Saturday, March 20, 2010

Evening News: Papal Edition 3/20/10

Increasing anger at the Pope. The Catholic Church's systematic cover up of decades of abuse may be facilitating a crisis for Catholics in Europe. From the (Australian?) Times Online:

"In Austria, a poll last week indicated that almost 1(million) Catholics were considering leaving the church because of its handling of the allegations. The crisis is also spreading to Italy, where the Vatican’s influence has until now stifled any revelations. Cases have come to light in Rome and Florence."

Informal Poll for Flaming Chef readers:

Are there ANY flattering pictures of this pope?

(Photo from Agencia Brasil)

South Pole Now Hiring

Hey there chefs!

McMurdo Station in Antarctica is looking for an experienced Sous Chef for the period between September 2010 and February 2011.

This is an extremely demanding job in probably the harshest environment on the planet.

If I wasn't married with two cats and totally burned out on the food business, I'd apply myself.

(Photo Of McMurdo Station by Gaelen Marsden)

The Vernal Equinox!


I almost forgot that today is the day that if you were standing on the equator and looked up at precisely the right moment, your would see that the sun was directly overhead.

And then your eyes would burn out of their sockets.

There is a beautiful Astronomy Picture of the Day today which mentions the equinox. Go have a look, you won't be sorry.

I Always Secrete Occular Fluid at Weddings

Baltimore County District Judge G. Darrell Russell Jr., presiding over a domestic violence case, found the defendant not guilty after his wife cited spousal immunity and refused to testify against her husband.

This was after the judge paused the case to allow the couple to marry so that she could claim immunity.

...and Judge Russell performed the ceremony himself.

It just seems I don't get to Baltimore as often as I'd like.

Personal note: For those of you out there who think domestic partnership and civil unions are "good enough" for gay couples, keep in mind that spousal immunity as it applies to gay couples is still a disputed matter, even in states where marriage equality is the law of the land.

Check out Project 1138 to see some wonderful couples who are concerned (as my husband and I are) about the 1,138 federal rights that come with marriage and are barred to us because of DOMA.

(Photo of wedding rings by Petr Kratochvil)

Now We Can Race Them!

In order to study "postcopulatory sexual selection," scientists have engineered glow-in-the-dark sperm.

From Science Daily:

"...many advances in reproductive and evolutionary biology have been constrained by the inability to discriminate competing sperm of different males and by the challenges of observing live sperm inside the female reproductive tract. "


(Photo by Jen @ Your Kid Matters)

She Ruined the Plastic Ono Band!

On this day:

John Lennon and Yoko Ono were married on this day in 1969.


"It must be nice to know everything and be right all the time."
"No its not, its awful."
Holly Hunter was born on this day in 1958.

(Photo from the national archives of Canada, via Wikipedia.)

Saturday Morning News 3/20/10

The Pope: Take a letter, Maria. The Irish group One in Four deeply disappointed, yet not surprised by the Pope's Letter to Catholics in Ireland, regarding the systematic cover up of child sex abuse in that country. I was almost pleased with part of the letter that read:

"In particular, there was a well-intentioned but misguided tendency to avoid penal approaches to canonically irregular situations."

However, the context of that statement implies that the real problem was the rapid rate of secular change in society and a "misinterpretation" of Vatican II.

I'm going to have to side with those who are disappointed with the Pope.

I wish I had a Youtube clip for this. Viacom is suing Google's Youtube because unsealed court documents suggest that Google may have been aware that they were profiting off of pirated material. Oh, here's a Youtube clip for this:

So many nice things we could have picked up cheap... Greece may not be going out of business just yet. But stay tuned.

Aside to all you people out there who crave a heroic pet story. Looking for such a story on Google News, I typed in "Dog saves..." and got a drop down menu including such juicy options as, "Dog saves boy/missing girl/owner/little girl/boy from cougar attack..." on and on. I was offered a veritable cornucopia of heroic dogs from which I could choose. But I wanted a cat story, so I typed in "Cat saves..."


So I'm going to have to make something up:

Heroic cat saves owner from heart attack by napping, encouraging master to follow her example.

Friday, March 19, 2010

Afternoon News 3/19/10

(Image of St. Mary Axe & the Gherkin by David Iliff)

London's 24th annual Lesbian and Gay Film Festival opens tonight. Among the films presented is one about early 19th dyke, Anne Lister, who wrote her diary in secret code.

