« February 2005 | Main | April 2005 »

March 31, 2005

bring your chihuahua puppy to work day

A coworker brought in her chihuahua puppy into work on Wednesday. She named the dog 'Tyson' after hot model Tyson Beckford. Too cute for words:
tyson and jimbo
A full headlock is the best way to subdue chihuahua.
tyson the chihuahua
Apparently these creatures were bred to hound black bears in the hills of the Chihuahua mountains of Mexico. The high surface-to-body ratio of the dogs guaranteed that the bears would burn out from the heat before the pack of chihuahua dogs would.

Yee-haw! I was invited out to my buddy Steve's farm out in West Virginia again. I am taking off tomorrow to go to the land where bulldogs swim free, cows stare blankly, dreamy neighbors catch fish, and granny makes tranny bass sushi. It should be fun and an already-needed chance to get away.

Go on Gurl. Dunner usually says it better than I can. Chalk another one up for the headstrong from Western Wisconsin.

Howabout that South Park episode last night? I love South Park because they tread where others won't go, and did again last night when Kenny dies while playing his 'PSP' game "Heaven vs. Hell." Turns out the game was part of God's plan to train souls on Earth to ultimately command the legions of Heaven when Hell's army of darkness assaults the gates. But the well-meaning doctors back on Earth revive Kenny after 24 hours of mortality, leaving Kenny as a vegetative soul-trapping corpse, thus robbing Heaven of it's newest general. Controversy ensues regarding Kenny's feeding tube, with Cartman as Kenny's advocate for a merciful death.

Posted by jimbo at 4:40 PM | Comments (14)

March 30, 2005

diplomatic jimbo

There are only a few douche bags where I work. Otherwise it's one of the more sane and positive places I've ever worked. But this morning I was to have a meeting, most likely confrontational, with a notorious megalomaniac in the department regarding the design of their center's newsletter.

Considering I too, am a megalomaniac, the outcome of the meeting was probably not going to go well. The topic of the meeting was to discuss design standards for their newletter redesign. The former design looked like my high school yearbook team did it. There is a standard full-color design template that most labs, centers or departments are encouraged to use, that this guy's center does not adhere to. The better template is not required, but strongly encouraged. Considering marketing and image issues are at the top of the priority list for both my Chair and the Dean of the college, said douche bag better step in line. Plus my redesign simply looks better, described as "handsome" by those who have seen it. And a uniform design scheme adopted by all the various aspects of our school create a professional, uniform image. Basic Marketing 101.

Douche bag was finishing up yelling at someone else before I came in, so it wasn't looking so good from the start. He then sat down without a hello or opening discussion and directed me to adjust at least 5 elements on the cover page alone that were in direct violation of the design standards of the encouraged newsletter design template for the school. I pulled out a handful of newsletter examples from different labs, centers and departments, calmly showing the consistency in design between all of them, and how his changes were different than the standard design. But he would not hear my case at all, and clearly does not understand the word 'compromise' and dismissed me on the spot.

During this brief meeting the word prick was loaded at the tip of my toungue, and it was a miracle I was as diplomatic and tight-lipped as I was. Just saying the word would have been sooo apt and satisfying to get out on the table. He proclaimed that the design was going to be how he wanted it to be, and that was the end of it. Yah, engineers make great graphic designers, marketing specialists and event planners, as we all know. OK, can't wait until you hear from the Chair and the Dean, douche bag. Enjoy your time with them.

But I didn't say that, instead ending the meeting with a curt, "OK."

I need to go to the gym now. There is a punching bag there.

Posted by jimbo at 10:20 AM | Comments (8)

March 29, 2005

the sun never shines in DC

Day 482 of overcast weather, or so it seems. I believe we had a sliver of light break through the storm clouds yesterday, but otherwise we are still having our typical soggy DC spring. It promises to get warmer tomorrow, and is slightly warmer today. I could have done without the coat this morning.

But my quality of life has improved in the workplace with my new windowed office. It's all mine, with nobody else's stuff in here. Yesterday Chip helped me move my 4,900-gallon aquarium from home to work, and I'm debating on whether to put marine cetaceans or giant plankton-skimming megalo-sharks into it. Marine mammals poop a lot and tend to jump out of the tank. On the other hand with a basking shark I'll have to establish a zooplankton colony in my aquarium to satisfy the critter's dietary needs. I'm just not sure yet.

Posted by jimbo at 9:41 AM | Comments (7)

March 28, 2005

The D.C. police Gay and Lesbian Liaison Unit

A very good (and long!) article about The D.C. police Gay and Lesbian Liaison Unit from today's Washington Post:

Other law enforcement agencies across the country -- Atlanta, Philadelphia, Chicago -- have officers who deal with the gay community, but none has a separate squad like the District's. In addition to four full-time officers, there are eight auxiliary and reserve officers, including one transgender member, Tomi Finkle, a retired U.S. Capitol Police sergeant who now carries a LadySmith .45.

The article focuses on the efforts of tireless, everpresent and friendly Sergeant Brett Parson. Similar article in Metro Weekly. Definitely a good PR week for Brett.

