from my state – literally and figuratively – and other places. i'm not in florida any more, but i haven't given up the sunshine.


body conscious despite myself

in high school i was well, overweight. it was embarrassing and impactful to the point that i have vivid memories of my skinny girl friend’s telling me that the boys said i’d be pretty someday. (at the time, yes i was interested in what the boys thought.)

several years later (and several years ago), i was buying a bra when a salesperson offered to measure me to make sure i was buying the right size. i’d lost much of the weight so it seemed like a good idea. that is, until i was informed that my ‘c’ cup was actually a ‘b’. i laughed it off with friends, but it had a definite impact on my self image.

after another more recent bra measurement, i was informed that i’ve lost another cup size. (seriously, next time they’re going to try to put me in a training bra) so the weight discussion has taken a different turn and i’m on this quest to gain weight in a healthy way. it’s not even noon. i’ve consumed a ridiculous number of calories and at least 34 grams of fat in the form of pistachio nuts and whole milk yogurt. and i’m already feeling like a giant tub of lard despite the fact that apparently i’m supposed to consume 62 grams in a single day.

the truth about the bra size is that they wanted to put me in a contraption that created unnatural cleavage elevated to just below my chin. i did not buy the smaller size. but i did buy a push-up and the whole experience has re-ignited my anger at how much our self-image is bombarded with ridiculous commercially-designed ideals.

i know many brilliant women – most of whom are feminists even if they choose not to use the word – and still we waste a hell of a lot of useful mind space and conversation worrying about weight and carbs and fats and the latest health reports when really no one knows the right answers.

it's a sad waste of a lot of amazing energy.


help for the fashionably ignorant

i recently needed the advice of one of my girliest girl friends. apparently it was a near miss with the fashion police. thank goodness someone keeps up with this stuff.

me: so, if i bought a teal and white dress, do i have to get white shoes?
friend: no. silver, gold or tan/camel.
me: wow. and i thought buying white shoes would be bad.
friend: it would have.


friday frivolity

“but what you do [on your blog] is different … myspace is just place to say things like, oh you look totally hot.”

this is part of an ongoing conversation with a friend who likes to chide me about my disdain for myspace. and it precisely defines why i have this love/hate thing. but as amy points out it’s what the kids are doing. i caved in earlier this year and got my[own]space. but no, i’m not posting more pictures on myspace. i prefer flickr thank you very much. and, this page is enough to satisfy my narcissistic idea that someone might actually be interested in the random things i write about. but the truth is- i check myspace every day.

here’s where it’s truly fun: you can peek into the lives of people from your past for a satisfying dose of nostalgia without that awkward, standing in the grocery store aisle wondering what the hell to say to this person moment.

so for a little friday fun, log into that evil little corner of the internet. see who you can dig up. let us know what you find.


kings, queens, and in betweens

boys rockin the stage
boys rockin the stage,
originally uploaded by sunshineandbeyond.
drag queen shows these days have really surpassed the rest of the homosexual community with their leap into the mainstream. stuffing a bill into the cleavage of a dancing queen is nearly as commonplace during a night on the town as ordering a vodka tonic.

the drama kings were recently in town. i love a drag show. queens, kings, in-betweens - doesn’t matter. it’s the kind of event where people are invited to throw off most of their usual inhibitions and just have a good time.

yet when a biological female straps her breasts down, throws on a cowboy hat and hard packs her wranglers for a lip sync performance of honky tonk badonkadonk the discomfort – particularly among lesbians and not because that song is a complete embarrassment – is rampant. there were comments like (yes, i’m picking on a couple of people here. sorry.): ‘i’m a little freaked out.’ and, ‘why did they have to show us their strap-ons?!’

so, what’s the big deal, here?


the earth is groaning

recently overheard at the local laundromat --
“girl, the earth is groaning. it is gr-oaning from sin. and that sin stinks. i tell you it sTiNkS in the nose of the lord … girlfriend beLIEVE me. sometimes god … he let’s terrible things happen to people. but you know – it makes the s-NAP back in line and pay attention to what the good lord is tryin’ to tell them. i tell you somethin’ girlfriend – he. will. change. your. life.”

now, i mean no offense to any christian, but no wOnDeR so many of us have serious doubts about the religion when there are people like this preaching their own version of the gospel at the laundromat.

can’t a girl just wash her panties in peace? isn’t it torture enough that they insist on playing jerry springer on the store television?


so how are those resolutions coming?

we’re 48 days into 2006… any progress on those 2006 goals?

aside from being a pretty decent tourist and doing a small amount of biking, mine are officially kaput. not to worry … there’s still time.


reconfirming my disinclination toward going to the doctor

after waking to the MoSt HoRriFiC stabbing pain in my gut (accompanied by some other rather disgusting symptoms) and enduring what seemed like abject hell for several hours, i succumbed to the suggestion of going to a doctor. fortunately, at least my girlfriend was going with me.

since i don’t have on of my own, i had the pleasure of visiting a walk-in. after the usual history/current symptoms questions, doc asked me to lie back. he then pressed his pointy little fingers into my abdomen to the point he probably felt my spine.