Study looks at the specifics of LGBTQ Boomers. Among other things, they retire later and worry more about being able to take care of themselves as they age, compared to the general population.

Scientists in Germany invent a real live invisibility cloak, but it is 4 trillionths of an inch wide.

18-year-old high school student Erica DeBenedictis from Albuquerque, NM wins $100,000 in Intel's 2010 science talent search. She designed a software navigation system that helps spacecraft travel more efficiently within the solar system.

$30,000 Scholarship for McMillen


Constance McMillen who is suing her prom-canceling school board, has just received a $30,000 college scholarship from talk-show super lesbian Ellen DeGeneres.

One time...

Back when my Mom was regional President of PFLAG, Ellen's mom Betty stayed at my parents' house. I was away at school at the time so I didn't get to meet her, but she sounds like a super neat lady.

If the Flaming Chef could, he would kiss Ellen on the cheek like a good brother, but only if that was OK with her.

The Flaming Chef Finally Talks About Food

The night before last, Dr. Snickerdoodle and I shared with our guest a dry-roasted pork shoulder which is super easy to make.

1. Just rub the outside of the roast with crushed garlic, thyme, sage, rosemary, salt and fresh ground pepper.

2. Let the roast marinate for at least twenty minutes (in the fridge of course) but overnight is even better.

3. Brown on all sides (about 2 min. per side) in a hot pan, then roast the shoulder in a preheated 350° oven for 2 and a half hours.

4. Voila!

The fat will be melty and yummy and the meat will be falling apart and tender.

This roast goes equally well with sweet potatoes, mashed potatoes or any root vegetable. Broccoli, spinach, asparagus or a simple, green salad are all lovely accompaniments.

For a wine recommendation, Wicker Parker has a charming review of some Oregon Pinot Noirs that, I think, would go great with pork and they won't break the bank.

Go. Eat.

(image from coolrain)

Statement from Get Equal's Robin McGehee: Time for Action

(Via Joe My God)

In the spirit of being calm and reasonable, here are some words from a woman who got arrested yesterday for civil disobedience:

I am glad to see us Queerfolk getting nice n' uppity.

If we're going to be disobedient, we might as well be civil.

N'est pas?

Chris Geidner is Calm and Smart: A Blog Recommendation

Regarding my tendency to shake my tiny fist in rage, I would like to offer a reading recommendation to the screaming hordes who would kill themselves instantly if I stopped blogging for even one second.

Law Dork has some great pictures from yesterday, which was a major one for LGBTQ activism.

There were the Don't Ask Don't Tell hearings in Congress.

There was Dan Choi and James Pietrangelo's civil disobedience and arrest at the White House.

Also, members of the new group Get Equal got arrested as a result of their sit-in at Speaker Nancy Pelosi's office, demanding that she call a floor vote on the Employment Non-Discrimination Act.

Chris has marvelous photos of all three of these events.

Chris Geidner's blog, Law Dork is well worth keeping tabs on. He is the senior political writer with DC's Metro Weekly and his level-headed analysis provides necessary perspective on some of the angrier blogs out there.

Born on This Day 3/19

Tough-as-nails, statuesque, shy, guitar playing Marjorie Monaghan.

Science fiction mainstay and all around fun-to-watch actress.

(Image from

Homophobic, Macho Schmuck Testifies before Congress

Testimony on the hill thursday by Gen John "Jack(ass)" Sheehan implied that EU military policies allowing gays to serve openly was what led to the genocide in Srebrenica.

To paraphrase Sen. Carl Levin's response to Jackass: "Get bent."

The Dutch Caretaker Defense Minister Eimert van Middelkoop also had some choice words for General Jackass, describing the claim as "damaging and not worthy of a soldier."

(Wong/Getty Image via Reuters)

Morning News 3/19/10

Surprise! The House of Representatives should be voting on Health Care Reform Sunday and the Republicans want to kill the sucker dead. Henry Waxman cautioned wavering democrats, "Members who think they have a tough race are not going to find security in voting no," he said. "If this bill doesn't pass, they are going to be wiped out."

Report from the CBO places HCR at $940 billion, which upsets a lot of people. Interesting to note how (comparitively) easily the nation has spent more than that on the wars in Iraq and Afganistan. It is easier to spend money on killing people than it is to make sure that everyone has health care.