Prince has a new assistant. We love Andrea and her pictures and her hunky friends. She's one of what, 2 straight female bloggers on my blog roll? We should hook her up with the only straight male blogger I have linked, just like how straight people hook us up in the workplace or at a party. "Hey, he's straight, you two should go on a date!!!" God bless 'em, those breeders.

Posted by jimbo at 10:00 AM | Comments (4)

March 27, 2005

confection blasphemy

false peepToday The Washington Post offers a home-made recipe for Peeps. BLASPHEMY, BLASPHEMY I SAY! There is only kind of Peep in this world, and it comes stale or fresh in a package!

A related article about Peeps. Peep Homeworld. PEEP SHOW, not work-safe.

Friday night was sci-fi night at Gurl's house featuring an assortment of geeks. I brought over the hunky leprechaun, and no one got hurt, but I did get a little drunk which may have been what led me to yesterday's 12-hour regenerative coma. Either that or an intense bowling session with the rugby team, where I got a 140 game, the best in the group. Like Ed said, "I never want to actually go bowling, but when I do I always have fun."

Me and the hunky leprechaun meant to go to the National Zoo Saturday morning, but we spaced out on the Green Line and ended up a few stops further than our transfer, so we went to the Botanical Gardens Conservatory instead. I had not been there since the renovation, and it turned out pretty good, especially with a hunky bromeliad-mad naturalist in tow filling me in on the details.

Posted by jimbo at 5:52 PM | Comments (5)

March 25, 2005

GET OUT.

Sure, Ryan Reynolds goes totally psycho in the upcoming remake of The Amityville Horror, but it looks like there'll be plenty of hot shirtless scenes of His Woofyness, so I'll have to go see it. Thanks to Brent for the tip. The scene that creeped me out the most in the first movie was when the two points of red light eyes were outside the window warning the wife to "GET OUT!"
lick lick lick nibble nibble nummy nummy
Speaking of getting out of town, best wishes this week to former "President" of Kyrgizstan, Mr. Askar Akayev. During a vacation from my Peace Corps duties in 1997, I hiked to Kyrgizstan over the Tien Shan Mountain range from Almaty, the capitol of Kazakstan. And despite what it said on the front page hard copy of the Washington Post this morning, Almaty is not the capitol of Kyrgizstan. Below is a picture of our campsite on the trip. I'm not sure if we were in Kyrgizstan by then, but it was a beautiful river valley between ranges. It was probably the most challenging hike I'd ever done, as it took us up to 18,000 feet or so, where the air was thin and my comrades got pukey, while I got weak from the altitude sickness.
campsite in the tien shan mountains - I'm on the right
Kyrgizstan was a beautiful country, with a very clear lake in the middle of it which apparently flooded the hometown of Tamerlane, or as he's known in Central Asia, Timour the Lame.

And speaking of lame, I heretofore give permission to any and all of my blog readership to end my life quickly and humanely should I ever enter a vegetative state and/or become brain dead. See if I recover in say, 9 months tops. 15 years? Hell no. Please, please don't ever drag me through some kind of right to life political drama. It is written here that you may do the duty should the time come. And please, please don't starve me to death. An overdose of something narcotic will suffice. And make it REALLY GOOD CRACK. Something that would cause a mild sweat in Whitney Houston would probably do me in in a few minutes.

Posted by jimbo at 11:05 AM | Comments (5)

March 24, 2005

creepy inner circle HRC stuff

coffee and brownie at cafe panchesco in AZ
Coffee and brownie at the cafe where Panchesco works. Photo by Homer.

During breakfast this morning I caught up on some news from this weekend's Washington Blade. There was an article in there about HRC's inner circle, confirming some suspicions I've held for a while.

HRC always kinda creeped me out. For one thing, I don't like the fact that a single organization has so much power, and that so many people blindly support a single entity to represent us. I would like to have more options in which groups I choose to support. I'm asking for a democrazy of organizations I suppose. It's important to point out that we are still a movement, not an institution. And yet they have an impressive institutional edifice built in their honor down 17th street and hold their rallys there during rush hour, regardless of the protestors' safety during the well-attended events. Hint: stop masturbating, get a local park permit, and hold your rallys where it doesn't block traffic or endanger lives.

Not much substance to the above statements, I know. Just a feeling, but feelings matter. HRC just creeps me out in the same unspoken way that Wal-Mart creeps me out, which is all I can say. Yeah, they remind me of McDonald's and Wal-Mart and Subway...they are everywhere you go, and always a safe bet. But the food all sorta tastes the same.

What was interesting in the Blade article was that a long line of HRC leadership hails from Boston, the capital of the overly-educated. And I would contend the disconnected. After reading the article and imagining the close-knit board shuttling to and from DC along the narrow route between here and Boston, I had to wonder, do these people have any idea of what's going on between the coasts? Most of the HRC "insiders" quoted in the article had nothing but praise for the Boston Board. But in an established institutional culture of conformity, what kind of comments do you expect? I'd like to see something new, a shakeup, and a wider diversity of opinions and options, for HRC is not the movement, we are. And depending on a single organization to change things for us is a risky venture at best.

