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Friends-only journal

Friends only, etc. Comment if you're interested.

The basics:
- I talk mainly about GLBT rights, feminism, sexuality, law, the rare TV shows I'm into, and my personal life (the latter dominates my posts increasingly.) I never expect people to agree with me because this is "my journal". I will never defriend/refuse to friend because someone has different views. [For people here from q_r, my journal is NOT a personal safe space, and I am willing to be strongly challenged on anything I might post.] Civilized discussion is one of the finer things in life.
- I don't post a lot of graphics and I almost never do memes, but I do have long text posts, and I rarely LJ cut. If this is going to be a big problem for you, then...don't add me to your flist.
- If you friend me without letting me know, odds are high that I will not notice and will not friend you back. You may defriend me at will. I may do the same to you. It will not be ugly, and there will be no drama or discussion about it.

Rev. 1/15/04, 1/11/05, 3/18/06, 7/16/06, 1/28/09 ('cause I am a dork who likes to remember dates)

Just realized...

...that last month (October 2010) was my nine year anniversary on LiveJournal. Wow.


Who on my flist is using it right now? And does anyone have an extra invite code they'd be willing to message me?

Very steep flist cut

I removed a full half of my LJ friends list last night (and unjoined more than half the communities to which I belong), which represented some much needed maintenance. I looked at it closely, and found that:

(1) There were people I hadn't talked to in years;
(2) There were people whose main LJ interest is fandom, which isn't something I do anymore;
(3) There were people whose screennames I didn't recognize, where I literally had no idea how or why those people got onto my flist (which could be because they did name changes at some point after we stopped talking);
(4) There were people who appear to have left LJ/stopped updating their journal 1-3 years ago; and
(5) There were abandoned journals of friends who have moved on to new usernames.

Obviously, nothing personal was intended re: those removed, and since they were uniformly people who hadn't commented on my journal in years (and vice versa), I can't imagine that anyone would have particularly strong feelings about it.

I'm hoping that at my flist's current size (under 50 people), I'll actually be able to follow people's journals on a regular basis. I'd like to go back to reading my flist for the first time in ~ 3 years (rather than occasionally clicking over to a very few people's journals.) But I'm not sure whether it'll happen. After more than seven years on LJ, it's possible that this online journaling gig has run its course; I suppose time will tell.

Left behind...?

Before I put an end to this strange Saturday night insomnia (seriously, every other night I'm in bed by midnight, but Saturday, if I'm not out, I can't seem to get to bed), a comment on this whole LJ thing:

When I started with LiveJournal six years ago, my purposes were to (1) see if I could keep a diary in this format (I've never been able to keep a traditional paper diary) and (2) try out new ideas that I wasn't comfortable sharing with the entire world, but was somehow okay with sharing with a select group of virtual strangers (e.g. new thoughts about Judaism, thoughts about my then-crush, etc.) It was like that from 2001 to 2003. In 2004, I discovered Queer as Folk, then Buffy and Angel...and the purpose of my journal suddenly shifted. All of a sudden, I had a friends list of several dozen to a hundred people (I always tried to cap it around 100), and most of us had Interests (read: Obsessions) in common. Suddenly, every post was about Brian and Justin or Brian and Michael or Buffy and Spike, and those that were not were about a few of my non-fandom passions, law, Judaism, and (ultimately) civil rights issues with a strong focus on gay rights. (The last issue was a passion shared by the QAF fandom, broadly speaking, so even that seemed to tie into fandom.)

As with all communities created by fandom, the QAF fandom in due course sailed into the West, and I was so late to BtVS and AtS that I never tried to join their fandoms. For a time, I lived at the edges of fandom, vicariously delighting in the vidding efforts of kitkatbyte, f1renze, sockpuppett, sisabet and so on - but as I was never destined to complete a vid with Premiere, that quasi-fandom sailed into the West for me, particularly when the wonderful f1renze and I both finished our graduate programs and got swept up into the wonders of post-degree living (she was really my link into that world.)

In time, I added my good friends from HoF and b77, eagerly anticipating that they would be my continued link to LJ. But the reality is that I already see them on our native messageboard turf, and though it is always a delight to see them in multiple locales, they don't link me to LJ (in the sense that I don't need to come to LJ to see most of them, if that makes sense.) In the meantime, my QaF friends - those who are still on my flist and vice versa - have moved on to a wide variety of fandom endeavors.