"Wouldn't you rather play a nice game of chess?" The U.S. and Russia are finishing up a strategic arms reduction treaty. I'm sorry, what decade is this?

Mississippi Rock Lobster still fighting for the right to go to prom. Constance Mcmillan's school canceled it's prom rather than allow her to attend. Battling facebook pages:

Let Constance go to the Prom with her date: 363,803 fans.

Don't let Constance take her date to the prom: 79 fans.

The Smoking toddler returns. A baby born when the FDA first proposed bans on marketing cigarettes to children is almost old enough to smoke now that the FDA is ready to enact the ban.

Thursday, March 18, 2010

Evening News 3/18/10

Fess Parker died today at age 85.

"Born on a mountain top in Tennessee
Greenest state in the land of the free
Raised in the woods so's he knew every tree
Kilt him a bar, when he was only three
Davey, Davey Crocket, king of the wild frontier..."

--from the Ballad of Davey Crocket
Music by George Bruns
Lyrics by Tom W. Blackburn

You can hear the whole song here.

The Democrats are still considering passing health care reform.

More on Dan Choi's arrest. I heard earlier that he crashed the HRC rally where Kathy Griffin was speaking before his arrest. She didn't mind though, tweeting later, "I dig that dude."

More about Get Equal, the group that staged Choi and Pietrangelo's disobedience. They also staged a sit-in in Nancy Pelosi's office today. They said they weren't going to leave until Pelosi committed to bring the Employment NonDiscrimination Act to the floor for a vote, or until they are arrested.

It reminds me of the good old days.

Re: The Eternal Battle Between the Good, and the Not so Good

My dear friend Wicker Parker points out a lot of things that I missed, ignored and otherwise skipped in my post about Robert Kagan yesterday. His comments under that piece are a must read and I deserved his forceful, yet polite reminder to think before I post.

It is with a humble heart that I am reminded that Kagan is an unreliable douche who (among other things) was a cheerleader for the Bush Administration's fabricated hunt for WMD's in Iraq, even after everyone on the planet finally came around to the fact that it was all horseshit. Also correct is that Kagan makes a lot of assertions in his piece, and quotes no sources.

Hmm? That should have told me something right there. Kagan is an ideologue, bent on painting Obama in the worst possible light, and I jumped right on to the bandwagon.

I have been so impatient with the apparent lack of urgency from the Obama White House, that I went off half cocked about an issue that really gets me riled (DADT) and used for my source a right - wing mouthpiece who, obviously has an axe to grind. And Kagan wasn't even talking about DADT.

My apologies.

In my fight for equality, I must remember who MY allies are.

After eight years of the worst president in history, it is nice to have someone in the oval office who isn't using homophobia for political gain. Obama may not be moving as fast as I like, but at least he is moving. For that I am grateful.

As Chuck advised me last night:

"Calm the fuck down."

I will try.

Lunch and Possible Medical Breakthroughs

First a brief description of lunch:

Larry and I had a meat attack today at Slabtown Ribs and BBQ here in Portland. The lunch special rib sampler was just the right amount: Way too much. I will definitely go back. The coleslaw was super too.

Now a note from Mr. Science:

Gene Therapy.

Larry shared with me some promising new research in gene therapy that has particularly dramatic possibilities in terms of treating AIDS.

"Zinc fingers" are a portion of the body's genetic machinery that recognizes certain sequences of genes in order to turn the sequences on and off. The tiny "finger" seems to act as a switch that determines which genes are expressed or not.

Last December the New York Times reported on this, describing a man who was essentially cured of AIDS. I'm not a scientist, but it looks as though the man was given an immune system transplant via bone marrow from a man who had natural immunity to AIDS.

Clinical trials are either under way, or will be soon and I will post more as I learn more.

Any science types out there who would like to clarify or correct any of my analysis are encouraged to do so.

(Image by Richard Wheeler Zephyris.)

Garden State Gettin' Rowdy: Today!

Lambda legal today, officially petitioned the New Jersey State Supreme Court to remedy that state's legislature's failure to remedy its flawed civil union law.