Posted by jimbo at 3:32 PM | Comments (17)

back to mordor

I arrived back in Mordor last night on the backs of eagles. The skies are cold, greasy and dark, as opposed to the sunny fields of Gondor. The wicked Red Eye Orcs are on the move again, gathered reverently around the Crack of Doom as Sauron watches over them with his cruel, unflinching eye.

Sometimes Gurl compares DC to Menzoberranzan, the city of the drow elves in the Forgotten Realms campaign setting. Menzoberranzan is a city of evil, a cruel environment full of deceit and treachery populated by the drow (commonly known as the "dark elves") who are ruthless, and forever plotting against one another.

Come spring, you could also say that DC is the realm of Zuggtmoy, demoness lady of fungi from the Greyhawk setting, who brings mold, sickness and phlegm to the people. Her time is coming soon.

Can you tell I have post-vacation blues? And clearly it's time to play D&D again.

I did have a nice vacation though. I just talked to a friend on the phone about Tucscon, and he said it was, "the ugliest town I'd ever been to." Perhaps I was seeing things through rose-tinted lenses, and Homer did mention that it was the greenest he's ever seen it, but I didn't think it was so bad. I liked the suguaro and the palm trees, and my rashy hands completely returned to normal human hands due to the healing climate. And of course new meat in a smaller town is always popular, which is good for the ego, and I certainly needed a boost.

Gurl also returned to DC from Florida, and we both compared similar instances at the airport regarding local gay DC boys who will not acknowledge the presence of another gay person, because that of course would mean you're hitting on the other, which of course would be loss of face, a diplomatic faux pas. It was very refreshing to have people come up to me in Tucson and be friendly and talk and openly flirt with no pretense or veils of one sort or another. Here, if you talk to someone in a friendly and open manner, the immediate assumption is that you want to marry them, when in fact you're (at least me) simply being friendly.

Posted by jimbo at 10:59 AM | Comments (3)

March 21, 2005

last night I dreamt of San Pedro...

I'm in Sierra Vista, AZ, near the Fort Huachuca Army base, until tomorrow. Today I went looking for one birding spot, but got lost and happened to find the San Pedro Riparian National Conservation Area instead, managed by the Bureau of Land Management. It's an area that preserves one of the imporant North/South migratory hotspots on this continent, in this case the route some birds take from Mexico to Coastal Western US. Along the way is the San Pedro river, which provides shelter in the form of cottonwood trees in an otherwise migratory bird-unfriendly route, and of course water in most cases too. I was able to spot the very pretty vermillion flycatcher, but it was too early to spot a green kingfisher.

I strolled out into the desert from the riverside to investigate strange burrows (desert owls, tarantulas, rattlesnakes?) and owl barfings in the sand, and found a pottery sherd! I'll have Homer identify it tomorrow. Homer has been a font of overwhelming cultural and archaeological information while he's been the lovely host that he is. So far he's shown me ancient rock art, the location of every single canal and Hohokan village site in Tucson, and his entire ancient terra cotta dildo collection from the Mizquakozoic (11,000 - 6,000 B.C.) period of human settlement in the Arizona region.

Anyway, I did manage to find the City of Sierra Vista wastewater treatment facility, which treats secondary sewage naturally through a series of aerated ponds. Waterfowl that normally wouldn't be attracted to this area gather in the ponds to feed and breed. I've been to similar areas in Central Asia. Sounds gross, but it's an effective way to treat sewage in arid regions near mountains. There was a nice visitor bird viewing platform with no one there but me.

Then I made my way to the mountains to a natural area preserved by the Nature Conservancy, called Ramsey Canyon. Only one hummingbird spotted, as it was windy and cold. But the hike and view were nice and I got a bit of a workout going up the mountain.

Here at my hotel, are a lot of tanned buzzcut military woofers using the hotel for temporary housing. baw chikka baw-waawww... There is pleasant scenery going by in the lobby as I blog here like a geek. An added benefit of this is that these boys go to bed early, like the place is quiet by 9pm.

I am a man of many faces. The circus was in town last night, and as I was dining in the local KFC which was near the circus, someone asked me, "Are you here with the circus?" Then today at the conservation area, someone asked me if I was a park ranger. And later on at the conservancy, I was mistaken for a Nature Conservancy volunteer. What do I look like, a volunteer park ranger clown? I bet that would rile up Glennalicious in some way or another. Perhaps I'll wear my volunteer park ranger clown outfit at the NYC blogger gathering in May.

Throughout the day I've been rubbing elbows with birders. They are a strange bunch. If any of them see you with a Peterson's Field Guide or pair of binoculars, and you're approaching them from a direction that they have not been, they will immediately ask you, "WHAT BIRDS HAVE YOU SEEN?" without so much as a salutation. But it is perhaps its own salutation. They are usually cute older retired couples (people of temporal longevity), and I often wonder which one got the other one into the hobby. Or does one just go along with the other and has long ago given up on lobbying for other forms of recreation?