And here is where I feel - in those few moments I have to browse my flist - a wave of nostalgia, a twinge of angst, a sensation of being left behind. You see, these few works of entertainment - from LOTR (in a class of its own, the books that is) to QAF/AtS/BtVS - they were special to me. The truth is that I am not cut out to bounce easily from fandom to fandom. I do not lightly fall head over heels for a TV show or movie (the truth is that I have probably been to the movies roughly 5 times since *QAF* ended, and have not gotten into ANY other TV shows, unless you count TDS/TCR. And even there, I cannot relate to the fangirlish enthusiasm of the fandom, though I do watch those fake news shows religiously.)

So for me, the moments that I spent playing within these fandoms on LJ were special. To write QAF meta, eagerly wait for the next vid collaboration from f1renze and kitkatbyte, receive an outpouring of hundreds of comments in a "love meme" responsive to fandom drama, argue over whether Gale/Randy RPS was ethical, stand in line for hours to OMG MEET BRIAN - er, Gale ;), wait for the next spoiler installment from bigboobedcanuck...these moments were at once fun, childish, light-hearted, immature, and just plain "oh hell, you're only young once, why not be a fangirl."

And yet, for me, they represented a one time experience. I have a very clear sense that that part of my life will not repeat, nor would I want it to, despite the nostalgia. So why, then, do I feel this wistful sense of being "left behind" when I click over to the journals of my old QAF friends and see how they've found new TV shows to enthuse over? I don't know.

More importantly, LJ has always served various purposes in my life. So it could be that the time that LJ served as a fandom networking tool has come to a close. And yet I have struggled for months to return to viewing LJ as nothing more than a journal. Now that I have so many dozens of people on my flist, then surely I have an opportunity to touch on something relevant to their lives or interests. But what would that be? There is no longer a common thread.

And so I am forced to accept that the only common thread (such as it is), is that my (virtual or real) life intersected at some point with the lives of each person on this list. That is a tenuous thread indeed, and leaves me uncertain what to do with this journal that has served me so well over the past six years. So uncertain, in fact, that I contemplated closing or making the journal private on or immediately after my 21st birthday, closing this LJ chapter of my life at a coming of age moment. But that did not seem fitting; the end of fandom in my life does not mean the end of LiveJournal in my life (which, after all, predated fandom for me.) The only question now is, where to next?

Attention: California residents

As y'all very possibly know, both houses of the California legislator have for the second time in two years passed a marriage equality bill that would allow same-sex couples civil marriage licenses issued by the state of California.

Please take a moment to sign Equality California's "10,000 for Marriage" petition, which aims to deliver the names of 10,000 Californians who support marriage equality to the Governator in the very near future. (The Governator vetoed the first same-sex marriage bill in 2005, and months ago threatened to do the same this time. However, he has not recently commented on the bill, and common sense dictates that putting maximum pressure on him in every way possible is a plus.)
[If you don't live in California, you should still sign the petition, but you will have to identify yourself as a resident of a different state/country.]

If you have a bit more time, in addition to signing the petition, you should email the Governator, or write by snail mail (always taken more seriously).


...if anyone has any thoughts on this new series of ads brought to us courtesy of Sony, I'd be interested. If you look, two notes:
1. There are four images; look at all four.
2. Any image will become the large image if you click on it. Don't read too much into one image being larger than the others.


Amuse me

Who still reads this journal? Any thoughts on it, me, the sky being blue, whatever? Any questions? Something you've been itching to say? I'm really good at not taking things personally, so feel free to say whatever you want.

Never done one of these before, so go for it - IP logging off, anonymous commenting enabled.

City by the Bay IV: Your Moment of Zen

Took this picture while stopped at a stop light, so the glare makes it sketchy, but hey.

This business characterizes itself as committed to "innovative and progressive ideas" and resistant "to forces of conservatism and censorship". You mean this sort of place still exists in 21st century America?
[all joking aside, there are times when I seriously am startled to see American flags flying in San Francisco. And THAT bothers me more than I can express...I definitely didn't feel that way when I was here in October, and I'm certain that this is a post-November 2004 thing.]

Image hosted by Photobucket.com

City Lights Bookstore, 261 Columbus Avenue, San Francisco, California.
There, where the air is free, we'll be what we want to be...
Now, if we make a stand, we'll find our promised land...

Pet Shop Boys' cover of Village People, Go West (referring to San Francisco*)

Not *too* much this weekend. This was a solo SF run, so I didn't spend as long as I might have with friends. On Saturday, I didn't feel like going to the gym, so since I was in SF anyway, I walked along the Golden Gate Bridge instead. This might have been an adequate workout if I had not kept stopping to take pictures along the way.

