Monday, February 28, 2005

Same Thing Happens to Me

New studies have concluded:
Measurements of Michelangelo's David have shown that all is normal in the naked marble man, though he could have been a little better endowed.

The towering sculpture acclaimed for its depiction of male physical perfection, has always been the subject of jokes among Florentines and tourists for the modest dimensions of his "pisello."

But according to a study to be published at the end of this month by the Dutch Institute for Art History, in Florence, David's genitals are anatomically correct for a male body in a "pre-fight tension."

Good to know. Now I can rest easy once again.

Click on the title for the full story. Click here for the full Monty.

Sunday, February 27, 2005

Larry and Graham Studio One

This studio is where I spent last Sunday afternoon.

Larry Graham is a local, noted photographer who has become my friend and mentor. It was Larry who encouraged me to bring my pictures out of the cupboard and into the light of day where they have been met with surprising favor. His website shows his work to its best advantage.

But it doesn't show what he is doing now. And that is a remarkable story.

Although he is fine now, a while back Larry endured some health issues, some serious health issues. The kind that make you want to turn your life in a different direction and ensure that you leave behind something really worthwhile.

He began to study the paintings of Caravaggio. He decided to embark on a series of photographs of certain of the Caravaggio paintings. He found a model who embodied his personal conception of a Christ figure. And he discovered color.

Not Kodachrome. Color. In shades of darkness and light. Deep, rich color. Dark reds and golds, glowing flesh tones.

And he surrounded his Jesus figure with faces that speak of sin, unendurable sadness, and ultimate salvation.

So there I was last Sunday, dressed as an apostle along with 20 or so other faces, who would move into and out of the tableau he was creating. He didn't use me early in the shoot. This left me free to watch what he was doing.

What a master class that was. Larry controlling 13 people at a time, adjusting their glances, the placements of their hands, the degrees of their leaning towards or away from Jesus, all by speaking to them, never handling them.

By the time he was ready for me to step into the picture, I was too caught up in his process. I could no longer step across his proscenium and into that other world. I had to ask his forgiveness and his allowance to continue to watch and observe and learn.

The afternoon was passing fast now. Everyone was tired. He lined up the remaining people who had all been waiting for their turn. Some of the earlier ones he called back. Some stepped in for the first time.

The rest of us stood and waited.

Soon the room became quiet. The posers were certainly tired and hot. They no longer acted the parts of this apostle or that one. Even Jesus seemed ready to blow the joint.

But those of us behind the camera saw what had happened. A Last Supper had jelled before our eyes. It had taken only two hours, but it was certainly there. Everyone in the studio became very quiet. Larry shot once, twice, a third time.

It was done.

It seems Caravaggio may have never painted a Last Supper.

Larry Graham photographed one last week.

God bless you, big guy.

Hatred and Bigotry: What Makes America Great

John Aravosis has a link to about a recent column from some bimbo we should never have heard of. And Wolcott had it the day before yesterday.

Being born and raised in the deep South, I know racism.

If it looks like a duck, and it quacks like a ain't your Jack Russell.

Saturday, February 26, 2005

Isn't It About Time?

For those of you who haven't seen any of my shots from this year's Mardi Gras, this is the kind of stuff you're missing. Posted by Hello

Gagging for a Good Time

We went out last evening and passed some time at the Golden Latrine. There was a fun crowd out. Tom the bartender played a DVD of a B B King concert. Jim and Godfrey provided food from the Bywater Barbecue. The doors were partly open inviting walkers in, and a cool breeze was keeping everybody inside comfortable. What could mess up a night like that?


Not one but two twinky, should-have-been-out-dancing queens showed up and placed themsleves in positions between everyone and the front doors. In just a few minutes my nasal passages began to shut down, my throat went dry, my heart started racing, and my lungs began to collapse. And no one found them attractive. Trust me.

Well, maybe Steve did, but Steve was finding altogether too many people attractive last night.

Why don't parents or school guidance counselors teach these clueless clods how to wear that shit?

Women know not to drench themselves in smelly oils. Well, ladies do. And they are always welcome at the Latrine.

All the rest of you, take the hint.

Thursday, February 24, 2005

This is Getting Complicated

In today's Village Voice, Ward Harkavy has this to say about Doug Wead's so-called bush tapes:

Yesterday, in "The Zelig of the Religious Right," I wrote this about Wead's very selective release of only a small fraction of his tapes to the New York Times:

    This latest "revelation" that George W. Bush is a flawed man of faith and prayer who is thoughtful is just more propaganda.