The San Diego Gay and Lesbian News has a good overview of the time line in the case, as well as a description of the petition:

"...Hayley Gorenberg, deputy legal director at Lambda Legal (said) "Civil unions are a failed legislative experiment in providing equality in New Jersey - marriage equality is the only solution.""

I used to live in NJ, which was also one of the first states to grant women the right to vote in 1790. That right was revoked less than twenty years later.

Sound familiar?

Let's keep our fingers crossed and wish our Garden State brothers and sisters good luck.

Well Spoken Cutie Pie, Definitely Arrested

In an update to my earlier post, Lt. Dan Choi was arrested today while protesters chanted:

"What do we want?
When do we want it?

I have embedded the footage Joel Silberman uploaded to youtube.

There is some more footage on Joel Silberman's youtube channel of Choi and fellow soldier James Pietrangelo leading the protestors in the pledge of allegiance. Check it out and rate it and thanks Joel, for posting it.

Well Spoken Cutie Pie, Possibly Arrested

Towleroad reports that Lt. Dan Choi has handcuffed himself to the White House fence to protest DADT and may be getting arrested right this minute.

I love that well-spoken, cutie pie.

I'll update later today.

(Photo by SeanMD80)

Happy Birthday Mr. Chips!

It is Robert Donat's 105th birthday today. He won the 1939 Best Actor Oscar for his role in "Goodbye, Mr. Chips!" over Clark Gable's sexy and brutish performance as Rhett Butler in "Gone With the Wind."

Toe Tappin' Ticklers

With a hat tip to Little Larry, here's a link (via SFgate) to a cute, little cartoon from Mark Fiore that skewers "family values" politicians who turn out to be gay themselves. Includes "tickled-to-be-here" Eric Massa and "toe-tappin'" Larry Craig among others.

(Confidential to Larry: Looking forward to lunch today. Meat!)

Morning News 3/18/10

The Flaming Chef (pictured, right) filled out his census form this morning, officially noting that he is married to Dr. Snickerdoodle (left). Can't help lovin' that man o' mine.

Mary Douglas Glasspool was confirmed yesterday as the Episcopal Church's first lesbian bishop. She is also the first woman to lead the Episcopal Church in Los Angeles. Atta girl!

Brian Egleston, Roland Dunbrack Jr. and Dr. Michael J. Hall have released a study showing that gay people are systematically barred from participating in a great number of clinical trials, for no good reason.

(Via Americblog Gay) Let's jump on the Blogswarm bandwagon and call Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi, politely but firmly demanding that the house pass ENDA.

Her phone number is: (202) 225 -4965

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Garden State Gettin' Rowdy

Lambda Legal will reveal its NJ State Supreme Court Strategy tomorrow (Thanks Towleroad).

I would like to provide a little heads up on what I know about this very interesting situation.

First, New Jersey began offering domestic partnerships in 2003, which are separate and unequal to marriage. When challenged on this in 2006, the NJSC ruled that same sex couples deserve equal rights, but they fell just short of ruling that marriage equality would be the law in that state. Instead they opted for civil unions, which they felt were, I don't know, less unequal.

The Supremes decided that it was up to the State Legislature to handle the details and ensure equality. But after several years of inadequate civil unions, the legislature, earlier this year failed in its duty to fix the problem.

So Lambda is going back to court and we'll find out what they have in mind tomorrow.

My prediction: I think that Lambda will demand that the State Supreme Court of NJ enact marriage equality without the legislature's input.

I will keep you posted.

(PS I hate to brag, but I made that New Jersey rainbow map myself and I'm pretty proud of it.)

The Eternal Battle Between the Good, and the Not-so-Good.

The intertubes are abuzz with Robert Kagan's analysis of Obama's apparent foreign policy stance. Suck up to your enemies and piss off your allies.

Sound familiar?

As I've watched the President hem, haw and delay over his promise to repeal Don't Ask Don't Tell, I'm left with a familiar feeling. Delaying is a gimme to the fundamentalist, homophobic right wing, allowing them to whip their base into a frothy mix of hateful opposition.

It is a similar dynamic. Screw your allies and accommodate your enemies. So here's my question:

Who are Obama's real friends?

The right wing in this country will never accept him and his progressive base is becoming less and less interested in his pretty speeches every day.

I had such hope on inauguration day and I still want Obama to do what he said he would do. But it will take a miracle for me to believe in him again.

