I've been crazy busy, yet I don't have much to talk about. I hate that. I've been working. (I think my boss means it about retiring. I think I am being groomed to take her place.) I've been going to interior decorating classes, and getting decent grades and reviews despite not being able to draw and having to do everything on computers. And on Sunday, I turned 33. Many thanks to those of you who remembered, and I don't mind if you didn't. I'm awful with dates, so I just try to be nice all year long. :-) I only remember my aunt's birthday because I was supposed to be born on it, and came along a month early, and she's still disappointed. (Reckon I just wasn't cut out to be an Aries!)
I apologize also for the picture. A Pandas Unlimited member had screen-capped the DC adult pandas mating for the cam, but decided to pull the picture. That's why there was the big Flickr blank in the middle. I couldn't get to it! It was still funny. They really do look, as a former MessageBoard of Love member observed, like a pile of Oreo cookies!
One of my job duties is intern-wrangling--in other words, I'm the one who signs their time cards, assures their instructors that they're learning something from those Starbucks runs, resolves disputes, etc. We usually have three or four, mostly female for some reason. (No, I do not work in fashion or for a fashion magazine.) One of the current ones wears a size 14, and was worried about how the boy she liked would see her body when they got naked. I told her this, as a woman who has struggled to stay in a size 16 and worried about what boys and skinny little girls who can eat whatever they want would think: "He would be shocked and disappointed if you were skinny. He has an idea what you look like. Believe me, he's thought about it a lot already. And you see he's still hanging around." She considered. Then she told me that I made her weekend better, because she felt more confident! I felt good about it, but also wished that I could restrain the desire to be a "big sister."
My birthday party's theme was "Let's have Jayelle watch the race without making her cook or clean." It was a good one. The best part was that friends who aren't into NASCAR came over for me! I had hoped that Tony Stewart, Juan Pablo Montoya, and Kevin Harvick could have a 1-2-3 finish in observation of my day, but of course that's not what happened. Jimmie Freakin' Johnson won it. I was, unreasonably, distressed by this, and almost took it as a bad omen for my year, but pulled myself together. L'Ailee gave me a gorgeous pair of aquamarine earrings that are about to grow into my ears, as I don't want to take them off yet!
Anyway, I'm sorry once again if anyone's felt ignored. I keep wanting to talk and think about bigger issues, but smaller things keep swarming in like ants and taking up all the room in my brain for the moment. I feel the need to write about something I discovered this weekend. While I'm composing it, I'll share links with y'all, as I have elseweb. MySpace has several ex-gay and anti-gay websites on it, in hopes of attracting teens to the cause. (My MS friend Brian points out that the current generation's already got enough homophobes.) While these sites are still outnumbered by pro-LGBT ones, and while they don't have as many "friends" as most pro-gay ones, and while of course everyone has the right to say what they want on MySpace, I wonder if there's something between ignoring and censoring, a way to give LGBT kids having conflicts with their family, church, and/or selves real help rather than guilt and the potential to become the next Ted Haggard.
You'll see why I might be concerned if you go to:
*Day of Truth Promotes an "alternative" to the Day of Silence, in which Christian kids are encouraged to tell their friends in school that gayness and biness are wrong, wrong, wrong, wrong and can/should be changed.
*The rally to get the kids whipped up to insult their peers on the Day of Truth.
*Exodus Youth, a division of the ex-gay group for teens and college students.
I guess what really concerns me about this is that in MySpace groups and Yahoo! Answers, kids ask questions like, "Can I change it?", "What do I do if I'm in a conservative town or family?", etc. And these people are presenting an answer that hurts them. Then again, they think me and other LGBTs and allies are doing the same thing, and want to counterbalance our bad influence. So...what?
I have some good links, too:
The 100 Worst-Reviewed Movies of All Time. RottenTomatoes.com wants to protect your valuable time and brain.
Learn about John Horse and the only successful North American slave rebellion. It happened in Florida!
How Orlando's suburban sprawl affected the rest of America.