What was also notable is that I'm the youngest birder I've seen all day - by at least 20 years. Is it my ultimate destiny to become the MASTER BIRDER OF THE UNIVERSE? With Alaskan, Pacific Northwest, Pacific pelagic, Midwest, Mid-Atlantic, Gulf Coast, Central American, Central Asian, European and North Woods species under my belt, I got a lotta species seen. Fear my power. Cower when I wield my optics. Kneel as I refer to my field guide. Do not question my identification authority.

Posted by jimbo at 7:37 PM | Comments (6)

March 19, 2005

MEEP-MEEP!

Hello from Homer's House in TuCSon. Apparently I've been spelling it incorrectly until now. Anyway, we had a lovely dinner last night featuring very friendly guests including the deligtfully perky and bubbly Panchesco, who also takes nice pictures. I've found out one secret to taking nice pictures is that you take an awful lot of them. Anyhow, later on we played a parlor game where I won a barbie-like doll with this evil expression on her face. She kinda looks like she's trying to kick a 5-year crystal meth addiction cold turkey, and she isn't happy about it. I love her. After the games we went out to a local bar where it was Tucson's version of Mid-Atlantic Leather, albeit a bit smaller. I sat in a sling for posterity, and you can see how much I liked it here. The baloons in the background were blown up by none other than Buster himself, baloon fetishist extrordanaire.

MEEP-MEEP! Today I finally saw my first Road Runner, and it was very big and very fast. They kinda slink around along the roadside, sure enough. Homer took me out to the Arizona-Sonora Desert Museum which was very large and extensive, and a great example of educational interpretation. Although like Homer, I did feel bad seeing the Gambrell's Quail nervously pacing at the edge of the bird enclosure, clearly wanting to go roam around in the desert. I pointed out to the two teenage docents in the reptile house that their desert boas were indeed fucking, although not in those words. "Come quick!" I said to them to draw them from their station to see the miracle of life ocurring in front of us all, "You can see the male's tiny penis squirming into the cloaca of the female!" They hurried back to their station after I said that.

In addition to the road runner, today I saw many inca dove, the elf owl, gila woodpecker, magnificent hummingbird, pyrrhuloxia, and lots more.

Tomorrow afternoon I'll be heading out on a Jimbo Solo adventure for a couple days to Ramsey Canyon, where there are even more birds I haven't seen yet. I don't even know where Ramsey Canyon is, or where I'm staying, but my backpack and tent is ready and so is my credit card if need be. I return Tuesday in time to watch Amazing Race with Homer and the gang.

Posted by jimbo at 11:07 PM | Comments (6)

March 18, 2005

cactusconia

Hi from Tuscon! I got in late last night after a loooong flight from Newark. There's gotta be a quicker way to get here. Anyway, Homer took me out to see the oldest Spanish mission in the U.S., nicely restored. At one moment there I pointed to some important looking chick on a mural and asked Homer, "Who is that?" Homer replied, "That's the Virgin Mary." I didn't pay much attention in Sunday School.

Then we went hiking up a desert wash to see some ancient rock art and many forms of cactii. Many pictures are up on Homer's blog here. So far I have spotted a cactus wren, Gambell's quail, some new flicker, a new hummingbird, and Homer tells me that the old production lot that was used for filming Little House on the Prairie was around here somewhere, but he says it's boriing and too expensive and not worth seeing.

Posted by jimbo at 6:57 PM | Comments (1)

March 17, 2005

traveling, traveling, leaving logic and reason

Running a bit late today with the packing for my trip to Tuscon, which I meant to do last night but I was at work late finally moving into my new office with WINDOWS! The light was nearly blinding, my Morlock eyes unaccustomed to the radiance. I was beat afterwards, as it involved moving a lot of heavy furniture for almost 2 hours. I skipped the gym that night.

I'll be in transit most of the day, so no time to celebrate St. Paddy's day. Perhaps I'll have a beer at my layover in Newark.

Posted by jimbo at 12:11 PM | Comments (4)

March 16, 2005

the lost scrolls of aravosis

In regards to the blind retailer entry, a hometown friend also living here in DC found out from some of her coworkers that the Randolph Shepherd Act gives hiring preference to blind people for vending positions. That explains the oddity. Whaddaya know?

the lost scrolls of aravosis Some of you may have read John Aravosis' advocacy blog AmericaBlog.com. Most of the time he's busying himself exposing hypocrite closeted gay Republicans and stuff like that, but the other day he had an entry asking his readers to help him translate an antique script he bought in New Orleans that may be from 1690 or so. But the part that cracked me up were the readers' comments on what the script could be. Most were genuinely helpful suggestions, but more than a few smartasses had to put in their two cents, myself included. Here are some of my favorites:


Posted by jimbo at 10:10 AM | Comments (3)

March 15, 2005

the stretch guy

Last night I was able to work out with weights for the first time in several weeks. It was either too cold, too snowy, rugby practice, I was too sick...yeah, you know the story. Anyhow, it was good to be back to the new Gallery Place WSC, if even for a short and feeble arm workout as I'm still a little sicky and weak.

