and emotional debate, the senators rejected pleas to add exceptions for incest or rape or for the health of the pregnant woman and instead voted, 23 to 12, to outlaw all abortions, except those to save the woman's life.

Well, it's nice to know that if it comes down to my life or the little bundle of conceptus, South Dakota's got my back. But if Daddy rapes his little girl, sorry, but she's shit out of luck. Do you really think these people care about kids? There is no exception for incest! Where are all the baby worshippers when a thirteen-year-old girl is raped? Where is the hand wringing about saving her life? To quote Bill Hicks, "What, they reach a certain age and their off your fucking love list?"

Abortion bans are fundamentally punitive, and South Dakota makes that very clear by declaring that they don't care how the evil sluts got knocked up, they'll have to endure their womanly burden anyway. More importantly, anti-abortion rhetoric underscores that, for pro-lifers, life is nothing more than existing. Terri Schiavo was alive because she existed, and for all of those pro-life activists trying to reinstate her feeding tube and keep her hooked up to machines, the quality of her life was never even a question. Fetuses exist, and as such should be allowed to continue to exist, their line of thinking naturally follows, despite the horrific conditions in which they might end up living, and in spite of the lives of their mothers who are far too often still children themselves. The quote which I've used for the title of this entry is from South Dakota Gov. Mike Rounds, who is the only person standing in the way of the ban becoming law. It's scary to think that a law which bans all abortions unless pregnancy will kill you might actually be too lenient for this guy.

Just like every time other time an abortion ban or restriction has been passed, Planned Parenthood will seek an injunction preventing the law from being enforced and a nasty court battle will ensue. But South Dakota has something that no state in the years since Roe has been fortunate to have: four little aces up their sleeves called Scalia, Thomas, Roberts and Alito:
Lawmakers opposed to abortion rights here and advocates opposed to abortion rights around the country have been split over timing questions. Some argue that the arrivals of Chief Justice John G. Roberts Jr. and Justice Samuel A. Alito Jr. on the Supreme Court and speculation that Justice John Paul Stevens might soon retire, made now an ideal time to challenge Roe.

Others, however, have said a challenge should wait, for the arrival of additional justices who might be open to overturning Roe and for a shift in public opinion.

Of course, throw in Kennedy who voted in Stenberg to uphold a so-called partial birth abortion ban despite its lack of health provision for the woman, and you've got the five votes necessary to overturn Roe.

One of the favorite arguments of those who want to see Roe overturned is that the decision was judicial tyranny, imposing abortion on the unsuspecting masses who should have been given the opportunity to allow local standards to inform abortion law. Leaving aside the obvious argument that if we allowed "local standards" to dictate civil liberties there would still be whites-only drinking fountains in the South, the pro-life argument is still specious since South Dakota purposefully ignored calls to "allow South Dakotans to decide the question in a referendum and an effort to prevent state tax dollars from financing what is certain to be a long and expensive court battle." So, not only did they tell the citizens of South Dakota that their local standards won't be necessary here where all the big boys are making the tough and important decisions, but also that they will have to pay for the "long and expensive court battle" that they may or may not have wanted.

But I can't let South Dakota have all the anti-choice fun today--just take a look at Michigan's stellar record. Don't worry Jen, this time I'll say it for you: your state is better than mine.

Thanks to Feministing for the Alito cartoon

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annamaria at 7:12 PM

2 spoke

2.21.2006

Nice going, Melvin*



Kwame and the council are at it again. With literally hours remaining until a proposal to turn the Detroit Zoo over to the non-profit Detroit Zoological Society lapsed, the council decided to close the park and start mailing layoff notices yesterday. The current zoo opened in 1928, and has been the home of thousands of animals since then, most notably the elephants Wanda and Winky, who made national headlines in 2005 when director Don Kagen sent the animals to a sanctuary, citing ethical concerns about the zoo’s inability to meet the physical and psychological needs of the animals.

