Thursday, September 23, 2004

The Usual

Picked up another of the usual sort of rejects from Datlow for one of my shorts, the WMD story. She said there's not "enough to the story" which I can't complain about. There's not. But I like the story anyway.

I've been wondering if there's a form reject for SciFiction (cause I've never seen it), and if Datlow is really signing these, or her slush reader signs for her (I don't think Kelly Link is still reading the slush, is she?). Every reject I've gotten from SF (and I have a great collection) has been typed and signed and addressed to me, and she always asks for more. The language varies (like all editors, there are common reasons for reject, but never identical letters).

So, I take this as a good sign. In another ten years, I might start selling stories there.

Ha. Persistence.

In other news, I'm taking tomorrow off work, because "work" is just a ridiculous term for it.

Such Pretty Boys

I figured they were dumping the talent competitions for the Miss USA beauty pageant because, really, it was always about skin, and nobody gave a damn about world peace. Donald Trump said as much about the jury picks and how so many "reall beautiful" women were "passed over" by "incompetent judges" who, I presume, weighed the talent and bogus question categories over silicone implants.

What bugs me is that this year's skin show is even far surpassing the comfort level of the women being paraded out like cattle at a meat market (I've been to a meat market. I know what it looks like. This is it. And I still have very vivid memories of a man in South Africa turning to me at a party and saying, "How many cattle do you think you're worth?").

"Contestants will wear more revealing swimsuits on stage following a 2-year contract with Speedo, owned by Warnaco Group Inc. . The one-piece or two-piece suits, worn as bikinis by most competitors, leave little to the imagination and have caused some unease among the contestants, most of whom are aged between 22 and 24.

But organizers are playing down the swimsuits, saying the contest showcases the talents and aspirations of today's young women who want to make the world a better place and brighten it with their good looks."

Brighten the world with your good looks, ladies!

After all, that's all we're here to do! Be pretty! Make Nice!

I want a beer.

Where's my parade of male bodies? Men's bodies can be just as overly scrutinized and just as conflated with sex as women's - so what's the deal, guys, where are all the Suicide Boys (not work safe)?

via ddw

Godless Americans Political Action Committee

I had no idea this was a real organization.

Who'da thought?

They endorse Kerry, by the way.

Assumption of Privilege.. and kittens

A day in the live of Thin Privilege

A day in the life of Straight Privilege

White Male Opression Awareness Month! (because I couldn't resist) White men being oppressed! Here and here!

Ahem. Yes. I realize I'm being intolerant and exclusionary, so here's:

Kitten Terrorists. The next wave (this one's for Jenn).

October Surprise!

So, what's your guess for October's "surprise" fear tactic to increase Bush approval ratings?


"It will be revealed that the three token female bloggers the A-list confesses to stealing material from via Bloglines are actually men who work for the DNC." - CC

"All kidding aside, we're going to get another alert that terrorists have crossed our borders." - Trish Wilson

"They won't be imaginative, because something too complex won't have the emotional pull they need.

But it would be cool if it were that McCain will commit hari-kari on the Capitol steps to show his support for the Bush campaign." - Amanda

"Palace revolt. Congressional Repugs see THEIR jobs going down the rathole with Bush. There is a shootout between the Congressional delegation and the Saved. The pragmatics win the soul of Bush. The RNC dumps Cheney "for health reasons" and puts in McCain for VP. McCain accepts on behalf of his friends in the Senate. Everyone wins and the country sinks into the sunset.

I hope it doesn't happen. Don't let any Republicans read this." - Anon

Presidential Debates

The debates are gearing up! Check out the Secret Addendum to the Debate Agreement that both parties had to sign!

TOP SECRET ADDENDUM TO ELECTION 2004 DEBATE AGREEMENT, entered into on September 20, 2004 by President George W. Bush (hereinafter referred to as "Bush") and Senator John F. Kerry (hereinafter referred to as "Kerry")

NOW, THEREFORE, Bush and Kerry hereby agree to the following top secret provisions:

1. Kerry shall be required to answer all debate questions in French.

2. Bush shall be required to answer all debate questions in English.

3. Throughout each debate, the backdrop behind Bush shall feature several U.S. flags, the precise number of which is subject to further negotiation.

4. Throughout each debate, the backdrop behind Kerry shall feature a map of Massachusetts and two life-size photos of Kerry with Jane Fonda.

11. All debate attendees shall be required to sign Bush/Cheney loyalty oaths, including all members of the media, except those employed by Fox.

15. Bush shall not be asked any question that requires him to pronounce the words nuclear, solidarity and/or Abu Ghraib.

16. In the event Kerry is declared the winner of any debate, Bush shall be entitled to a recount.

Gay People Get Married Every Day!!

Hate yourself! Hate who you are! Have sex with a woman you're not attracted to! You'll both love it! Donate money to the church! Pay us for making you think you're a freak!


It's a good reminder, though: gay people do get married. "They" get married everyday. And add to the mistaken assumption of normative heterosexuality, and whatever the hell that's supposed to mean.

At least there are some ad companies refusing to post this thing.

"Some" being the operative word.


Here's a great idea: put cosmetics vending machines in schools, so ten year old girls can have instant access to enhancing their sex appeal and learning how to be "real women" early! I wonder what would happen if boys started using them, instead? Boys wearing make-up would be totally hot. Think, Velvet Goldmine. Maybe they'd mix and match mascara? Use compacts as poker tokens? Who thought this up?

There's a new interview with Stephen King that's worth taking a look at - I was interested in his sudden intensity with the writing of the Dark Tower books, a series that looked to be one of those always-in-progress writer's constructions. I did fully expect that he'd die before he finished them. The accident in 2000 kick-started him into finishing. "I decided that I wanted to finish it. I wanted to be true to the 22-year-old who wanted to write the longest popular novel of all time. And I did: it's 2,500 pages long, maybe longer. I knew it was going to be like crossing the Atlantic in a bathtub. I thought I'm just going to keep on working, because if I stop I'll never start again." The interview also includes, some, uh, bile from Harold Bloom about King's winning the National Book award. I'd never read so much of Bloom's diatribe. It's pretty spectacular. And then, to end on a good, writerly note, there was this bit: "Now he has completed his personal equivalent to The Canterbury Tales and The Mystery of Edwin Drood, can he die fulfilled? `It's always the way. I know what I wanted to achieve and not all of it is on the page. That's the writer's torment.' So why continue the torment? `Let's not go crazy. It's just such a buzz to write. While I'm doing it, there's nothing better in life. It's what I was made to do.'"

That's a writer for ya.

Sidney Blumenthal's got an interesting article about Bush's use of "positive thinking" to undermine reality in the Guardian. It helps explain why he runs into so much trouble trying to talk to international audiences - he doesn't know how to speak to them. He's used to speaking to Americans wearing blinders. "'The liberation is 'succeeding', he insists, and only pessimists cannot see it....Bush explained that, for him, intelligence is not to inform decision-making, but to be used or rejected to advance an ideological and political agenda. His dismissal is an affirmation of the politicisation and corruption of intelligence that rationalised the war."