Anyhow, the Stretch Guy was there again. Stretch Guy and I are the only two guys in that gym that like to use the Stretch Center - that cage-like thingy with handles and levers that help you with stretch positioning, leverage and balance. I spend quite a long time on the Stretch Center, as it makes me feel good and helps prevent my back from throwing out. He's on the thing even longer than I am, and if I need to stretch and I see him on there, forget it, as the Stretch Center only has room for one. There can be only one.

I walk on to the gym floor from the locker room. He sees me, and I see him. No acknowlegement is needed, but we track each others' movements. Tumbleweeds and dust devils blow across the gym floor, I gnaw on the straw in my mouth and sneer in his direction, and he spits on the floor and squints back. While he is a cutie, I don't know if he's gay or not, and I don't care. We are not flirting. Stretch Guy is my competition to Stretch Center divahood, the only other who would dare take my cherished spot on the throne of muscle conditioning. As for that evening, Stretch Guy and I did not have overlapping agendas, so there was no trouble in River City - this time. I get to go through my stretch forms and no one gets hurt, yet he occasionally looks over longingly at the Stretch Center, yearning to be using such a tool of the gods.

After relating the above story to my coworker, she suggests I cut the macho crap and simply talk to him...maybe he can be my stretch partner! It wouldn't hurt to have a cute stretch partner.

Posted by jimbo at 1:18 PM | Comments (7)

March 14, 2005

blind retailers, sick leprechauns & monstrous cactii

I used to work at the USDA Headquarters when I first moved to DC, and I still use the credit union there for my banking needs. I recently discovered a rugby teammate works at the branch office where I cash my checks, so we now have lunch when I do things like cash in my DC tax return (I owe Federal, thanks Burl). Anyhow, it is interesting to note that the cash register guy at the cafeteria there is blind. You have to describe to him what you got, and then payment is on the honor system. "This is a $20," I say when paying for my $4.16 ham sandwitch and large coke. He feels for the change and hands me the correct amount. Trippy.

And I am trippy today - totally crunked out on Nyquil/Dayquil, although I'm glad to say I'm feeling better. I spent a lot of the weekend recovering and giving the cold to a certain hunky leprechaun, whom I hope gets better before his flagship holiday which I'll miss due to being in transit.

On Thursday I leave for Tuscon, AZ and will be staying with Homer, and will meet Panchesco. In addition to spring flowers and new bird species, I hope to see the rare and dangerous saguaro sentinel. Copious amounts of rain this winter promise to bring monstrous cactii and other oddities to bloom.

I'm Gonna Hurl Part II: I finally came across some Girl Scouts this weekend selling cookies on U Street, and promptly bought 2 boxes of Thin Mints, now refridgerated of course. Then my roomate bought me a box not knowing I had already purchased some. I have since inhaled several rolls, and now I'm gonna hurl again.

Posted by jimbo at 1:45 PM | Comments (7)

March 13, 2005

tribune tribulations

Dunner referred a hometown reporter to me last week who wanted to write about bloggers, and I got quoted in the local paper today:

Jim Barrett, a Holmen native who now lives, works and writes his Jimbo.info blog in Washington, D.C., says bloggers have to "remember a blog is public, and you never know who is reading it, so watch what you say about work, family, friends and partners. Do as I say but not as I do."

Blogging, he said, is "a great way to exercise your writing skills, and you'll find you can make everyday things sound interesting if you spin it the right way. Be focused about what you want to write about whether it is topical, political or just a personal journal."

I sound like a Mr. Smarty Pants...should I just become the Miss Manners of the tech world & blogosphere?

The article didn't get the link quite right, leading the readers to my splash page which doesn't link to the actual blog. However, you can find the blog with a simple Google search, but I'll have to say that I share Dunner's reluctance to share the blog with everyone back home. Not that that stopped me from sharing my views in the paper's opinion section when I was there for the holidays. That article led a lot of old high school friends to find the blog and send kind e-mails to me about the piece. Mom reads this blog, and maybe my 2 brothers from time to time, but out of context it can read pretty racy at times if you don't really know me. I'll often say that this blog is merely a slice of my own interpretation of myself, with entries usually written before Noon during the week on a very high coffee buzz. That state of mind while writing often gives the entries a skewed interpretation of me, which leads me to worry a little about how I'm viewed. But then again if I cared that much I wouldn't have a public blog.

Posted by jimbo at 10:10 PM | Comments (4)

March 11, 2005

i'm gonna hurl

My friend Seamus once told me, "Jimbo, I don't think you're as robust as you think you are," which seems to be a recurring theme in my life. Last night I wanted to go to rugby practice, but it turned out to be a bad idea. I thought my after-work tiredness was, well, from being tired from work, but I was mistaken. On Wednesday I got home and passed out for two hours, then woke up feeling nauseous the whole evening, with no appetite. It should have been a clue that I'm still getting over the snotty cold.

So last night I was beat just from the conditioning drills, something that normally would simply get me warmed up for the rest of the practice. Then I felt like I was going to hurl again, a feeling that stuck with me for most of the evening after I left practice early. Now today I feel worse than yesterday having tried to push it. I think I will avoid Saturday's practice so I can get over this shit.