I said that Wead would never hurt Bush, that Wead "played" the Times. I can say this about Wead because I've written more about him than any other reporter on the planet. (See my 1992 stories about Wead's run for Congress in Arizona, two of which I posted Monday: "The Tangled Roots of Doug Wead" and "Doug Wead and the Bushes, Part II.")

This article is part of a series. Check it out.

And I know you're thinking, Jeez, these lefties are seeing conspiracy theories all over the place. I would reply, "Yep, because they're there." The truth is, ever since this smirking fool bush went national, his handlers have been running a snake-oil scam on the country, and too many people have been buying up their Hadacol like the Loosiana rednecks and Cajuns did back in the '40's and '50's.

Wednesday, February 23, 2005

The Future is Real

I took the day off from work yesterday to travel up to Baton Rouge. There I met with a lovely young woman who gave me hints about what I can expect from retirement.

Retirement. Scares me. Lots of things are beginning to scare me now as I approach my feeble dotage. Why the hell didn't I marry young and raise lots of children I could now "guilt" into looking after me? Approaching uselessness, helplessness, and final oblivion are becoming visible on the horizon. If life is like scaling a mountain then coming down, the climbing part is long and arduous and a whopping adventure, but the descent is fucking fast, man. Like gravity, you know.

Why does God have to give us these turning points in our lives. Al I want in my life now is a big old sloppy comfortable bed, a safe secure bunker in bright happy colors, digital cable, and regular food delivery. Is that so much to ask?

But no. On August 15th of this year, I will officially retire from a job that defines me, and enter a limbo world where I will continue to work for three more years, building up a nest egg that will entitle me to a comfortable sum of money from which I will derive my sustenance for the remainder of my life.

The words of a song from my youth keeps running through my head: "Will I be happy? Will I be rich?" Well, not rich. That has never been in my cards and isn't something I think I would really want anyway.

But happiness? I remember as a high school freshman or sophomore in the seminary, my guidance counselor, after speaking to me for some time - getting to know me - said, "You've never been happy, have you, Glenn?"

Well, that just made me lose it and I bawled like a baby who had just stuck a fork into an electric socket. Poor me.

What I've learned since then is that happiness isn't euphoria or even freedom from sadness or anger. Prozac taught me that before I was able to let it go.

Happiness is going to bed at night knowing I did one right thing for someone other than poor me.

You don't need a job for that, do you? Or maybe I'll stumble into some other job I might find as rewarding. Or maybe I'll find the time to make pictures. That's something I've always wanted to do. I might even leave two or three really good ones behind by the time my time is up.

Everyone else who has retired from the agency has unfolded and blossomed after stepping out the door that last time. Maybe I will, too.

If not, there's always cable and delivered meals.

Sunday, February 20, 2005

Tainted Money

Click the title above if you have any doubt that the right-wing (so-called) christian movement is anything but anti-christian.

Because some little small-minded group disapproves of a performance piece, cancer sufferers will suffer more. Doesn't sound like the kind of thing Jesus would applaud.

Won't somebody, somewhere, finally stand up and stop accommodating these bigoted, dogmatic fanatics?

Thursday, February 17, 2005

Happy Birthday, Sperm Magnet!

Even though we weren't there for you at the beginning - about 36 years ago - we have loved you for as long as we have known you - far short of 36 years.

Always being true to yourself, you have given everyone around you nothing but giddy joy - since about 36 years ago.

We won't mention your years of longevity today (about 36). They amount to an accomplishment (damn! 36!!). But we will say, "As long as you lay (for 36 years), so long may you fly (for another 36!)"

Bring on the (36) pool tables, Honey!

And bend over, Sweetheart...for 36 times :-)



Caught your attention, huh? Public theologian has an interesting take on a Kristof Op-Ed piece about sex education.

One tidbit I'd like to throw out: Hasn't anyone noticed that not even a real threat of death will keep a real human being from engaging in the nasty?

I've believed for a good while now that our nation's oligarchs (since they could no longer rely on keeping women pregnant and barefoot) have striven to keep our population poorly educated (stupid) and malleable.

So kids blow up schools and classmates? So the ghetto poor shoot up cheap drugs? So those who have sex die of agonizing wasting diseases? So the retired middle classes get old and poor and die from exposure because they can't afford AC or heat? So what?

It's survival of the fittest, the brightest, and the best. And fuck the rest of us, we're only in the way.

They Tell Lies, Don't They?