Safe to assume that everyone knows what the Bridge looks like by now, so I'll start with the Castro "We Bring Gay Pride 24/7/365" District. For those new to my flist who might be bored and browsing LJ tomorrow (Monday) morning at work, I wrote some flocked thoughts on the Castro in October of 2004.

A flag flies tall above the Castro "The Word Straight Isn't Even In Our Vocabulary" District, at the intersection of Castro and Market. Although located in America, this District is the capital of a different sort of nation.
Queer Nation, manCollapse )

Nor does the Castro "We Put the Fuck Back in Fucking Awesome, Mr. President" District make any secret of where its loyalties lie. As seen in A Different Light bookstore.
Bush ain"t our PresidentCollapse )

It's a magical kingdom of sprites and faeries...
Rainbows ahoyCollapse )

The historic Castro Theatre is the primary site for the upcoming San Francisco International LGBT Film Festival, the largest queer film festival in the world. This will be the first film festival at which I have volunteered (or even attended).
All queer, all the timeCollapse )

It's not all fun and games in the Castro, however. The Harvey Milk plaza commemorates the life of the first openly gay elected official of any large American city (no surprise that THAT happened in San Francisco). He was assassinated by a homophobic former city supervisor who had opposed the passage of a major gay rights bill. Milk said when he was alive, "If a bullet should enter my brain, let that bullet destroy every closet door in the country." Twenty-seven years after his death, that vision has still not been realized, but who knows how many people were able to come out because of his political efforts - or at least find a home in San Francisco.
Rest in peace...Collapse )

Black and white banners for the San Francisco AIDS Walk to be held in July fly in stark contrast to the rainbow hues of the Castro.
Time is the space between me and youCollapse )

Also, I feel compelled to make a plug for a couple of mainstream businesses that have realized a basic truth: rainbow's got green. Queers are, by and large, better educated and have more disposable income than average, and I applaud the businesses that know how to take a stand based on principle (where principle is defined as "US currency"). I'm not stupid enough to think that any business actually gives a damn about any form of rights (Microsoft illustrated just how erroneous such a thought would be), but it's still comforting when businesses decide it's in their economic advantage to support queers rather than homophobic freaks, here in the Ho-Ho-Homo Capital of the Whole Wide World, as Mr. Brian Kinney might say.
All hail Sprint and Bank of AmericaCollapse )

Lastly, a few Golden Gate Bridge related shots.
I'm looking out over that Golden Gate Bridge on another gorgeous sunny Saturday and I'm seeing bumper to bumper traffic...
- Starship, We Built This City

The Golden Gate Bridge does fly an American flag, largely due to the Bush administration. San Francisco would actually fly only rainbow flags throughout the city, were it not for the fact that this would make the City a target of the "War on Terror". As the above pictures demonstrate, there is no greater threat to free people everywhere than the City of San Francisco, as long as you're defining "free people" as "sexually repressed prudes who have never had an orgasm because they have permanent chastity belts attached to their brains, and who want to make sure that no one else ever has an orgasm". There is nothing more scary than innocent, unarmed Iraqis...except for queers and their supporters. Really, it came down to Gavin Newsom not wanting to be sent to Guantanamo Bay. /unnecessary rant
(Alternatively, I choose to look at it as a reminder that there are some places in America still worth living in.)
From sea to shining bayCollapse )

San Francisco is also apparently a great place to commit suicide. Disclaimer: if you are considering suicide, you should cease viewing all pictures of the Golden Gate Bridge immediately and contact a mental health professional. Alternatively, you should visit the Golden Gate Bridge and use these nifty little emergency phones they have on the Bridge itself to help people like you. Under no circumstances should you actually jump off the Golden Gate Bridge, and if you have to jump off the Golden Gate Bridge, please note that by viewing this post, you have consented not to include a link to this post in your suicide note. Or something like that.
Taking the plunge...or notCollapse )

Walking North on the Bridge, you see Horseshoe Bay, which I believe is in Marin County, but I wouldn't swear to that. In any case, very pretty...
Horseshoe BayCollapse )

Walking South on the Bridge, you see none other than the infamous San Francisco. Also very pretty, if you're not tired of the full city shots I keep posting, and posting, and posting...
Repetition makes it happenCollapse )

Last bonus shot of the Bridge from the Bridge. Taken facing South (towards San Francisco).
Once more with feelingCollapse )

And that's all for now. Sorry that I'm so behind on comments. I will try to catch up...sometime.

* The Village People originally recorded Go West referring to San Francisco, but the Pet Shop Boys' cover refers dually to San Francisco and metaphorically going West to find peace, the latter meaning directed to those living with AIDS.


Into the West (GGB) (thediane)
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