Yes We Might Still Can

31 01 2010

So I’ve got to be frank y’all… I didn’t really have high hopes for this address.  I had, at most, medium hopes for this address because I 1. was (am) still waiting for comprehensive HCR 2. was (am)  still waiting for a comprehensive plan to end our wars in Iraq, Afghanistan and Pakistan and 3. was (am) still waiting for DOMA to be history and for everyone to be able to ask and tell.
And also, I was all like “What in the Sam-Goody” about this whole spending freeze business.

So yeah, I was more than happy to smart-alack the State of the Union address.

To get me through this I was aided and comforted by the following players:
Heineken Light
Peaco
RHS
And the music of Funny Girl (which RHS started her FIRST viewing of two nights ago].

Let’s get this crack-alacking…

8:57PM Oh, Michelle you are a vision in purple.  The hair.  The makeup.  The Michelleness.  I shall call this look Purple Reign.

First Lady of Fabulous

RHS: I like Michelle’s short hair.
BPD: I know, right?  That is one magic hot comb.  I hope that she wears it that way when we get married.
RHS: You and I?
BPD: Uhm, sure, that’ll work too.

8:58PM I like the that all the Black People have taken to wearing their Church colors to the Chamber since Obama’s been in office.

9:05AM Who are these two old guys?  Are these really the two guys you want leading you in?

9:06PM Here he is.  Clapter ensues, but with far less rock-star fawning than the last time.  It’s hard to separate the sound of the cheers from the sound of the boos.  Even Michelle looks bored.  That’s not a good thing.  She usually gives him at least fifteen minutes before tuning out.

9:07PM
Nancy Pelosi: Look at my beautiful mother of pearl necklace.  I will choke a bitch with it if necessary.
Joe Biden: He’s so beautiful, even with all of the gray hairs.  I could cry.

9:08PM
Barack Obama: We must answer history’s call.
History: I don’t know how.  Y’all haven’t paid the phone bill in nearly ten years.

Barack Obama:
Change has not come fast enough.
Joe Biden: I hope he says, “I feel the need for speed.”  It really sends a shiver down my spine.  I’m so proud to be his Goose.

Barack Obama: “It is because of this spirit, this great decency and great strength that I have never been more hopeful about America’s future than I am tonight. Despite our hardships, our union is strong. We do not give up. We do not quit. We do not allow fear or division to break our spirit. In this new decade, it’s time the American people get a government that matches their decency, that embodies their strength.”

Chamber: This is the part where we clap.
Pelosi: Do it!
Joe Biden:  The clapping keeps me from crying.

Barack Obama: We all hated the bank bailout.  Well, not you Citibank, or you Goldman Sachs, or you, JP Morgan.  “But when I ran for president, I promised I wouldn’t just do what was popular — I would do what was necessary.”

BPD: I don’t feel like writing that line on my dry-erase board when you unveil this spending freeze crapscape.  I need to go to my happy place.
Babs: Nicky Arstein.  Nicky Arnstein.


BPD: Thanks Babs.

9:20ish
Barack Obama: “So I supported the last administration’s efforts to create the financial rescue program… As a result, the markets are now stabilized, and we have recovered most of the money we spent on the banks.  To recover the rest, I have proposed a fee on the biggest banks. I know Wall Street isn’t keen on this idea, but if these firms can afford to hand out big bonuses again, they can afford a modest fee to pay back the taxpayers who rescued them in their time of need.”

…We cut taxes.

BPD: I’m eating ramen.

Barack Obama: Let me repeat: we cut taxes.

BPD: Let me repeat: Spicy Chili Ramen.

Barack Obama:
We haven’t raised taxes on a single person.  That’s why we can’t afford the shit you want like healthcare.

9:26PM
Barack Obama: The stimulus worked.  Sort of.  “That is why jobs must be our number one focus for 2010” (not HCR, you just put that out of your pretty little heads) and that is why I am calling for a new jobs bill tonight.

Also “…tonight, I’m proposing that we take $30 billion of the money Wall Street banks have repaid and use it to help community banks give small businesses the credit they need to stay afloat. I am also proposing a new small business tax credit — one that will go to over 1 million small businesses who hire new workers or raise wages. While we’re at it, let’s also eliminate all capital gains taxes on small business investment and provide a tax incentive for all businesses, large and small, to invest in new plants and equipment.”
How ‘bout them apples?

BPD:  How small, does the business have to be?  Like, for example… this being a smart-ass thing is sort of my business.  Does that count.