Anyone catch Wil Wheaton last night on CSI? He played a crazy homeless man and was on the show for less than 5 minutes. But it was good to see him acting, and CSI is also mildly addicting. Will also writes geeky columns for Dragon Mazazine and has a somewhat famous blog.

Speaking of child actors, Fitz pointed out to me yesterday that Alison Arngrim, a.k.a. Nellie Olesen, is also going to be in that film Surge of Power. But then I realized I'll already be in Tuscon by then (DAMMIT!), so I hope y'all enjoy the film. I'm also flying on St. Patty's Day, so I never get to do anything fun.

And here's a stupid ill-substantiated article about D&D and the Israeli Defense Force. Read the article about the actual point, which is poorly supported. What is getting the geeks all riled up is that the photo for the article shows people LARPing around, which is different than playing D&D. See, when I tell people that I play D&D, what I'm afraid most people think is that I get together with Burl, Gurl, Jon-Jon, Woodchuck, Sketchy Dwight, Lich Queen Doug, My'ra, Nick and Bubbles is that we dress up in plate mail armor and run around DC and pretend to fight orcs. No. That is called Live Action Role-Playing (LARP) and we don't do that. We don't fuck each other while wearing plush animal outfits either, fyi. Instead, we sit around with dice and character sheets with stats on them and eat lots of carbs and gossip and talk about men and tricking and dating. That's Dungeons and Dragons to us. It's kind of like a bridge club with dice and handbooks. Oh, and we like roll dice for maybe a half hour or so and act out our characters - WITHOUT dressing up in a frikkin' elven tiara! For this reason, I am often more leery of telling people I play D&D than that I am gay.

Today I move into my office with a window!

Posted by jimbo at 10:16 AM | Comments (3)

March 10, 2005

Surge of Power - March 18 @ DCJCC

Surge of Power: The Stuff of Heroes is a campy action-adventure story of an original comic book superhero. It pays tribute and homage to many films, television programs, and comic books in the science-fiction and fantasy genres. And also an all-new high for low-budget camp! And like ohmigawd! it features Lou Ferrigno from The Incredible Hulk and Nichelle Nichols from the original Star Trek!!!

Surge of Power will play Friday, March 18 at 7 & 9pm at the DC Jewish Community Center at 16th & Q St., NW DC. The film is presented by One In Ten's Reel Affirmations film series. (Like, my roomate does all kinds of stuff for them).

No more City of Heroes online gaming for this gay director/actor (who will be appearing at the screening, in costume, fyi):
which server are we on?
Movie Poster:
surge of power
And I don't know who this queen (Bobby Trendy) is, but she's in the film and I already think I love her:
playing an evil queen?

Posted by jimbo at 10:08 AM | Comments (12)

March 9, 2005

on use of the term 'self loathing' & collective guilt

Last year when the gay marriage debate was at a fever pitch, I was discussing the issue with a straight female coworker in the car on the way to lunch. When I mentioned gay Republicans who work in the White House with President Bush, she blurted out - without me feeding her any terminology I swear to you I did not - "Isn't that a little self loathing?"

I've wanted to talk about the use of the term 'self loathing' for some time now. You hear it thrown around a lot amongst gay people, especially in reference to gay Republicans, the hypermasculine, and closet queens. I'm not sure exactly what the term means, because I think some gay Republicans love themselves very, very much, and have no ill-will towards themselves, their actions or their political stance. I think they are completely content with what they are doing, and see no wrong in working with those who seek to limit our freedoms. On a conscious level at least, I'm sure they are quite self-loving.

I am guessing the main use of the phrase in reference to gay Republicans is that they work against their own people, so the 'self' they loathe is us, all of the gay people. Am I correct in this assumption of the use of the term "self loathing"? The flaw in that use of the term is that such people don't actually percieve themselves as 'us'. Gays are the other which must be feared and despised. At one stage in my coming out, I clearly recall standing there in a bar saying to myself in my mind, "I'm not like these people." Well, no I'm not, but we are of the same species and have a lot of similarities. But I believe a lot of gay men get stuck in this phase and end up compartmentalizing themselves outside of any concept of gay community.

During the long drive to and from the ski slopes last week, there wasn't a whole lot of arguing or debate in our conversations, as the car was filled with three bleeding-heart liberal Democrats with similar outlooks. General agreement doesn't necessarily make for good conversation. Chip and Stefan are sweeties, but perhaps the drive may not have seemed so long when every issue we brought up resulted in a chorus of agreements, "yep"s and "uh-huh"s. A self-loathing gay conservative Republican may have spiced up the chatter a bit and made the drive seem shorter. >; ) Anyhow, I proposed a theory of mine that popped into my head one day regarding 9/11 and how America has seemed to freak out since then. (And I'd love it if you read the whole goddamn thing before commenting, instead of just the first line or paragraph. Thanks, Jimbo.)