Is anyone else out there reminded of Jimmy Carter? I mean, just in terms of profound disappointment.

Malaise forever.


(Hat tip to Dr. Snickerdoodle.)


Nothing like some brightly colored candy to cheer us all up after a morning of dreadful, global homophobia. From Wikipedia:

"The earliest known appearance of the modern jelly bean was during the American Civil War when William Schrafft of Boston promoted sending the candy to soldiers in the Union Army."

I've always been a fan of seasonally available pectin eggs, which I can only find around Easter. They have a more delicate flavor than regular jelly beans and their hard, candy coating often has a beautiful, speckled coloring.

Gaze at the beans and feel your troubles melt away.

Help out a Couple of Men...

...whose only crime is that they love each other.

Consider sending letters of support to the Malawi gay couple who were arrested for getting engaged.

Simple postcards of support will make a huge difference and only cost 98 cents from the US. Let them know that the whole world is thinking about them.

The ILGHRC reports that they are being held separately, so send one to each:

Tiwonge Chimbalanga
Chipiri Prison
PO Box 30117
Chichiri, Blantyre

Steven Monjeza
Chipiri Prison
PO Box 30117
Chichiri, Blantyre

Homophobia in Turkey

Women and Family Affairs Minister Aliye Selma Kavaf remains under fire from Turkish gay rights groups who are totally pissed off that she referred to gayness as "...a disease (that) should be treated."

Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan has refused to reprimand Kavaf because his political party is pretty damn conservative.

The larger implications of this kerfuffle include European Union concerns that Turkey is not serious about signing on to member state agreements regarding basic human rights, which are requirements for joining the EU.

Morning News 3/17/10

Happy Homophobe...I mean St. Patrick's day!

Department of understatement. Pope to address abuse in letter. "The pope’s comments on the scandal in Ireland came a day after a top Vatican official acknowledged on Tuesday that, with only 10 people handling such cases, his office might not be adequate for the task."

Ha ha. Family Values Candidate Hiram Monserrate (expelled from the New York senate for slashing his girlfriend's face with a broken bottle) defeated by Jose R. Peralta.

Republicans criticize Democrats: In order to pass health care reform, the Democrats are considering doing what the Republicans have been doing for years. But you see, now that the Democrats are doing it, it is no fair!

SF Chronicle reports statistical dead heat between Gubernatorial candidates Jerry Brown and billionaire, bigot, snotbag Meg Whitman.

Born on This Day 3/17

Bayard Rustin, 1912.

"The question of social change should be framed with the most vulnerable group in mind: gay people."

Quaker. Super influential civil rights activist and friend of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Rustin helped plan and execute the Montgomery bus boycotts and was the prime organizer of the 1963 March on Washington for Jobs and Freedom. He was even involved in the Free India Movement before India gained it's independence from Britain and helped guide Dr. King toward Gandhi's philosophy of non-violence.

Rustin's obituary from the New York Times on August 25th, 1987 is an interesting period piece, carefully skirting the fact that he was gay until the third to the last paragraph, where his 1953 arrest on a morals charge is briefly discussed.

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Introducing Kevilu Productions

My post earlier today referencing the 4.4 Magnitude Earthquake that rocked southern California this morning and, more importantly, the late, great Lana Turner (who starred in the blockbuster, 1974 disaster movie "Earthquake") prompted Flaming Chef reader Kevilu to write to the Flaming Chef with a movie recommendation of his own.

Brace yourselves for the tawdry glory that is 1966's "Madame X," starring Lana herself!

Lana Turner plays Holly Parker, a poor shopgirl who marries a wealthy socialite (John Forsythe) with a domineering mother (Constance Bennett) who, not-so-secretly detests her son's new wife. After the accidental death of her secret lover (Ricardo Montalban), Holly flees to the skiddiest, of skid rows and becomes a drunken wreck. (Type casting, am I right?)

Years later she encounters an asshole who learns of her past and tries to blackmail her, assuming that she will protect her (ex) husband, who now has political ambitions. So she shoots the bastard (atta girl!) and loses her powers of speech. (Well, wouldn't anyone?)

You're not going to believe this, but here's the kicker:

The lawyer assigned to defend her in her murder trial is none other than her own son, played by an absolutely dreamy Keir Dullea, and he has no idea who she is! How the hell will this story resolve itself? Watch the damn thing and find out.