Michelle Obama’s bob: Glare.
BPD: You’re right, I shouldn’t have asked.

Barack: We lost 7M jobs over 2 years.

RHS: Holy shit.
Michelle Obama’s bob: Language.

9:32PM
Barack Obama: “From the day I took office, I have been told that addressing our larger challenges is too ambitious — that such efforts would be too contentious, that our political system is too gridlocked and that we should just put things on hold for awhile.
For those who make these claims, I have one simple question:
How long should we wait? How long should America put its future on hold?”

BPD: It looks like we’re going to wait until we get rid of the misuse of the filibuster.

Barack Obama: I don’t want to pick on the banks… but I will because that’s kind of all that I’ve got going for me right now, and I want you to remember this when I tell you about the spending freeze I want to enact.

We need clean energy jobs.  “…We need more production, more efficiency, more incentives. That means building a new generation of safe, clean nuclear power plants in this country. It means making tough decisions about opening new offshore areas for oil and gas development. It means continued investment in advanced biofuels and clean coal technologies.”

BPD: This all sounds very dirty.

Barack Obama: And I’m sure that if I say the word bipartisan enough, it will be come real.

BPD: Oh, Barack, I bet you still believe in the Easter Bunny, too.

Barack Obama: We will double our exports over the next five years…

Peaco: He’s just fattening them up for the slaughter.

Barack Obama: Trade shmade.

The Chamber: Beatlemania.
Rahm Emmanuel:  Rahm Emmanuel stands for no man.

9:40PM
Barack Obama: “In the 21st century, one of the best anti-poverty programs is a world-class education. In this country, the success of our children cannot depend more on where they live than their potential.
When we renew the Elementary and Secondary Education Act, we will work with Congress to expand these reforms to all 50 states. Still, in this economy, a high school diploma no longer guarantees a good job. I urge the Senate to follow the House and pass a bill that will revitalize our community colleges, which are a career pathway to the children of so many working families. To make college more affordable, this bill will finally end the unwarranted taxpayer subsidies that go to banks for student loans. Instead, let’s take that money and give families a $10,000 tax credit for four years of college and increase Pell Grants. And let’s tell another 1 million students that when they graduate, they will be required to pay only 10 percent of their income on student loans, and all of their debt will be forgiven after 20 years — and forgiven after 10 years if they choose a career in public service. Because in the United States of America, no one should go broke because they chose to go to college. And it’s time for colleges and universities to get serious about cutting their own costs — because they too have a responsibility to help solve this problem.”

BPD: Oooh!  That sounds super sexy.
Peaco: You always were a soft touch.
RHS: Christ, Nancy Pelosi, sit down.
BPD: Nancy just got these new hips, she wants to take them for a spin.

9:47PM
Barack Obama:
I know that I’ve fucked up HCR y’all… but you need to give me just a little more time.

Babs: People, people who need people are the luckiest people in the world.

9:50PM
Barack Obama: Remember all the shit I inherited?  Doesn’t that distract you from my failures and short comings?  Bush was worse than I was!  You all still hate his mess more than you hate mine.

Republicans: BOO!
BPD: Booing the truth doesn’t make it less true.

9:51PM
Barack Obama: SPENDING FREEZE.  Just think of it as the Big Chill, or alternately, the reason why your Grandmother hides her money all around the house and doesn’t trust banks.

Babs: Is motherfucker trying to rain on my parade?
Michelle Obama’s bob:  Language.

Peaco:  This guy sure does look a lot like the scalpel guy you voted for.
BPD:  That’s just want I was thinking.

9:54PM
Barack Obama: I know some (that’s you Rachel Maddow) have said that we can’t address the deficit by freezing deficit spending when so many are still hurting.  That’s why you won’t get really screwed until next year.

Dr. Rachel Maddow: Oh, BPD you’re so dreamy!
RHS: Hunny you’re talking to yourself out loud again.

9:59PM
Barack Obama: You think that I’m screwing you with the spending freeze… the Supreme Court REALLY screwed you.  “Last week, the Supreme Court reversed a century of law to open the floodgates for special interests — including foreign corporations — to spend without limit in our elections. Well, I don’t think American elections should be bankrolled by America’s most powerful interests, or worse, by foreign entities. They should be decided by the American people, and that’s why I’m urging Democrats and Republicans to pass a bill that helps to right this wrong.”

Supreme Court Justices: Remember people, this is just like those bear drills we do.  Sit very quietly and very still and the danger will pass.