I will concede that America is a Christian nation. We generally have a lot of Christian values and hang-ups, and most people here were raised in one Christian cult or another. Even the American atheist's moral base is grounded in a lot of Christian values, although most of them would deny it.

Along with our Christian values comes the requisite Christian guilt, which I'm happy to say I don't have much of. However, a lot of Americans carry a tremendous amount of guilt on their backs, and an elaborate toolkit of rationalizations to deal with the load.

Many of us believe that when bad things happen to us, we somehow deserved it. When I got sick as a child, I remember my mother saying to me, "You have a cold because you're running around too much!" In effect, she was saying that my cold was not the result of a viral infection, but because I somehow deserve it because of my actions. It's an example of poetic versus scientific realism. The rational versus the mystic.

Similarly, I think America is freaking out about morals, values and homos because we somehow believe we are guilty of something and were punished justly on 9/11. It sounds very irrational, but hey, look at the Presidential election results. This is not a rational, enlightened nation. We were struck a hard blow, perhaps an indirect backhand slap from the hand of God himself, and for some reason we deserved it. Someone is to blame for this punishment. It must be Janet Jackson and her boob, Howard Stern, and the homos. It is a collective feeling of guilt that seems to have fueled this country's need for a scapegoat. Wily politicians have sensed this feeling and have wielded it much to their advantage. Even some homos have jumped on the guilt bandwagon, joining the moral ragers despite their best interests. Deep down inside they too feel that we deserve what we got, and don't mind helping the religious nutbags hunt down those who brought this punishment upon us. Self loating on some level I guess, and an intense need to plod along with the herd.

I don't personally believe that we were punished on 9/11 or that gays deserve to be legislated into the dark ages, but I do believe that a good portion of Americans feel this way on some level, and it may help explain the hysteria that's been going on recently. 9/11 is proof in some people's minds (or in the backs of their minds) that we had it coming, and now we must hunt down and stop those immoral beings that brought down our country. Discuss.

Posted by jimbo at 10:50 AM | Comments (12)

March 8, 2005

sayid sings!

Last night Gurl and I went to see the very fun movie Bride and Prejudice, because we love everything (well, Bend it Like Beckham anyway) by Gurinder Chadha, who's slated to direct the remake movie I Dream of Jeannie. Hmm...don't push it, honey. Anyway, it was interesting to see Sayid from Lost singing a Bhangra number in this East-Meets-West Bollywood/Hollywood musical. More than a few hotties in the film too. Although the lead hottie never kisses the girl in the film, adhering to total Bollywood style, only gazing longingly into her fabulous hazel eyes.

Hmm...I think I'm onto something here at work. A friend suggested I get a grad school recommendation from my boss, the chair of our department. So I go up to my boss and say, "I have a favor to ask of you..." - and he ran away, albeit with an excuse. Have I discovered an effective boss repellent?

Posted by jimbo at 11:59 AM | Comments (7)

March 7, 2005

snotmonster jimbo

I felt it coming on Saturday night at the Eagle, then my head started to flow on Sunday. By Sunday night I was blowing snot every half hour or so, which continued thru the night until today. Not debilitating, but not fun either, and at least I'm not plugged up with a headache. I tried to work out today but was at half energy, so it's a little more than a mild cold. Or maybe it's spring allergies, as I've already heard the song sparrow, cardinal, and house finches belting it out already. And the robins have returned here and there too.

I managed to make a few calls about the grad school situation, and learned I have to apply through the university grad system again, another $50 into the frikkin' system. I'm in no position to be a prick, but technically I've already paid the fee, so should get a refund. But trying to explain that to the drones in charge of the system would be more difficult, so I relent for now. I'm told once I re-apply, my application will be considered for the waiting list, which is better than nothing I guess. I'll be sure to hold the hands of those I'm at the mercy of to be sure it gets on the table on Friday so there's no excuses this time.

Saturday night at the Eagle I saw an old Peace Corps friend who was stationed at the most remote site in our country. I went out to visit Richard once as he was on a wildlife refuge which was the home for the westernmost population of pink flamingos in Central Asia, which I was able to see. They really act like the plastic flamingos in suburban yards, just standing there on one leg for long periods of time. Out on his reserve I also saw black-legged stilts and a pink starling that sang very loud, in addition to ancient Kazak burial domes made of mud.

Anyway, this volunteer and I were some of the few gay volunteers in our country, and we had an illicit gay porn mag exchange going on with straight volunteers as our runners between sites. The straight volunteer who was near his site would bring a "care package" of porn to deliver from his region to mine, where his girlfriend was stationed. Back then American travellers were still suspect, and our runner told us that he was stopped and questioned once on the train by the local militia, sweating the whole time and praying that they didn't search his bag and find our "care package". He would have had a hard time explaining the large envelope in his backpack containing Honcho magazine and an outdated Colt Hairy Chested Men calendar to the armed Kazak militiamen. Or maybe not (cue porn soundtrack music...baw chicka-waw-waaaww...).