My Mom made me watch this movie when I was a kid and I loved every minute of it. I've said it before and I'll say it again, "Thanks for making me gay Mom!"

Over-the- top melodrama like this is a profound pleasure. Let us all slap our hands together in thanks to our very own Kevilu.

(Confidential note to Kevilu: These are the options, Lana and Joan?)

Afternoon News 3/16/10

A "Blood Protest" Today in Thailand seems "unlikely to solve Thailand's immediate problems." No offense, but it also looks pretty gross.

Corey Haim laid to rest today in Toronto. We'll miss you Lucas.

If you keep eating that junk, it'll kill you dead. First Lady Michelle Obama speaks to American Grocery Manufacturers today and asks them to ease up on making foods "that are sweeter, richer, and saltier than ever before."

Queers still invisible to the US Census, but we're making a teensy bit of progress.

Scientists find amphipod, squid deep below the Antarctic ice where they didn't expect to find anything.

We Hate Congress, Sort of...

A Wall Street Journal/NBC News poll out shortly shows that 77% of Americans disapprove of the job Congress is doing. While the public seems to be evenly divided about replacing their own representatives, along with the rest of Congress.
There should be some good analysis over at soon, so I'll post more after I've had time to put on my superfantastic - insight underpants.

National Marriage Organization Exhumes Corpse of Anita Bryant

Princeton NJ – In a bold new move designed to reinvigorate the fight for traditional marriage, the corpse of Anita Bryant was wheeled into the conference room of the Motel Six here this morning and propped up near a table of complimentary muffins. A spokesperson for the National Marriage Organization described the divorced former beauty queen’s remains as a “great addition to our army of the undead, fighting for family values in America’s heartland.”

Responding to accusations that the bankrupt, gay–bashing singer is not dead but currently residing in Edmond, Oklahoma, a NMO spokesman conceded that to live in Edmond, Oklahoma is “largely indistinguishable” from being dead and that the alleged corpse of Anita Bryant could only be described as an “Anita Bryant type.”

I Myself, Was a Baby Gay

Invented in 1923 by Leo Gerstenzang, Q tips were originally named, "Baby Gays." There's a bit more about this over at but I think I've told you everything that matters.

Prop 8 Update 3/16/10

Firedoglake is reporting from Judge Walker's courtroom on this morning's proceedings regarding the disclosure of various, anti - prop 8 groups' campaign information.
My two cents: Go ahead and disclose. We've got nothing to hide.
Apparently, no liveblogging will be allowed, but Teddy Partridge will have commentary as soon as possible.
I will post updates later in the day.

Update: 1:00PM

Hearing concluded. Hard to say what it means. ACLU and EQCA apparently unpersuasive in their claims. Plaintiff attorney took no position on disclosure.

The only concrete info I see here is that we should get a couple weeks notice for the scheduling of closing arguments.

Stay tuned to me, Prop 8 Trial Tracker and Firedoglake for consistent updates.

I've Always Been Good To You People!

Last night at my Big, Gay Yoga Class, my friend Paul and I discussed the merits of straight people. Before you jump all over my narrow-mindedness, I would like to point out that some of my best friends are straight.
The money quote for me was Paul's comment:
"Walking down my street sometimes, I look into their windows and think, "Well, somebody has to live in all the ugly houses.""

Department of Huh?

The recent kerfuffle over the child of lesbian parents' who will not be able to re-enroll at Sacred Heart of Jesus Catholic school in Denver has been a real noodle scratcher for me.
It is a bit like our fight over Don't Ask, Don't Tell. I don't think there should be a military at all, but as long as we've got one, anyone should be able to join.
N'est pas?
It is incomprehensible to me why anyone would want to raise their kids in the Catholic faith, let alone a Catholic school. Even more unfathomable is the idea that a lesbian couple would want to do so. But as long as that is what they want, I think they should be allowed.

With a Name Like Smuckers...

...the excuse had better be good!

With a hat tip to Dr. Snickerdoodle, I wanted to mention the ongoing controversy over Johnny Weir's exclusion from Stars on Ice.
Apparently the flamboyantly fantastic Mr. Weir isn't family friendly enough for the likes of Smuckers.
Well! I never...