10:00PM
Barack Obama: Shit is still really gritty in Washington DC because y’all can’t get along.  And you’re killing America.
Yes, YOU.
Democrats, grow a pair.  Bo has bigger balls than you do.

Bo knows politics

“And if the Republican leadership is going to insist that 60 votes in the Senate are required to do any business at all in this town, then the responsibility to govern is now yours as well. Just saying no to everything may be good short-term politics, but it’s not leadership. We were sent here to serve our citizens, not our ambitions. So let’s show the American people that we can do it together. This week, I’ll be addressing a meeting of the House Republicans. And I would like to begin monthly meetings with both the Democratic and Republican leadership. I know you can’t wait.”

BPD: Oooh, you’re in trouble.

10:05PM
Barack Obama: Security.  Uhm… we’re kind of secure.  We could be more secure but … uhm… Quick!  Everyone, clap for Michelle!

BPD: Clapping for Michelle does in fact distract me from Pakistan and the spending freeze and the whole gays are second class citizens thing.

10:13PM
Barack Obama: This year I will work with Congress to end DODT.  Or, maybe next year.

“In the end, it is our ideals, our values, that built America — values that allowed us to forge a nation made up of immigrants from every corner of the globe, values that drive our citizens still. Every day, Americans meet their responsibilities to their families and their employers. Time and again, they lend a hand to their neighbors and give back to their country. They take pride in their labor, and are generous in spirit. These aren’t Republican values or Democratic values they’re living by, business values or labor values. They are American values.”

Joe Biden: This is the good part.  I love him.  I wonder if I can discretely get my hanky out without Nancy noticing.
Nancy Pelosi: I bet Joe doesn’t know where his hanky is and he’s going to end up snotting all over me.  I have got to switch chairs.