For his part, Kwame did offer a counter proposal which would have saved the city $5 million a year, and still would have allowed his name to appear on the iconic Detroit Zoo water tower (one of the many perks of being mayor of Detroit), but since both Kwame and the DZS’s plan would have turned ownership of the park to a suburban organization, the council in their infinite wisdom decided that no park is better than one run by white people. As detroitblog so eloquently put it: "The council is like the guy who kills his girlfriend rather than see her wind up with another man."

Did I mention that the proposal would have cost the city $10 million over two years, whereas the city will have to shell out $12 million this spring to shut the park permanently. Apparently, a grasp of simple mathematics is not a requirement for being on the council. Being batshit crazy, though, always welcome.

Apparently, there is still a chance that city could reconsider and reinstate funding for the zoo, or accept the DZS proposal. For all you concerned tri-county denizens, the city council is having their monthly community meeting tonight from 7:00 to 8:30 at Central Area, YouthVille Detroit, 7375 Woodward Avenue at Grand Boulevard. You can also contact the council at 313-224-3443 or www.ci.detroit.mi.us and click on City Council, then Feedback.

*Do any of you remember that old Detroit Zoo commercial from the 80s? The one with the animals preparing for the opening of the park as if they were pampered actors getting ready for the opening night of a play? "Nice going, Melvin" was always my favorite line.

Hat tip to Lauren, who wouldn't shut up until I called the council and lodged my complaint.

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annamaria at 7:55 AM

4 spoke

2.17.2006

Happy Friday!



If you are as shitty and cold and grumpy as I have been all day, why don't you take a little trippy over to Cute Overload.

At least your heart can be tosty warm.

Now I just have to do something about my toesies.

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person x at 3:11 PM

2 spoke

Question for Internet Explorer users

Just want to see if I'm the only one having this problem. Whenever I view the blog from work, using Internet Explorer, I notice that the "blogs of interest" on the sidebar gets all kinds of screwed up. Scrolling up and down produces this effect:


See the crazy lines running through words and general inability to read anything?

I've only noticed it since changing the blog template, and it's only the section of the side bar that uses BlogRolling. Does anyone else notice this? I've never noticed this problem at home, and I use Firefox when not required by a big nasty Corpocracy (read: my employer) to do otherwise.

If it's an issue for everyone, I might have to change the template to something else (but not black with dots--I'm so fucking sick of black with dots). Or, since it's only the BlogRolling section, maybe we can do away with that altogether and just embed the links in the template, like I did with the music section. Let me know what y'all think.

Edited to add: If it is just me, can any of you computer savvy folks (that means you, Jay) tell me what I can do to stop it from doing that? Remember, I am required to use IE at work, so telling me to download Firefox isn't going to help.

annamaria at 7:54 AM

6 spoke

Friday Random Ten



I've noticed a bit of increased traffic from our new friends over at the cleverly named Clever Titles Are So Last Summer, and since the Friday Random Ten demands participation, I thought I'd give everyone a refresher on the rules:

Here's my list, which unfortunately isn't very random--mostly indie rock, with a pinch of Prince to liven things up. Except, of course, it's Diamonds and Pearls which isn't very lively. In fact, I don't even like that song. Of the hundreds of Prince songs I own, why is that the only one that ever shows up on this thing?

  1. King of Carrot Flowers Pt.1 (live) - Neutral Milk Hotel
  2. Confused - Lou Barlow
  3. That Was My Veil - PJ Harvey & John Parrish
  4. Small Town Shit - Hotel Lights
  5. Little Savage - Elvis Costello & The Attractions
  6. Diamonds and Pearls - Prince
  7. Road to Rock N'Roll - Joe Strummer & The Mescaleros
  8. Tiny Spark - Brendan Benson
  9. Philosophy - Ben Folds Five
  10. Life's What You Make It - Talk Talk

Your turn!

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annamaria at 7:35 AM

7 spoke

2.14.2006

Thank fucking God.



Or god. Lower-case "g." I think the religious right would be angry angry. Lord's name in vain, after all. Especially considering the circumstances.