Comments on the Flaming Chef

Just an aside to the screaming hordes who have been unable to post comments on this site.
I'm talkin' to you Charles.
I think I fixed the problem so that anyone can leave comments now.
The billions of you who are dying to chime in, can now do so.
I think.

On This Day - March 16th

1926 Robert Goddard launches the first liquid - fueled rocket.

1988 Oliver North and John Poindexter are indicted in the Iran Contra Affair.

Better late than never: 1995 Mississippi ratifies the 13th Amendment, finally abolishing slavery.

James Madison, 4th President of the United States was born on this day in 1751.

Marlin Perkins, Mutual of Omaha's Wild Kingdom pimp, popped out of his Mom on this day in 1905.

Today's special mention: Happy 99th Birthday Patricia Nixon! 1911

"Try not looking like Tricia Nixon reviewing the troops!"

(Name that quote for a superspecialbonusprize!)

Monday, March 15, 2010

The Slowly Moving Turtle Mobile That is Progress

What a great kid.

If you haven't already heard of the 10-year-old boy who refused to recite the pledge of allegiance until marriage equality is the law of the land, here he is.

He's even got a few choice words for President Obama.

I spotted this over on Joe.My.God. Thanks, Joe!

Edward Everett Horton - Glorious Second Banana

Today's fabulous supporting player's voice will be instantly recognizable to anyone who remembers the Fractured Fairy Tales segment of the Rocky and Bullwinkle show.
For the rest of us (whose mothers actually tried to make us gay by exposing us to the golden age of Hollywood films) will know him from most of the Fred Astaire, Ginger Rogers dance pictures from the Depression Era.
Snooty, effete, fussy and sour, Horton was one of the handful of actors who regularly played gay characters (even though they were never identified as such). Always a side kick, a best friend and foil, his distinctive face, and unmistakable voice always made me feel good when he put in an appearance.
Check him out in Lost Horizon (1937), Holiday (1938) and It's a Mad Mad Mad Mad World (1963).

Planet, Schmanet, Janet!

Last Saturday, March 13th the Greenwood Space Travel Supply Company held their second annual "Pluto is a Planet" protest march in Seattle.

Pluto was demoted to the status of a dwarf planet at the IAU (International Astronomical Union) summit in Prague in 2006. This is an insult to one of my favorite planets and to a great hero of science, Clyde Tombaugh (pictured). Tombaugh discovered planet Pluto on Tuesday, Feb. 18th, 1930.

The IAU ruled in response to Michael Brown's discovery of Xena in 2003, that a planet is "a celestial body orbiting a star or stellar remnant that is massive enough to be redounded by its own gravity, is not massive enough to cause thermonuclear fusion, and has cleared its neighboring region of planetesimals."


I'm not a scientist, but doesn't that mean that Uranus Neptune is not planet, since it hasn't cleared Pluto out of its neighboring region? (Pluto and Uranus's Neptune's orbits cross each other, as a matter of fact.)

Take that, IAU jerkwads!

Visit the Greenwood Space Travel Supply Company site for all sorts of angry, Pluto- related schwag. Wear your "Pluto is a Planet," T - shirt with pride.

This injustice cannot stand, man.

(Hat tip to Snickerdoodle, AKA Dr. Brent Zenobia - super genius.)

Update/Correction: Of course, Pluto crosses Neptune's orbit, not Uranus's. But it is so much more fun to type and say: "Uranus, Uranus, Uranus!" (Snickerdoodle saves the day again.)

WYNC Radio Lab Kicks Ass

Time for a shout out to one of my favorite radio shows. If you love science and you've never listened to Radiolab from WNYC, you really must.

Anyone who watches "The Simpsons" knows that "stochastic" can be defined as: "pertaining to a process involving a randomly determined sequence of observations." I recommend starting with Radiolab's show devoted to Stochasticity. It will hook you from the first story about English girl Laura Buxton, who sent a balloon into the air and changed her life forever.

Jad Aboumrad and Robert Krulwich's explorations will surprise and entertain you. Radiolab is full of engaging, human stories and always offers a compelling debate about the ways in which human beings assign meaning to the world around us.

If you like the show, which you will, consider pledging to support Radiolab and helping them keep their show on the air.

Go, now!

