October 21st, 2006



I have spent the entire morning thinking about a very important event in my future.
I talked with _dkg_ for quite some time; he's committed to being there with us, but he's politically un-enthused about the institution. At first, my conversation with him felt blocked, and I think it was because we were each trying to make the other feel comfortable: I was saying how great a party it would be, and he was saying how he was very happy for us.

I thought about it a bit and I realized that I really wanted him to be happy about the event and I wanted to check in with him about that. I called him back and told him. He told me about a friend of his (David) who does amazing social activist work: healing the sick [he's a doctor] in the inner city, standing for peace by joining peacekeeper teams in the Middle East (Iraq, even). David is a committed Christian, and would tell you that his actions that we both admire so much are rooted in his faith. But _dkg_ said [I paraphrase] "I am really proud of who David is, but I still have a hard time honoring Jesus for that." He made me present to the idea that I am asking him to do something similar: I want him to honor the partnership, and community that surrounds that partnership between me and boobirdsfly (yes, you out there in the listening can take a bow, you're part of that), and to honor our commitment to that partnership, and to celebrate in our event that joy and happiness. And _dkg_ is committed to joining all those celebrations. But just as David requests that we recognize his faith in Jesus as being at the root of who David is being in the world, I was -- and I am -- asking _dkg_ to honor our upcoming marriage as the recognition of the good thing that we have -- and that we are. The choice to be each others' partners lives at the root of who we are as a couple in this world.

_dkg_ has some excellent reasons to be disillusioned and frustrated with the institution of marriage: it is heteronormative, it is often held up as a one-size-fits-all template, it has historical roots in the treatment of women as property, and many people (especially certain "traditionalists") use it to bundle social contracts that should be negotiable separately. boobirdsfly and I are aware of those things, and we're choosing to create a marriage together anyway.

_dkg_ said "I think higher of marriage because you and boobirdsfly are doing it, not the other way around." I have never been more honored.

boobirdsfly and I spent some more time in planning our wedding, as well. We are really enjoying taking it easy, but spending an hour once or twice a week to be enthusiastic and plan-ful together starting now is a lot more fun than being head-over-heels crazy for the two months before the actual event (currently looks like it'll be early August 2007).

If you read through all this, and you still want the pretty announcement, please make sure I have your snail-mail address -- my email is [the obvious user name] at gmail.com . If you've already sent it to boobirdsfly, you're probably good; she's pretty organized!
pedant, law and order

[media log] Justice League S1D1,2, Starfish, Lemming

Justice League, Season 1, Disks 1&2
I just finished watching the second DVD in this series from Netflix. This has been a lot of retro fun for an old comics reader, and I enjoy that it actually captures some of the magic of the old Justice League comics I read as a kid. I'm enjoying noticing the background hat-tips (a giant storm is "Tropical Storm Gardner", which has to be a reference to Guy Gardner's temper), Snapper Carr is a reporter.
I notice that the series has dropped the "of America" from the traditional team name, and this seems like a wise thing, considering that the lineup -- if you know the characters' back stories -- is fairly alien: that makes [by increasing alien-ness] one "normal" (psychotic-deranged) human, one human enhanced by laboratory accident/mystical power force [depending on who you read], one human enhanced by alien police-weapon artifact, a thousand-year-old demigod, and the trifecta of a Martian, a Kryptonian, and a Thanagarian. I mean sheesh, we're lucky these people (if that's the right word) feel loyal to Homo sapiens at all. There is one nod, in the In Blackest Night episodes, in that direction:
Superman, investigating the debris of a destroyed planet, to J'onn J'onnz: "Does this remind you of anything?"
J'onn: "The deaths of millions. Grief. Anger. Echoes of both our pasts."
Yow. Shivers when I realize that the two of them are each last surviving members of their species. I was glad to see a teeny bit of acknowledgement of the real darkness in the motivating stories of some of these characters (though I'm still waiting to see Batman's darkness explored a little).

Starfish, by Peter Watts.
This is a great near-future SF story, that I read by recommendation from yendi. Like The Abyss, with which it shares some thematic similarities, it's an SF exploration of the alien spaces even on our own planet -- and in human minds. Who is the kind of person that might get sent to work on the bottom of the deep-sea trenches to run a (claustrophobic, cramped, disturbing) geothermal power station? The oddest-of-the-odd, the people whose minds are already bent and broken: child molesters, sociopaths, paranoids, and masochists. Yet Watts' writing gives them humanity, and even the possibility of a sort of inside-out redemption, leaving the normals on the surface looking more and more bent and twisted themselves.
Spooky, intense, thought-provoking. Recommended.

Lemming, starring (among others) Charlottes Rampling and Gainsbourg.
Spooky psychological thriller that boobirdsfly picked out because of the Charlotte Gainsbourg factor. Scared me quite a bit, actually, and felt like a David Lynch film. It leaves a lot of questions open -- it's not clear whether it's a ghost story, or how much of the movie is hallucination.
Watch it with someone who will hold your hand -- much more fun that way.