Oh, you haven't heard? Well, turns out that the state pharmacy board of Massachusetts has ordered our favorite fucking retail monstrosity, Wal-Mart, to carry emergency contraception in its stores. The reason why they haven't carried it to date? Well, I'm glad you asked:

Wal-Mart now carries the pill only in Illinois, where it is required to do so under state law. The company has said it "chooses not to carry many products for business reasons," but has refused to elaborate.

Shocking how they refuse to elaborate. Kind of how they choose not to elaborate on their employment, benefit and pay practices. Oops.

First sentence didn't really apply to my point, but just wanted to address how my state is superior to Annamaria's state once again.

person x at 11:47 PM

5 spoke

Sign up for my magazine.



Seriously. I'm the managing editor. If you go here, you get a free subscription for a year. It won't suck. I promise.

And the mag doesn't feature boobs -- unless you want boobs.

If you want boobs, I'll hook you up.

person x at 11:13 PM

4 spoke

I am filled with cocaine.


Ten Top Trivia Tips about Jen Jones!

  1. Jen Jones was originally green, and actually contained cocaine.
  2. All of the roles in Shakespeare's plays - including the female roles - were originally played by Jen Jones!
  3. The Asteroid Belt between Mars and Jupiter is made entirely of Jen Jones.
  4. Jen Jones can grow up to three feet in a 24 hour period!
  5. If the Sun were the size of a beach ball then Jupiter would be the size of a golf ball and Jen Jones would be as small as a pea.
  6. There is no lead in a lead pencil - it is simply a stick of graphite mixed with Jen Jones and water.
  7. Jen Jones is actually a vegetable, not a fruit!
  8. California is the biggest exporter of Jen Jones in the world.
  9. It is impossible to fold Jen Jones more than seven times!
  10. All gondolas in Venice must be painted black unless they belong to Jen Jones!

Find out about you. And report back.

person x at 1:18 PM

2 spoke

2.13.2006

What’s a little persecution between friends?


I continue to be completely amazed by the rightwing religious folks in this country. The Bushistas side with Pakistan, despite its horrific treatment of women, because they back the War on Terror. Saudi Arabian women aren’t much better off, but hey, they’ve got lots of oil so we can look the other way, right? And now the fundies are praising China (China!) for adhering to "traditional values" and banning films:
China, despite its poor record on human rights and outright ban on most non-state-run religion, still holds on to some traditional values abandoned by most western nations. These values have led censors there to ban the homosexual propaganda film, Brokeback Mountain.

This is a place where religious freedom is an oxymoron and Catholic priests are beaten and arrested for practicing their faith. Where anyone criticizing the government will have their identities handed over by American companies to appease a hardline government that cannot stand dissent. Re-read that paragraph, would you? "[D]espite its poor record on human rights and outright ban on most non-state-run religion..." Is this really the type of society you want to get in bed with? Is it enough to say the enemy of my enemy is my friend, when that nation so abhors individual freedom that they legislate which beliefs are acceptable? Christians in the United States should be appalled by China’s treatment of missionaries and priests, not praising them for finding yet another minority group to oppress.

Noam Chomsky once said, "If we don't believe in freedom of expression for people we despise, we don't believe in it at all." By praising China’s ban of Brokeback Mountain, the fundies are tacitly endorsing that nation’s clamp down on all expression—including the expression of one’s Christian beliefs. And they should be ashamed of themselves.

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annamaria at 10:21 AM

9 spoke

2.12.2006

Who is that girl? Nevermind such trivial matters. But how about if you got shot by Dick?


A hunting companion of Vice President Dick Cheney was recuperating from shotgun pellet wounds to his face, neck and chest Sunday after Cheney accidentally shot the man in a weekend quail-hunting trip on one of Texas' biggest ranches, according to the ranch owner and the vice president's office.

HOT. Bet this dude didn't think that, during his trip out into the woods with a big dick, that he would get shot with a load to the head, neck, and chest. Damn, Cheney. Didn't know you had it in ya!

(Forgive me. Couldn't resist the horrible dick jokes. I mean, come on! His name is Dick, and he is a dick. When he shoots someone, you just can't pass up that opportunity.)