Gay Marriage = Horse Fucking

Americablog Gay, Joe My God, Pam's House Blend and just about everyone else is talking about Arizona GOP Senate Candidate JD Hayworth's recent statement equating Gay Marriage to Horse Fucking.
Um, guys? Don't put your damage on me pal.
This reminds me of Dan Savage's story about the real horse fucker he spoke to who got indignant when Dan asked whether he fucked lady horses or gentleman horses.


Monday Morning News 3/15/10

"Do you like films about gladiators?" Peter Graves shuffles off this mortal coil.

Stand up and be counted. The 2010 Census starts arriving in the mail today. This is the constitutionally mandated survey used, among other things, to allocate representation and funding by the federal government. From the AP:
"In 2000, the Census Bureau for the first time had a nationwide overcount of 1.3 million people, mostly from duplicate counts of more affluent whites with multiple homes. Still, 4.5 million people were ultimately missed, mostly lower-income blacks and Hispanics."

Reps. Conyers and Nadler introduce housing nondiscrimination legislation in congress. Good luck guys.

Gay activist, Rev. Robert Carter dies.

Trans woman marrying another woman in California, rather than her home state of Nevada. From the SF Chronicle:
"While both states prohibit same-sex marriage, officials in California said they consider Severson a man because that's what her birth certificate says. But officials in Nevada said they consider Severson a woman because that's what her driver's license says."
Way to go, government officials.

NSW government recognizes a human being free of gender.
"Zie (a gender non - specific pronoun) goes on: “I wonder if we in Western culture would have more options for happiness if we too had permission not simply to be of one gender or the other, but also to be of both genders, if such was our nature.""
(Hat tip to Jim.)

Sunday, March 14, 2010


Well, steak tonight. These are steaks I purchased from a handsome young man who came to my door a few months ago and sold me a bunch of frozen meat. Never buy frozen meat from a door - to - door salesman just because he turns you on.
We had a super time over at Linda and Jim's house where we drank several lovely cocktails in honor of Linda's departed Grandmother. So, I've already had two Maker's Mark Manhattans today, which is probably enough but, times being what they are, who am I to deny myself more booze?
We could conduct a poll, but public opinion won't stand between me and the destruction of what's left of my liver.

Update: 3/15/10
Dinner sucked last night. Neither one of us finished our steaks. I repeat: Never purchase frozen meat from a door - to - door salesman, no matter how cute he is.

Super Crappy Sunday Movie Recomendation

The Lost Skeleton of Cadavra is a loving homage to every crappy horror film ever produced.
Schlocky, percussive opening credits (influenced by the collected works of shlockmeister William Castle) tell you everything you need to know about what is coming. Earnest, painfully awkward dialogue, economically produced special effects and a foray into the eternal battle between the good, and the not - so - good.
Pop some corn, find some candy and procure yourself a hard, stiff drink. The Lost Skeleton of Cadavra transforms dreadful sci - fi into splendid music and you won't be sorry if you spend an evening basking in its tawdry glory.

Homophobia is a business

The National Organization for Marriage's recent troubles with Maine's state election commission demonstrates the increasing troubles that professional homophobes face in America today.

I have said it before and I will say it again: As much as we are fighting to change the laws in this country, we are working to make professional homophobia an unprofitable business model.

If we can establish on the federal level that LGBT people are a minority, deserving basic protections; we will go a long way towards removing the economic incentive for professional haters (such as Ms. Gallagher, pictured above) to practice "hate for a living."

Homophobia will not go away when we pass ENDA, defeat Prop 8, repeal DADT and kill DOMA but once we achieve these goals, the machinery of the state will no longer aid our enemies.

What we are fighting for, as much as changing minds, is to change the balance of power that sexual minorities face as we struggle for equality throughout the legal system.

I love being wrong

Pam's House Blend has a great story about the recent New Hampshire town votes determining whether or not the issue of marriage equality would be referred to that state's voters. Based on the March 9th results, it looked as though the people would cast their ballots on this matter, but current results are that 77 percent of the people want to keep marriage equality in place without the need for a statewide vote.

Sunday Blogging? 3/14/10

I heard that blogging on Sunday makes baby Jesus cry.
Better not risk it.
But just for good measure, the above picture is Scott Thompson in full drag as HRH Queen Elizabeth II.
We're off to dim sum with the family, then over to our friends' Linda and Jim's house for an impromptu shindig/wake.