10:18PM
Barack Obama: I am still eloquent.  And also, I love Newsies!  Arise and seize the day.  “Let’s seize this moment — to start anew, to carry the dream forward, and to strengthen our union once more.”
Peace out homies.

~~~
In the end, I think that it was a great return to the rhetorical highs of candidate Obama but you know.  Spending freeze.  And Wars.  And DADT.  And DOMA.  And HCR.  And ramen has become a major staple of my diet.

But, all of that aside, I haven’t erased the dry-erase board yet.  Because still have hope.

I just hope the Obama administration has got hustle.





Hostile Takeover.

26 01 2010

It turns out that adding Justice Sotomayor to the Supreme Court really does make for a radical activist bench.

‘Course this is not exactly the radical that I had in mind.

As usual, Dr. Maddow does a fine job of breaking down how the ruling on Citizens [insert derisive chortle here] United v. Federal Election Commission is a giant crock of step-on-the-little-guy shit and I will pretty much use any excuse to link to her Doctorate of Awesomeness here.  She’s all smart like and I’m all: This totally sucks y’all.

But there’s something even more than just the Oh, Great, Now Coca Cola will have not only my soul but my vote too that’s getting to me.   It’s that suddenly, Coca Cola is a person now.  It has taken me nearly thirty years to become a person.   And yet in ten months with some clever legal maneuvering Coca Cola is a person now too.  Only, more of a person than me.
I’m not fantastically wealthy (yet).  I’m not international (yet).  I don’t rot your teeth right out of your head.  I’m not locked in a bitter battle against Pepsi Co. for the wallets and gullets of the world.  [yet]
But more than that.  Coca Cola (and that bastard Pepsi Co.) is a regular first class citizen.  Unlike the gays.  Coca Cola’s rights are protected and upheld under the law.  Unlike the gays.   Hell, Coca Cola and Pepsi Co. Can even marry if they’d like.  Corporations do it all of the time.  Unlike the gays.

That’s some kind of justice.





Forward to the Future

12 01 2010

Happy New Year Friends!

We have made it to the future.
Sure we don’t have flying cars and 9 hour work weeks, but we’ve still got time for that.

RHS and I rang the New Year in with some close friends and their lamb and their cheese and their Wii and their general awesomeness.  It was delightful.

I didn’t make any resolutions this year and instead, RHS and I just dove right into wedding planning.

  • We found a venue.
  • We found out that our wedding budget had been decreased by one half.
  • We stared at each other in the kitchen as I moaned, “My vision!  My vision!”
  • And then we regrouped.
  • We thought of a clever catering idea [a potluck hors d’oeuvres competition – feel free to use that].
  • And on Saturday we went to our very first Bridal Fair.

We had high hopes, it was at “hip” bar in Brooklyn (and not even the assy part of Brooklyn where the bars that are considered “hip” are) and there was free Brooklyn Lager and Prosecco and there would be music and free food to try and talks to attend.

There was also a crowd of blurry-eyed, mirthless brides and their disheveled (possibly unwashed) blahblahblah fiances.  They picked at the vendors’ wares like overstuffed vultures and flocked in their frizzy dismay here there and everywhere.  I hated them.

But mostly, I hated that we were the only identifiable same-gendered couple.  And I hated the snide looks from the other brides.  I hated that when we sat through the DIY Ceremony with Officiant seminar, the officiant (and licensed clinical psychologist) did not even acknowledge that same-gendered couples existed.  In the words of RHS, “Just because it’s not legal, doesn’t mean that the gays aren’t doing it.”

But… but we did meet a lot of cool vendors (that we can’t afford).  We were charmed by the two lovely gentlemen that were from ThreePhotographers.  They offer a great package, were as cute as buttons and really captured genuine moments in their wedding photography.

As far as caterers go, I was really excited to discover that one could fry beets like potato chips and serve them with popcorn.  Thanks Tyler, from Naturally Delicious, Inc. (Also, RHS totally thanks you for the 15 or so pomegranate martinis you gave her.)

We fell in love with the photo-booth at THE BEST WEDDING EVER and we delighted to find that there was an option in Brooklyn.  The fellas at Shootbooth, have even built their own stand-inside Bellows camera.  I am most excited about The Sidecar which has a camera mounted in a ball-pit.  Can you say 35th Birthday?  I can!

And lastly, we fell in loveLoveLOVE with Tanesha Smith-Wattley and her Small World Terrariums.  I love it so much that I use my patented WhyAren’tYouGivingMeWhatIWant stare to try and finagle one into our wedding budget.

We came away from the Fair with mixed feelings.  We met some wonderful vendors and got some good ideas for things that we might want to try and incorporate on our own.  On the other hand, most of the other brides that we ran into were just stank.  And we also left feeling a bit sad about our financial options.  But, a couple of days have passed and we have committed ourselves to moving forward.  We have a venue that we love.  We have awesome friends who have gotten excited about competing in our hors d’oeuvres competition.  And most importantly, we have each other.  We are going to throw a kick-ass party and we are going to confirm our commitment to Team Mackwell in front of our friends and family.

We will face the future together.  (And the future is now!)





Déjà BOOO

4 11 2009

It looks like it’s 2001 all over again.

  1. New Jersey and Virginia have Republican Governors¹ 
  2. Mike Bloomberg has used-car salesmanned himself into the NYC Mayor’s seat²
  3. Maine has second-class citizens³
     

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Same you can believe in.

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¹In 2001 Donald DiFrancesco succeeded Christine Todd Whitman as governor of New Jersey.  In 2001 Jim Gilmore was the governor of Virginia.

²In 2001 Mike Bloomberg switched his registration from Democrat to Republican before switching his registration to Independent in 2007 and then hoodwinking NYC citizens so that he could be eligible for a third term.

³In 2001 Maine’s partnered gay citizens were not afforded the same rights under the law as their married heterosexual counterparts.  For a brief shining moment this year that wrong was righted.  Last night citizens and neighbors in Maine voted to disenfranchise and relegate second class status to other citizens and neighbors in Maine.  Those voters chose to protect marriage at the cost of their dignity and integrity. 