Posted by jimbo at 5:30 PM | Comments (1)

March 5, 2005

bring it

I survived my first outdoor rugby practice of the season today. I had predicted I was gonna die from being so sore from the snowboarding the days before, but I guess it was different muscles that got worked. The rugby running must have knocked out all the lactaid in my muscles or whatever. I was honored to be assigned to be scrumhalf for a side at long last, I'm guessing due to my good performance last fall. I really want to stay clear of winger this year, as it's gotten old and frankly, I just don't tackle guys with momentum as good as I tackle the ones up close, and that's what wingers end up doing a lot. Plus I love the scrumhalf position, as it's very A.D.D. friendly. Looks like the turnout will allow for two sides again this year, which will allow for more position flexibility again.

It was probably better that there was no cell phone connection up on top of the mountain, as I would have been tempted to try and spend valuable snowboarding time to correct some current school drama while on the short vacation. On Wednesday at about 4, right before I was set to leave for snowboarding, I made and inquiry about the status of my graduate school application. It was up for consideration February 1st, and I hadn't yet heard a peep about it, not even a rejection letter. I learned that it wasn't even looked at because of my status in the system. The system currently says I'm a non-degree seeking student, which I had to be in order to register for classes that I have been taking while waiting for my graduate school application to be considered. Little did I know, that I had to be a graduate applicant in the system. It didn't matter that three professors and a few Ph.D. students in the program knew I was all excited to apply, and had been waiting for a long time for this. Yes, I know taking classes doesn't guarantee me to get into the program, and yes, I know I'm not a ringer for the program. But hearing that it didn't even get looked at was a punch to the gut...I almost started crying when I heard about it, and that's a big deal for a Norwegian from the Midwest. Just being ignored due to an arcane step in the process is worse than rejection. I haven't wanted something like this in a very long time. I want this more than I want Matthew Fox or Seann Scott, and that's saying a lot.

But I am told there is still hope and things I can do, so on Monday I will call the department back with a clearer mind so I can fully understand what the hell is going on. Plus I will try to get the professors from the classes that I took to try and advocate for me, as I'm told a word from one or two should help a lot. But it's just frustrating that a drone there just put my application in the 'no' pile, even when she knew I wanted to be considered, and didn't let me know, not even with a rejection letter. Just no word, at the mercy of the system. Fuck the system, I'm gonna flex my formidable people skills and make things happen. It's what works in real life.

I am insanely jealous of the travellin' Mighty Jimbo. Whales, penguins, seals, and rusty Russian freighters. Antarctica is the place to see Southern Hemisphere pelagic sea birds as well, although I'm sure the wonder of it all was lost on such a metrosexual bear. And BTW Jimbo, my blog is a bear-lover's site. Bring it.

Perhaps Mighty Jimbo is on to something...who knows, maybe the bear look will be the latest trend to jump over from homos to the breeders? Next thing you know his ripped abs will be history and he'll be wearing flannel, asking his girlfriends to rub his furry beer-gut.

Posted by jimbo at 5:37 PM | Comments (2)

March 4, 2005

snowshoe

Yep, it was quite a drive to Snowshoe in West Virginia, but the powder was good and the weather cooperative. I don't drive much less when I go backpacking though...it's what you gotta do to get away from the urban DC environment. I entered into my Jimbo van Winkle mode and slept after every couple hours of boarding, so I'm caught up. By the end of the trip I got good enough with the board to keep up with Chip and Stefan. on top of snowshoe

at rest

dude, the pow was sick!

one of the runs

chip and stefan

on top of snowshoe

Posted by jimbo at 9:15 PM | Comments (5)

March 2, 2005

no one likes a sleep-deprived ski princess

I will be leaving for West Virginia tonight for some more snowboarding with two rugby pals at Snowshoe Mountain. Now if the snow out there is as crappy as it was in PA, I'm giving up on the entire East Coast snow scene. However, considering how much snow we got around here, much of it should have stuck out there. The snow report from there this week says they got 29" since Monday, so it looks promising.

The Princess Suite for My Royal Self was a bit pricey, but my Spidey-Sense went off when I thought back on some past rugby trips with these two guys. Both are notorious Thunder Snorers, and I'm a light sleeper. Not a good combination. I promised them they would die in their sleep if I had to share a room with them. No one likes a cranky, sleep-deprived Princess.

Good news at work: I will be moving to a room with windows that open to the outside air flow, and SUNLIGHT! Blessed sunlight, which should help improve my mood considerably. I've been in a bit of a funk all winter. Getting back to working out regularly would help too, and there's no excuse for that. No more messin' around next week, this time I mean it!

Posted by jimbo at 10:12 AM | Comments (7)

March 1, 2005

it's a record

It's an all-time record here folks. I didn't think they could do it, but they beat their own record. Nutty professors asking me to market their program/seminar/lecture 24 hours, or even and hour before an event was a pretty outrageous and superfluous request. But today was the grand-daddy of all requests, I was asked by a nutty professor to advertise their lecture 5 minutes before it was to begin. I shit you not. I need to go have a cocktail at a communications/marketing bar (The Spin?) so I can be with my own people. They need not be gay, they just need to understand.

Posted by jimbo at 11:07 AM | Comments (7)