P.S. - What in the hell is the temperature in Torino? I feel like I'm watching an old episode of 90210 - no one is wearing the same kind of clothing. Tees, sweaters, sweatshirts. Okay. Those are all in the same vein. But then there are people in giant jackets and hats and scarves and shit. WTF?

person x at 10:40 PM

1 spoke

2.10.2006

My goodness...


Knowing how I feel about Guinness--always served room temperature, only in pints, not to be fucked with--Rich sent me this article about the new low-alcohol breed of my favorite stout. Check out how it appears on the sidebar:



My thoughts exactly.

annamaria at 2:11 PM

3 spoke

Friday Random Ten

Hedwig and Tommy

Sorry for running late this week. The training hell I wrote about two weeks ago continues, and my coworkers are still unable to navigate a simple website. Of course, some of my coworkers seem to have trouble breathing unaided, so I shouldn't be too surprised.

But, my work related frustration is boring, isn't it? The really important issue is this: how in the hell did I get two songs called Chewing Gum on my FRT?? And a grand total of four Bens (Folds, Lee, Kweller and Gibbard)!


  1. The Problem With April - Of Montreal
  2. Chewing Gum - Annie
  3. Wicked Little Town (Tommy Gnosis Version) - The Bens
  4. God Knows (You Gotta Give to Get) - El Perro Del Mar
  5. Sinking Ships (live) - Sloan
  6. F the CC - Steve Earle
  7. Biomusicology - Ted Leo and the Pharmacists
  8. 405 (Acoustic) - Death Cab for Cutie
  9. Chewing Gum - Elvis Costello
  10. Such Great Heights - The Postal Service

Your turn!

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annamaria at 10:53 AM

9 spoke

The joys of Site Meter


Click on the picture, I dare you


I recently noticed that BOMT has had over 8,000 visits, and I was curious as to what brings people to our little corner of the world. That's when Site Meter became my new best friend. Jen wrote a while back about the influx of visitors who found us by searching for "human battling bitches" (which I still think would make a killer band name), but it seems the more we write, the stranger the web queries that bring people to us. Check out the stats for this week alone:

Someone (and by someone I mean the Brit who visited yesterday at 8:17:49 pm) found us by searching for "evil sluts." We're #3 on MSN! Still others wanted pictures of Jarvis Cocker, Cheerleaders*, and Johnny Cash's middle finger (though, thankfully, not at all once). Some kind soul in Fayetteville, NC did a search for "Blood Gang Knowledge" and somehow ended up at the home of the whitest white girls in Whitesville. A Brooklynite was apparently looking for pediatric dental refuge, and searched for "how many teeth does a child haven." Not to be outdone, in either grasp of the English language or inanity of search, someone from Tennessee asks the all important question "how long does teeth last outside in field?" A fellow Canadian Power Pop fan stopped by looking for Sloan mp3s, though sadly we have none**. And finally, I am proud to note, if you search for Annamaria on MSN, I hold the number one and two spots. I'm famous!

And just for fun, let's look at a world map with the last 100 BOMT visitors, shall we?


We appear to be loved in the Midwest, and not sure much anywhere else! Shout out to that lone Argentinian that stopped by (Hi Argentinian!).

-------------------
*Nearly all searches for cheerleader images came from the UK--Rich, you have some explaining to do.
**Here are some Sloan mp3s to make my fellow Canada lovers happy
Who Loves Life More (Demo)
Coax Me (live)
This Charming Man (live in Halifax)
Summer's My Season (Tip o'the hat to RockInsider)

annamaria at 10:52 AM

0 spoke

2.09.2006

28 Responses Later

Jay just sent me this, and demanded that both Jen and I respond. I’m just bored enough right now that this seemed like fun!