That seems like too heavy a price to pay to me.





It’s all fun and games until someone gets married.

21 10 2009

So it occurred to RHS and I on Sunday as we were shoveling awesome breakfasty goodness  into our mouths having a nice Brunch Date to belatedly celebrate our 5 years of being a Team [That’s how we think of ourselves, as a Team. We even have a team name and a secret handshake.  That’s okay.  Take a moment.  It will still be true when you re-read it.] that we were less than a year away from our big come and celebrate the permanence of our relationship and bring us presents¹ party.

So yeah, we’re wedding² planning.

I know that this will be a surprise, but… I have not been planning my wedding since I was a little girl.  I’ve been planning it, seriously planning it, since Sunday.

RHS and I made lists and talked about options and made more lists and suddenly it occurred to me that I might end up with one of those god-awful wedding binders and began to panic a little bit, but then I calmed myself down by telling myself that if I had to have a wedding binder then I’d have to buy a new wedding messenger bag to carry the binder and that and the Bloody Mary made me feel a lot better.  That, and the thought that a god-awful wedding binder is kind of a tiny cost to pay to get hitched to RHS.

So yeah… wedding planning.

This means that every now and then there will be a post about the planning stages.  Posts like, Why can’t we just throw your ethics out of the window so that I can have that nice diamond ring, hunny?  Or the inevitable: People need mini-cheeseburgers more than they need crudites.  It’s a fact.

I hope that you (and RHS) can bear with me.

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¹Go look at the loading graphics of KitchenAid.com.  Those are kind of dirty, right?

²Maine has a big vote on Question 1 coming up.  Get out the word to your friends in Maine to show up and vote NO on Question 1 on November 3rd.





The Interwebs hearts the gays…

1 09 2009

At least that’s the spin that I’m putting on it.

  • Ben & Jerry’s all but admitted that they’re big ‘ol gays (and possibly married to each other!).
Hubbylicious.

Hubbylicious.

  • Hypocritical bigots make themselves look bad and hopefully get the severe lactose intolerance they deserve.
  • Ellen Degeneres tells us about the importance of outer beauty and flashes her eyes at us.
  • Rachel Maddow survives the Swine Flu and is the 2nd sexiest woman with a gun.

2nd sexiest woman with a gun.
Vodpod videos no longer available.


#1 sexiest woman with a gun.

I know shes not carrying a gun in this shot... but still, #1.

I know she's not carrying a gun in this shot... but still, 1st sexiest all the way.

Thank you, interwebs.





Wedding Gifts.

30 08 2009

So this weekend while I was Whitley Gilberting around the Berkshires I managed to have myself a lovely time at a truly beautiful wedding.

Sure the outdoors, and Massachusetts, and very little connection to the outside world, and square-dancing (Yes, ya’ll, square-dancing.  And let me just say that we can now officially check that off of the list of things that white people do that black people have yet to dominate.  Cuz, I dominated.  I’m so good after square-dancing I might need to move up a notch to dodecahedron dancing – that’s right twelve-sided and three-dee’d.) and sing-alongs and rain and doing all of the above in the rain aren’t specifically my thing but what I loved was that they were the brides’ things.

I know that sometimes being a big ‘ol gay I can get caught up in how the world is totally fucked up and get my feelings hurt by the sheer number of people trying to deny me my basic human rights and trying to dismiss the 5-year committed, monogamous, investment in the greater us, that my relationship is, as something tawdry and fringe-y and fly-by-night.
It was wonderful to go to a celebration of the union of two people, who, rather than dwell on the fact that even when they go back to Kentucky they can’t get on each other’s health insurance, decided to commune with their guests and share their love and commitment with us.   It was refreshing to be surrounded by the family and friends of the brides who could think of no greater joy than being able to be present at this event and witness this union.  I was heartened by the guests that brought their children.  I was touched by the many heterosexual couples in attendance who were aware of the privilege of their government sanctioned marriages (or upcoming marriages).  I was able to take a break from being pissed off and let them be pissed off for me.

And that revealed its own very specific privilege.  I was able to think about how nice it was that the brides got exactly what they wanted.

Ketubah and Quaker marriage contract.  But of course.
Rabbinic officiant and Episcopalian minister (who happened, in the best of the Episcopalian wisdom, to be a woman).  Why not?
Cake decorating contest during dinner instead of one big extravagantly decorated cake.  Forever hold your peace.
Man of honor.  Honorable indeed.
Photobooth?  Picture perfect.

Dance Dance Revolution.

Dance Dance Revolution.

Thats Piet (pate).  Hes great.  Hes also the Man of Honor.

RHS and I really like the Man of Honor.

These brides dont blush.

These brides don't blush.

It was the perfect wedding.
And you know what?  This happened because there aren’t, as yet, prescribed notions for weddings with brides (or grooms) of the same gender (or the same un-gender).  The brides were able to tailor their wedding to their desires because there was no pressure to conform to tradition.  What a privilege that is!  What a boon!  Everyone in attendance came away with the distinct impression that they were there because their presence was specifically and personally wanted.

And more than the great food, choice music, customized aprons and memories the greatest gift that I was given was the knowledge that when RHS and finally get into the nitty-gritty of planning our wedding (coming soon, October, 2010) we never have to question if any of our choices make sense, or will make someone uncomfortable.  We never have to worry that we aren’t playing by the rules or that we will commit some wedding faux pas.  We’ve been given the gift of total and complete freedom to share our union with the family of our choosing.  And other than my commitment to her and her commitment to me, that’s one of the greatest gifts I’ve ever received.