“does this hurt?”
“um … yyyes.” [doesn’t is aLwAys hurt when someone digs into your gut?]
“how about when i let go?” [quick withdrawl makes belly jiggle like jello on a washing machine]
“no so much.”

so, doc sends me to a nearby emergency room for some bloodwork just to make sure it’s not appendicitis. after hours in the waiting room, i find myself wearing my first ever hospital gown, having four viles of blood drawn and enduring a first iv (which, of course, is harder to insert when one is dehydrated). the result: chances are (4:5 the doc said) my appendix is fine.

all that for a little gas … er, stomach flu.


confession of a converted diehard

well i don’t know about oysters as an aphrodisiac, but having been introduced to the half shell in the north part of florida, i’ve always been a gulf oyster purist – if it wasn’t from apalachicola or new orleans, i didn’t want it.

last night at mccormick & schmick’s in dc … i. changed. my. mind. there were a dozen oyster varieties. not one from florida.

with not a saltine in sight, i tasted my way through a platter of six raw oysters with the vigilance of a wine connoisseur at a tasting. they were – hands down – the best oysters i have ever tasted.

a very happy heart day to all … while you’re plowing through that box of chocolates, visit for a little loving inspiration and give them a little love, as well.


the pout parade

there was a brief period of time when my girlfriend and i ran together. the distance was never long – about a mile – but it was in the hilly atlanta area and even half a mile was too much for my nonexistent endurance. a few blocks into the run, she’s turn back to check my status and i’d glare at her with looks that i imagined could pierce a thick steel wall. running. hurt. and because i couldn’t just be mad at myself for being so out of shape, i redirected my anger at her. needless to say, we didn’t run together for very long.

there is a small group of women in ft. lauderdale training for the ms ride in may (unlike others we’re grossly behind on the fundraising, but doing fairly well with training.) this weekend, our valiant team captain lead us on a 40 mile ride. i was skeptical at the start, but felt surprisingly good at the turn around point. that is until we started back, cycling into gale force winds. around mile 30, the cranky kicked. i looked at team captain and said, in no uncertain terms “i hAtE you right now.”

and i did. but when all was said and done, we all made it the full 40 miles. perhaps at a tortoise pace. but we made it nonetheless.


nature vs. nurture

the debate about homosexuality as a choice or biologically determined is ongoing. but like reliving the wackiness that defined the 80s – parachute pants, jelly shoes, debbie gibson – it hasn't gotten old yet.

i recently sat through a q&a session with judy dlugacz, founder of olivia, who provided an interesting perspective – (paraphrased) she asserted that defending homosexuality as genetic, and denying it as lifestyle choice, effectively succumbs to the ridiculous terms of the debate as defined by the fundamental right.

the point is this: by denying we have a choice about whether or not to be gay and insisting that it is genetically bestowed upon us is like saying: look, i didn’t ask for this. i know it’s wrong. and if i had my way, i’d go straight.

when truth be told, genetic or not, there are plenty of great reasons i choose to be a lesbian.

so what do you say to that?


reality break

i barely looked at the news while on the big boat in the caribbean. and as i watched the super bowl open sunday night, my eyes welled up at the news of corretta scott king's passing. the comedians on the boat let us know alito was confirmed. but there's simply no joke to be made about losing one of the great hearts of our world. following her husband’s legacy, king continued to be a civil rights leader – working not only against racial bias, but also speaking for gay rights.

i wonder: who will the history books list as the great u.s. civil rights leaders of the 90s and start the 21st century?


cruising with olivia

traveling for a week on a cruise ship with 1800 lesbians is well … interesting::

it’s nice to hold hands or kiss and know you won’t get sneered at, spit on or pornographied;
strange to grasp how many lesbian stereotypes exists because of truths;
and humbling to realize how much others have endured to pave a smoother road for us.
it’s delightful not to feel threatened by a conversation with or compliment from a stranger.
it is absolutely entertaining to watch a room full of lesbians dancing … whether laughing at hip thrusts, or admiring old school waltzing.
it’s wonderful to be in an environment where women are free to do whatever they want; and beyond puzzling what some choose to do with that freedom.

the trip was phenomenal fun. but, it is really, so very good to be back home.

anyone else ever been on an olivia trip? what did you think?