Four jobs I’ve had in my life
  1. Department store sales clerk
  2. Tutor
  3. Glorified secretary
  4. Glorified car salesperson

Four movies I can watch over and over
  1. BBC’s Pride and Prejudice
  2. The Usual Suspects
  3. Karakter
  4. Three O’Clock High

Four TV shows I love to watch*
  1. Queer as Folk
  2. House, M.D.
  3. CSI
  4. Gilmore Girls

Four places I have been on vacation
  1. Italy/Sicily**
  2. Amsterdam
  3. Los Angeles
  4. Liverpool

Four of my favorite foods
  1. Mama G’s Lasagna
  2. Chicken Fingers (I get them everywhere!)
  3. Mint chocolate chip ice cream
  4. Soft pretzels

Four websites I visit daily
  1. pandagon
  2. gorilla vs. bear
  3. Pitchfork
  4. My online banking site

Four places I would rather be right now
  1. In bed (take that how you will)
  2. Somewhere warm (Los Angeles was nice)
  3. Liverpool (not so warm, but nice)
  4. Shopping with my 14-year-old niece

I don’t know if Jen will answer this (she’s been absent for a while and I have no idea where she is!). However, our readers can feel free to leave their answers in the comments or their own blogs.

-----------------------
*Not sure if these answers count—Queer as Folk is no longer on the air, and the only show I watch regularly is House. I do like the other two, though!
**Been all over both the island and the peninsula. And yes, they do count as distinct and separate entities!

annamaria at 2:23 PM

2 spoke

2.08.2006

Paul Weller hates you...

Mr. Clean


...Okay, maybe not. But he seems to hate everyone else. To wit, here are Paul’s thoughts on:
Singing a duet with James Blunt:"[I'd] rather eat my own shit".

Former Outstanding Achievement awardee Sir Bob "Wanker" Geldof: "What'd he win it for? Can't be for his music, man. I mean, if it's for his charity work in Africa then you can't knock it*, but Boomtown Rats, fuck off.

Sting: "Fucking horrible man. Not my cup of tea at all. Fucking rubbish. No edge, no attitude, no nothing."

and finally, Freddie Mercury: "He said he wanted to bring ballet to the working classes. What a cunt."


Well, I really can't add anything to that!

------------------
*Actually, Paul, you can knock it.

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annamaria at 1:59 PM

2 spoke

Mama G

Well, it’s been an interesting week around Casa de Genovese. On Friday afternoon, my mother was rushed to the emergency room complaining of chest pains and shortness of breath. She has a history of hypertension and atrial tachycardia, so the fear was that she was having a heart attack. Two EKGs ruled out heart attack, though her blood pressure was through the roof. She was admitted overnight, and given a stress test on Saturday. The tests revealed an abnormality, and a cardiac catheterization was ordered. She underwent the catheterization on Monday morning (apparently hospitals don’t perform these on the weekend for some completely asinine reason), and her doctor discovered that she had 80% blockage in her main artery—had it gone undetected any longer, she probably would have had a heart attack within months. Mama G had angioplasty and a stent was inserted to keep her arteries open and clear. She had been complaining of chest pains and dizziness off and on for a few months now, and the doctors are confident that these symptoms should now dissipate, if not completely disappear. She’s home now and doing well, but needless to say she gave us all a bit of a scare.

I’ve spent everyday since Friday at the hospital (which had a surprisingly decent cafeteria) and I’m beat. I’ve taken some time off work so I can spend some time with her—mostly to make sure that she sits down for once and lets someone else do the housework. My mother is a dynamo with a bum heart, so I can only imagine what she’ll do with a fully functional one!

So, you’ll excuse me if I’m not up to my normal level of snarkiness for a while; I guess I’ve realized that I’ve got more important things to attend to! Of course, with Mom’s new excess energy, I’m sure we’ll be fighting about something very stupid very soon and my usual cynicism will return in full force!

annamaria at 9:52 AM

4 spoke

2.03.2006

Friday Random Ten

Sloan


Do you hear that sound? It's a kind of dull thump followed by an exasperated sigh. That's the sound of my head repeatedly hitting my desk as I try to alleviate some of the stress caused by my co-workers today. My office is currently testing a new inventory system and for some reason I have been designated the office trainer. I have one week to make these people understand the mechanics of a drop down box, and frankly I'm not sure if I am going to make it. I'm fully expecting at some point to just scream "For fuck's sake, people! Just click on the goddamned box and pick a fucking option! Any option! I don't care!" Maybe I can frighten them into compliance, but I have a feeling all I am going to do is bring on my own heart attack at the tender age of 28. So, be patient with me, dear friends, because my stress has reached a critical level, and this is one of my only outlets to vent.