In case you've been missing the latest "non-story" to emerge from the bush warehouse (see AMERICAblog), Frank Rich takes it on in today's NY Times. It's all about the latest ass to sell his soul to the people of the lie for the kind of "reward" he probably doesn't expect.

You know, listening to the kinds of things this administration has said, then watching the things this administration has done reminds me of when I was growing up in a small Louisiana rural community. My dad raised chickens, geese, ducks, pigs.

There was one piglet I especially loved. He thought he was a puppy because he'd grown up alongside our family dog. The two of them had bonded and spent their time frolicking together through halcyon days in our backyard.

Until that morning when my dad hired some men to come over and stick a knife into piglet's throat and butcher him as I watched from our bathroom window.

Now my dad had never accepted Satan into his heart. He wasn't evil. He was following a natural order of raising livestock for sustenance.

But liars and hypocrites are something different. What burns my ass is that 51% of the American population last November bought the (animal) farm and frolic through their halcyon days, oblivious of the coming butcher knife.

Update: you might also want to check out this link and this one.

Tuesday, February 15, 2005

The Best Obit for Arthur Miller

The Rude Pundit has, for my money the most passionate assessment of Arthur Miller - what he stood for with his beliefs and what he accomplished with his works. Miller was a prophet of social justice. His writings will tower over this century as they did over the past, and we will ignore him at our peril.

"Besides," as the Pundit reminds us, "he also fucked Marilyn Monroe. Balls as big as cantaloupes, Miller had."

Monday, February 14, 2005

Between Truth and Lies, an Unprintable Ubiquity

This could have been written for The Onion. But, no, it's in The Times.

They won't spell the word "bullshit," but they'll publish it everyday.

Friday, February 11, 2005

Rigorous Intuition: Stirring the White House Honey Pot

I know, I know. I have been totally disregarding any mention of current events this past week. It surprises and scares me how easily I was able to slip into vacation cocoon mode. But if you click on the title of this post, you'll get a really juicy take on the currently brewing political scandal obsessing the Internet.

Which one? You know, the one being tiptoed around by the mainstream media.

Wednesday, February 9, 2005

It's Lent

And I am glad to repent.

Yesterday was exhauting, but I managed lots of pictures. A few of them are up on my photo site, but as for the rest, I'm going to let them rest for a few days before I even look at them again. I think today will be spent buying extra ink and photo papers, and napping.

A note to the person or persons who danced on and dented the hood of my car: God has consistently obliterated those people who have done bad things to me. Now live with that.

Age Cannot Wither...

She's getting older. She's added some poundage to her hull. But she is still, and probably always will be, astonishing. If various French film stars have posed for France's symbol, Becky Allen is the supreme image of all that is joyful for New Orleans. Posted by Hello

Tuesday, February 8, 2005

It's Carnival Time

But I and everyone I know has this blasted cold we can't shake. I'm congested and stuffed up and don't wanna go nowhere! 'Course, I probably will - even though it's sure to rain.

I hate these obligations to go out and enjoy myself.

Monday, February 7, 2005

My Photo Galleries Are Now Up Again

I have set up a new gallery for my photography. You can check it out here. Bear with me as I add new works. Thanks.

Sunday, February 6, 2005

Crosses on Wheels

They'e baaack...the anti-christians. Posted by Hello

A Drab Night

Went out late last night hoping to see some Mardi Gras action. I find myself sitting at the Latrine talking with friends when Sperm Magnet shows up. We sit together, taking in the "action" on the bar, and then decide to go walk the streets to see what we can see.

And that was: nothing much. No crowds, and what pockets of people there were were standing around glum, waiting to be entertained. Not the way it works. People, you ARE the entertainment! Get cracking.

We made it around the fruit loop then headed for North Rampart Street. Even this turned out to be sparse. We popped into Javier's club and were confronted by a herd of Lane-Bryant dressed drag queens trying out dance steps in the mirrors. Scary.

The Magnet keeps saying, "Do you want to be on your own?" I'm saying, "NO!" So back to the Latrine, then home to bed.

Sad. Today I'm staying in and ordering out.

Wednesday, February 2, 2005

The Krewe of Saint Ann...

Parading down Royal Street on Fat Tuesday year before last. This past year, I was late and missed them. The only subjects left were tourist girls squatting between parked cars to pee. I chose to save my flash card and batteries. Posted by Hello

Trawling for Beads

What they won't do... Posted by Hello

On the Loose

Vacation begins today! I am hereby looking for trouble. Clear the roads, N'awlins, the bear is on the prowl.

After my nap.
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