Of course, my mp3 collection must have noticed my fragile state, since it randomly generated some pretty poptastic songs for me to listen to today. If Sloan can't make me happy, not much will...

  1. Star Sign - Teenage Fanclub
  2. You're No Rock & Roll Fun - Sleater Kinney
  3. G Turns to D - Sloan
  4. Wild Horses (live) - Iron & Wine and Calexico
  5. Sally McLennane - The Pogues
  6. Big Sister's Clothes/Stand Down Margaret - Elvis Costello
  7. Jackson Cannery - Ben Folds Five
  8. Legendary - Lou Barlow
  9. World Before Columbus - Suzanne Vega
  10. Shine a Light - Wolf Parade

Your turn!

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annamaria at 10:03 AM

2 spoke

2.02.2006

New layout

The black screen and random dots were getting on my nerves, and I thought BOMT was due for a facelift. What do you think? I'm still not sure if this is the template I'm going to stick with, but it makes for a interesting change of pace... Feel free to leave compliments/insults in the comments.

annamaria at 10:03 PM

0 spoke

Oops! I almost defended Wal-Mart!

agents provocateur

I had a conversation with my Republican brother a few weeks ago, and we were shocked to find out that we actually agreed about something; I mentioned that the media focus on Wal-Mart's business practices is often unfair in that it ignores the fact that other corporations employ similar methods. I doubt that Target employees fare much better than Wal-Mart's, but since Wal-Mart is the largest employer in the United States, the focus will always be on them. Republican Brother agreed. Of course, I couldn't content myself with stopping there, and we quickly disagreed about the role that a company like Wal-Mart should play in addressing (and redressing) pay inequality, lack of reliable and affordable health care, and worker's rights. It seems to me as the largest employer in the United States, Wal-Mart has a responsibility to do better than its competitors, to behave better than its competitors. Republican Brother disagreed, but, well, he's a Republican.

But my defense of Wal-Mart was pretty tepid, since I find them to be one of the most repugnant corporations on the planet--pretty difficult for a feminist like myself to justify spending any money in a place that is currently party to the largest sexual discrimination lawsuit in the history of the EEOC. So, when three Massachusetts women decided to sue Wal-Mart for refusing to stock emergency contraception I'll admit to feeling a little smug.

But, alas, the fundies want to take me down a notch: it seems that the plaintiffs are not little Davids triumphing over the evil, corporate Goliath--they worked with several abortion rights groups prior to filing suit. The implication is that the women specifically chose to take their prescriptions to Wal-Mart knowing that the stores did not carry EC, so that they would have grounds to file suit. Well, that's pretty bad, right? I can imagine that this sort of thing is frowned upon in civil rights circles. Imagine if, during the the era of segregation, someone specifically chose to break a law, by sitting in the whites-only section of a bus for example, to prove that the law was unjust and discriminatory. Ah, if only the wonderful folks at Lifesite were around to stop Rosa Parks...

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annamaria at 8:36 PM

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Global Godbothering

Sometimes I forget that the United States isn’t the only place in the world with crazy Christians.

The other day, Twisty (patriarchy-blamer extraordinaire) wrote about Australian "godbags" who want to prevent girls from being inoculated against HPV lest they take that as license to slut around. I’m not kidding, here’s an actual quote from Senator Barnaby Joyce:
"There might be an overwhelming (public) backlash from people saying, 'don't you dare put something out there that gives my 12-year-old daughter a licence to be promiscuous',"

I know that the threat of HPV stopped me from even thinking about sex when I was a teenager. Actually, that’s a lie; when I was a teenager, I didn’t even know what HPV was. And I’m willing to bet that since there are an estimated 24,000,000 (yes, that’s 24 million) HPV positive Americans I’m not alone in my teenage ignorance. HPV is often asymptomatic, and because the virus can reside in the skin, condoms are not entirely effective in preventing it. According to the CDC, by age 50, at least 80% of women will have been infected with HPV. There are 6.2 million new HPV infections every year.

Did I happen to mention that HPV is the cause for almost all cases of cervical cancer, a disease that kills nearly 4,000 women every year? The other day I wrote about the real anti-choice agenda--controlling the lives and bodies of women. Still need proof? Senator Joyce admits to being "personally very circumspect" about whether he would inoculate any of his four daughters against HPV should the vaccine become available. He’s "circumspect" about giving them a vaccine that would virtually guarantee that they will never get cervical cancer. He can’t decide if his daughter’s lives are worth living if it means that they might (gasp!) walk down the aisle without their hymens intact. He’s wants to sacrifice women’s lives in pursuit of unattainable goal—government mandated virginity. He wants women to die. And he’s not the only one. Wendy Wright, executive vice president of Concerned Women for Patriarchy America had this to say, "it would seem to send a message that we're expecting the girls to be sexually active." Wendy Wright wants your little girls to die, too. After all, what better way to prevent women from controlling their own bodies than to remind them that even a wrapped penis can kill you, so don’t even think about fucking around until you’ve got that ring on your precious little finger. Of course, with 24 million HPV positive Americans and not a single person even pretending to think that boys should remain chaste until marriage, not even that ring will save your little girl. And don’t even think about the fact that anywhere from 1-4 in 10 American women don’t have the option of remaining abstinent—their rapists take that choice away from them.

Think about it for a second—we have the opportunity to virtually eliminate a form of cancer that kills thousands of women in the United States every year. This would be the first cancer ever eradicated, and we can do it in one generation. If every baby born today was inoculated against HPV, not one of those beautiful baby girls will ever face the threat of cervical cancer.

Do you think Senator Joyce and Wendy Wright would oppose an HIV vaccine on the grounds that it might possibly encourage girls to have sex? And, if they did, do you think anyone would think they were anything other than certifiably batshit crazy? But the fringe right aren't too concerned with HIV (after all, it only kills the godless fags, right?), but mention birth control (including abortion) and the HPV vaccine, and they've suddenly got a whole lot to talk about. Do you think its a coincidence that pregnancy and cervical cancer only affect women?

At the expense of being inexcusably longwinded, I feel the need to note that the Aussies aren’t the only other place with crazies; the Brits are pretty insane, too:
An opinion poll from January conducted by Ipsos MORI found widespread public support for greater restrictions on abortion, particularly among women. Almost 60 percent of all women polled want to see greater restrictions on abortion access. 47 per cent want to see the current limit of 24 weeks reduced, while ten percent of women want to see abortion banned entirely, "under any circumstances."

Oh sweet Lord in heaven. No abortion under any circumstances?! Rape victims should be forced to bear their rapists’ children? What about incest victims? Thirteen-year-old girls raped by their fathers, brother, uncles, teachers, neighbors? Women who will die if they carry a pregnancy to term? Women with cancer—should they have to forego chemotherapy and radiation rather than terminate a pregnancy and save their own lives? Women whose pregnancies are high risk for serious and debilitating conditions? Manic depressive women who cannot take prescribed medications for their conditions, since they run the risk of seriously harming the fetus? None of these women deserve to live? Not one of these women deserves the right to her own bodily integrity? Ten percent of Britons are prepared to issue death sentences to pregnant women without even a thought about how it might impact their families or society as a whole. Ten percent of Britons are so sure of their own moral superiority that they would deny a basic human right to women, so convinced they are that they know better than the woman whose very life is at stake about the responsible and appropriate course of action. Ten percent of Britons think they are qualified to determine whether a woman’s life is worth saving. Pro-life indeed.

I won’t even get into Italy’s banning of RU-486, the Columbian manipulation of children to uphold abortion bans, or Canadian pharmacists refusing to fill prescriptions for emergency contraception. And all that was just this week…

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annamaria at 2:07 PM

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